84R3098 JSC-F
  By: Smithee H.B. No. 1436
  relating to appeals regarding dangerous dogs.
         SECTION 1.  Section 822.0421, Health and Safety Code, is
  amended to read as follows:
         Sec. 822.0421.  DETERMINATION THAT DOG IS DANGEROUS. (a) If
  a person reports an incident described by Section 822.041(2), the
  animal control authority may investigate the incident. If, after
  receiving the sworn statements of any witnesses, the animal control
  authority determines the dog is a dangerous dog, the animal control
  authority [it] shall notify the owner in writing of the
  determination [that fact].
         (b)  Notwithstanding any other law, including a municipal
  ordinance, an [An] owner, not later than the 15th day after the date
  the owner is notified that a dog owned by the owner is a dangerous
  dog, may appeal the determination of the animal control authority
  to a justice, county, or municipal court of competent jurisdiction
  and is entitled to a jury trial on request.
         (c)  To file an appeal under Subsection (b), the owner must:
               (1)  file a notice of appeal of the animal control
  authority's dangerous dog determination with the court;
               (2)  attach a copy of the determination from the animal
  control authority; and
               (3)  serve a copy of the notice of appeal on the animal
  control authority by mailing the notice through the United States
  Postal Service.
         (d)  An owner may appeal the decision of the justice[,
  county,] or municipal court under Subsection (b) in the [same]
  manner described by Section 822.0424 [as appeal for other cases
  from the justice, county, or municipal court].
         SECTION 2.  Section 822.0423, Health and Safety Code, is
  amended by adding Subsection (c-1) and amending Subsection (d) to
  read as follows:
         (c-1)  The court shall determine the estimated costs to house
  and care for the impounded dog during the appeal process and shall
  set the amount of bond for an appeal adequate to cover those
  estimated costs.
         (d)  An owner or person filing the action may appeal the
  decision of the municipal or [court,] justice court[, or county
  court] in the manner described by Section 822.0424 [provided for
  the appeal of cases from the municipal, justice, or county court].
         SECTION 3.  Subchapter D, Chapter 822, Health and Safety
  Code, is amended by adding Section 822.0424 to read as follows:
         Sec. 822.0424.  APPEAL. (a)  A party to an appeal under
  Section 822.0421(d) or a hearing under Section 822.0423 may appeal
  the decision to a county court or county court at law in the county
  in which the justice or municipal court is located.
         (b)  As a condition of perfecting an appeal, not later than
  the 10th calendar day after the date the decision is issued, the
  appellant must file a notice of appeal and, if applicable, an appeal
  bond in the amount determined by the court from which the appeal is
         (c)  Notwithstanding any other law, a county court or a
  county court at law has jurisdiction to hear an appeal filed under
  this section.
         SECTION 4.  The change in law made by this Act applies only
  to a determination, decision, or hearing under Section 822.0421 or
  822.0423, Health and Safety Code, as amended by this Act, or Section
  822.0424, Health and Safety Code, as added by this Act, that occurs
  on or after the effective date of this Act. A determination,
  decision, or hearing that occurs before the effective date of this
  Act is governed by the law in effect on the date the determination,
  decision, or hearing occurred, and the former law is continued in
  effect for that purpose.
         SECTION 5.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2015.