JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – The Missouri Senate passed a bill that imposes a time limit to report videotaped animal abuse.

SB 631 would require anyone witnessing animal abuse to report it to law enforcement within 24 hours. The bill states: “Under the act, employees of animal agricultural operations who videotape what they suspect is animal abuse must provide the recording to a law enforcement agency within 24 hours. Any such recordings must not be edited in any way. An intentional violation of the act is a Class A misdemeanor.”

The House version of the bill (HB 1860) which was passed in April would prevent animal activists from lying on job applications or using other false pretenses to gain access to farms or facilities. Missouri could become the third state after Iowa and Utah to approve such a bill if Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon signs it into law.

HB 1860 also creates two new laws against agricultural crimes: Agriculture production facility fraud and agriculture production facility interference. Under the bill, agriculture production facility fraud is a class B misdemeanor, while agriculture production facility interference is a class A misdemeanor.