For the second straight week, a bill calling for a horse ban on city streets was debated at City Hall. The city's Streets, Traffic and Refuse aldermanic committee is looking at the issue. On Tuesday, a hearing was held on the proposal. Several people voiced their opinion, those for and those against the ban.
Those for the ban said they were concerned about the welfare of the horses and blame the carriage companies for not obeying regulations such as not having the horses give rides in extreme heat and not operating during rush hour.
Several carriage company owners spoke at the hearing. Many of them said it would be unfair to ban the horses and pointed to more oversight and clear regulations as an alternative. The companies said they don't know who actually regulates them.
"Enforcing regulations is one thing, banning an industry outright is wrong, unfair and frankly is an attack on small business and tourism in the city of St. Louis," said an opponent of the ban.
"No one is regulating these horse-drawn carriage industries, they know that, they are breaking the rules and they don't care. All at the expense at animals," said another speaker.
Some of the aldermen on the committee expressed their desire for the city and carriage companies to sit down with one another and establish rules and guidelines.
To ban horses from city streets, the bill would need to be voted out of committee and approved by the full board of aldermen.