MAR 23 1998 The Honorable Alfonse M. D'Amato United States Senate Washington, D.C.

20510-3202 Dear Senator D'Amato: I am replying, in duplicate and with your original enclosures, to your inquiry on behalf of your constituent, Ms. XXX , of XXX , New York. Ms. XXX also filed her complaint directly with our department. She raises issues about the licensing of service animals used by persons with disabilities, and also alleges discrimination on the basis of disability by the Stanford Free Library. Please excuse our delay in responding. Ms. XXX correspondence summarizes a dispute with local government officials about the status of her service dog and whether or not it will be licensed or certified by New York as a Medical Assistance Dog. Her correspondence further refers to efforts by the Town of Stanford supervisor to "revoke" her dog's license. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) does not require States to establish licensing or certification programs for service animals. Our review of the letter Ms. XXX received from the Stanford Town Supervisor, Mr. Kelly, shows that he is referring to State and local laws that require dogs to be licensed generally, whether or not the animal functions as a service animal for a person with disabilities. Thus, the dispute described by Ms. XXX about her dog's licensing does not raise an issue cognizable under the ADA. On the other hand, under titles II and III of the ADA, both public entities (State and local governments) and public accommodations (private businesses) are required to admit to their facilities animals that are considered service animals as defined by the ADA (any guide dog, signal dog, or other animal individually trained to provide assistance to an individual with a disability), regardless of whether they have been licensed or certified by a State or local government. The incident described by Ms. XXX occurring at her local library thus raises issues that may be a violation of the ADA.

cc: Records, Chrono, Wodatch, McDowney, Talian, FOIA talian\myfiles\congress\f-dama XXX .ny.wpd\sc. YOUNG-PARRAN -2Ms. XXX allegations about the Stanford Free Library are covered by title II of the ADA or Federal laws prohibiting discrimination in State or local programs that receive Federal financial assistance. The title II implementing regulation delegates to the Department of Education responsibility for complaints relating to educational programs, services, and regulatory activities, including libraries. Accordingly, we have referred this matter to that agency for investigation. We have enclosed a copy of our referral letter and our letter to Ms. XXX for your information. I hope this information will assist you in responding to your constituent. Sincerely, Bill Lann Lee Acting Assistant Attorney General Civil Rights Division Enclosures