ACTION ALERT: SB1414 and HB777
Updated: Feb 28, 2020
ALERT: Ban on all tegus, green iguanas, and Conditional Species in Florida
What to do now.
Keep calling and emailing your legislators! The next stop for both bills (SB1414 and HB777) will be floor votes in their houses of origin. That means all legislators (Senators and Representatives) will be voting before the bills each crossover to the other chamber.
Know that the changes that have already been made are direct results of BOTH our lobbying efforts and your calls and emails. Please keep contacting the legislators as this brings awareness to the unintended consequences. The more voices, the more the legislators listen!
Remember to be civil and professional at all times. Acting otherwise only hurts our efforts.
These changes have already been made thanks to our combined efforts:
1. Ability to breed iguanas and tegus for the purpose of selling them out of state;
2. Grandfather provision allowing people to keep their existing pet iguanas and tegus;
3. Ability to collect wild iguanas and tegus and sell them outside of Florida.
Key talking points:
1. Ask legislators to support a floor amendment for SB 1414/HB 777 that will preserve the current conditional species permit program.
2. If SB1414 or HB777 pass as currently written it will have devastating economic consequences on Florida business.
3. Currently, SB1414 and HB777 will have the effect of terminating the opportunity for heavily regulated businesses to breed the reptile species currently listed as conditional species and then sell those captive-bred animals outside of Florida.
4. Florida businesses will lose several million dollars if SB1414 or HB777 passes as it is.
It is very easy to find and contact your legislators. Just go to the links below to get their emails and phone numbers (Capitol/Tallahassee offices).
Find your Representative and then just click “Full Detail” at https://www.myfloridahouse.gov/Sections/Representatives/myrepresentative.aspx
Find your Senator and then just click his/her name for full contact details at https://www.flsenate.gov/Senators/Find
Sample email (please feel free to personalize)
Please send emails from your own emails (just copy/paste below) and also complete and share the quick form at https://ujoin.co/campaigns/820/actions/public.
Subject: Amend HB 777 and SB 1414
Dear Florida legislator,
I ask that you support a floor amendment to SB 1414 and HB 777 as your constituent and a responsible Florida reptile keeper. I appreciate the amendments thus far and we only need one more to avoid severe unintended consequences.
If the SB 1414 or HB 777 pass as currently written it will have devastating economic consequences on Florida business. Currently, SB 1414 and HB 777 will have the effect of terminating the opportunity for heavily regulated businesses to breed the reptiles currently listed as conditional species and then sell those captive-bred animals outside of Florida. Florida businesses will lose several million dollars if SB 1414 or HB 777 passes as is.
Please support a floor amendment to keep the Conditional Species program for reptiles intact! Thank you for realizing the problems with the current SB 1414 and HB 777 language. Have a good day!
PLEASE read everything below for full details and actions to take! AND SHARE THIS!!!
Additionally, Senate Bill 1414 and HB 777 have been filed. SB1414 and HB777 are even worse. Not only do they ban iguanas and tegus, but they also ban any sales and breeding of all species listed as Conditional species. Essentially, the current permit available allowing you to keep, breed, and sell Conditional out of state or to other permit holders would be gone. This is an effort to end ownership of all Conditional species in Florida. And not just currently listed species, but any listed in the future, too. All Conditional Species would now be Prohibited Species.
1. Burmese or Indian python (Python molurus). 2. Reticulated python (Python reticulatus). 3. Northern African python (Python sebae). 4. Southern African python (Python natalensis). 5. Amethystine or scrub python (Morelia amethystinus). 6. Green Anaconda (Eunectes murinus). 7. Nile monitor (Varanus niloticus).
8. red-eared sliders 9. GREEN IGUANA (IGUANA IGUANA). 10. BLACK AND WHITE TEGU (SALVATOR MERIANAE). 11. Any other reptile designated as a conditional or prohibited species by the commission.
While we usually see species listings go through a rulemaking process by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission (FWC), this is a legislative effort that would then amend the FWC regulation.
Note that the SB1414 is the amended bill text which includes ALL tegu lizards (any species of the genera Salvator or Tupinambis)
Sample Messaging Please edit and personalize. Remember to be civil and professional at all times.
NOTE: We appreciate the online petitions but they will serve no role in stopping this. The actions below and our future direction are all that can stop these bills. Also, if you have time to complain on social media then you have more than enough time to do what is below. Take action rather than just complaining!
What to do:
1. Call officials;
2. Email officials;
3. Fax letters;
4. Make meetings with your elected officials;
5. Attend hearings and voice opposition, if possible;
6. Stay updated by joining our free email newsletter (signup at bottom of page) and Like and follow our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/usarkfl;
Remember that even if it is not your species of interest being banned today, it may be tomorrow! Support those in trouble now!
SB1414 call list: (850) 487-5017 (Senator Mayfield's office)
When calling, you can simply state you are opposed to Senate Bill 1414 or you may add some of the messaging below.
You can find all of Senators' contact information at the links below. Just click on a Senator's name and full contact details will appear. You want to contact their Tallahassee offices. Phone calls, faxes, and mailed letters should also be used and are more effective than emails.
Email list: email@example.com, Currey.Kaitlyn@flsenate.gov,
You can find your Florida State Senator by simply typing your address at www.flsenate.gov/Senators/Find. Send messages to your elected officials even if they are not in a committee hearing this bill.
Email subject line sample:
You can easily copy/paste but please personalize.
Dear Senator Mayfield,
SB 1414 repeals the Conditional Species regulation by replacing the current "personal use or for sale for personal use" text and replacing it with "except for educational, research, or eradication or control purposes." Perhaps you are unaware of what this change in text actually does.
The Conditional Species regulation was developed over many months during a collaborative effort between FWC and the herpetocultural industry. This regulation has proven to be absolutely effective for over ten years.
As a responsible reptile owner, I must alert you to the many problems with SB 1414. I realize you have provided an amendment, which is appreciated, but the amendment does not go nearly far enough.
If you are unaware, the legislature is precluded from regulating wildlife by the State Constitution. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, or FWC, holds supreme authority over what the State defines as wild animal life. This includes all species listed in SB 1414. My statement can be verified by reviewing Section 9, Article IV of the Constitution of the State of Florida.
SB1414 is loaded with unintended consequences. While the bills seem to be offering a solution, it is actually creating more problems and fails to address the current dilemma.
1. This bill will encourage the release of non-native reptiles.
2. There is no economic impact study showing the many millions of dollars of lost revenue to Florida businesses!
3. Banning these species encourages a black market and underground, illegal activities.
4. Florida business owners have millions of dollars invested in these species.
5. The overreaching negative impacts upon these businesses must be considered as a termination of their future sales is a taking and they must be reimbursed, which means there must be an economic impact study and restitution.
6. Protection of Florida's native wildlife is of utmost importance but this bill is a backward approach to addressing the issues.
7. This is a grand example of collective punishment in which good and responsible citizens are punished due to the actions of a few bad actors. Rather than actually finding and punishing criminals, a bad law is written which does nothing more than allow legislative grandstanding while creating bigger problems.
Please realize the problems with SB 1414. This bill needs to be amended as it is very misguided!
There is a reason this same exact bill has not passed (or even cleared committee) for the last several years and it because legislators realized this is not the answer. SB 1414 must be amended! Thank you for your time and have a good day.