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In one week, petition against Devils Lake pit bull ban collects more than half the signatures needed to file

DEVILS LAKE, N.D. -- Devils Lake residents who have initiated a petition to abolish the city's ban on pit bulls say they have more than half of the signatures needed to put it to a public vote.

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File photo of a pit bull by Dave Wallis / Forum News Service

DEVILS LAKE, N.D.  -- Devils Lake residents who have initiated a petition to abolish the city’s ban on pit bulls say they have more than half of the signatures needed to put it to a public vote.

Daisha Azure made the announcement Wednesday on a Facebook page named after her pet grooming business, Pretty Paws. They need 444 signatures -- 15 percent of the number of people who voted in the last gubernatorial election.

The petition was initiated last week by Amanda McDonough, a Devils Lake resident who wants to adopt a pit bull, but a city ordinance that has been on the books since 1987 bans pit bull breeds and mixes within city limits. Those violating the ordinance face a $500 fine and up to 30 days in jail, plus they have to remove the dog from the city.

The City Commission upheld the ordinance last month in a 3-2 vote.

The signatures must come from residents living in city limits, but there is no deadline to submit the petition. Azure said in her post one signature gatherer collected more than 100 signatures in less than 24 hours.

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If the petition is certified by the county auditor, the commission would either have to pass an ordinance with the petition’s language within 20 days of the document receiving certified approval or call a special election. If the voters approve the ordinance, it would become law and could not be repealed or amended except by a vote of the people.

Azure hopes to turn in 550 signatures.

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