Owners of lions, tigers and bears, beware: Ohio may not be the best place to settle down.
A working group commissioned by Gov. John Kasich will recommend a ban on the ownership of exotic animals in the state, according to the AP.
The group's recommendations, combined with input from the Ohio Dept. of National Resources and state Dept. of Agriculture, were due to Kasich by Nov. 30. The suggestions would then be codified into legislation.
The proposal calls for the banning of dangerous undomesticated animals such as monkeys and tigers, with limited exceptions for zoos, circuses and research facilities starting in 2014. New safety standards would be put in place for current owners in the meantime, as well as registration requirements for animals.
The group also suggests giving state officials the right to take any unregistered creatures from private property. Violators would face criminal and civil penalties. It also places a ban on the sale of the animals.
The study group's input follows the freeing and subsequent killing of 48 animals last month, when their owner set them loose then committed suicide.
Animal rights activists blamed Kasich for the ordeal, claiming the governor allowed the ban on exotic animals to lapse in April.
Kasich let the order expire in April, claiming the plan -- which would have placed the Ohio Department of Natural Resources in charge of enforcing the ban -- would not work because the move exceeded the authority of the agency, which is limited to regulating only native species.
Kasich pointed to the April creation of the working group as evidence that he was addressing the isse.
We're going to allow this working group to move faster and at the end of the day there will be legislation, something enforceable and solve this, Kasich said after the incident.