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Aurora voters will get another chance to decide the fate of the pit bull ban



Aurora voters will get another chance to decide the fate of the pit bull ban

Ten years after Aurora voters last decided the fate of pit bulls in Colorado’s third-largest city — by choosing to uphold the city’s ban — they will revisit the question.

In November, voters will decide whether three types of pit bulls – the American Pit Bull Terrier, the American Staffordshire Terrier and the Staffordshire Bull Terrier – can be legally owned in the city. The Aurora City Council on Monday referred a measure asking that question to this fall’s vote.

A pit bull named Merry looks at the camera in an Arvada home in 2020. Aurora voters will get another chance to vote in November on whether to allow or ban the controversial breed in America’s third-largest city Colorado. (Photo by RJ Sangosti/JS)

The latest twist in the story of pit bulls in Aurora was prompted by a late March ruling in which Arapahoe County District Judge Elizabeth Beebe Volz threw out the City Council’s 2021 decision to strike down the city’s long-standing ban on pit bulls .

Voters had chosen seven years earlier to keep the city’s breed-specific ban, which first went into effect in 2005, in place. The judge’s conclusion: Because it was the voters who decided not to overturn Aurora’s pit bull ban in 2014, only they could make the decision to overturn that position.

“Since the city did not resubmit the proposed repeal of the pit bull ban to a vote, the enactment of an ordinance that conflicted with the vote of the (previous) resolution proposing repeal was without authority and therefore void,” wrote she in her March message. 26 statement.

Volz was responding to a lawsuit filed by an Aurora resident challenging the city’s 2021 repeal.

But city spokesman Michael Brannen said the revocation will remain in effect while the city appeals the judge’s ruling. In November, voters could make that repeal permanent or restore the original ban with their decision.

The upcoming vote comes at a time when Colorado’s pit bull ban is steadily disappearing. Denver voters ended the city’s 30-year ban on the city’s animals in late 2020. Last year, a pit bull ban was lifted in Fort Lupton. In 2021, elected leaders in Commerce City and Lone Tree did the same.