(AP) A proposal to regulate ownership of exotic animals in Ohio is getting its first hearing before State Senators.
Efforts to strengthen the state's law took on new urgency in October when authorities were forced to kill 48 wild animals, after their owner Terry Thompson freed them from his Kopchak Road farm and then committed suicide.
Republican State Senator Troy Balderson of Zanesville introduced the bill to ban new ownership of exotic animals in the state.
Balderson's legislation would ban current owners of large animals from keeping the creatures unless they met strict care taking standards beginning in 2014. Owners also would have to pass a background check to acquire a permit for the animals.