A large group of animal care takers is saying no to measure 5, which deals with prevention of animal cruelty.
If passed the measure would make it a class C felony for an individual to intentionally harm a living dog, cat or horse.
Reporter Sarah Gustin explains why so many organizations say the measure could be bad for animal agriculture.
(Julie Ellingson / ND Stockmen's Association) "We make our living taking care of animals everyday, so the proper treatment of animals is ultimately important to us. This is a very important issue. We want to make sure that animals are cared for, but Measure 5 is not the right answer to make sure that happens."
North Dakota Animal Stewards is a coalition of farmers, ranchers, vets and pet owners who oppose the ballot initiative.
The North Dakota Stockmen's Association is one organization involved with North Dakota Animal Stewards.
Julie Ellingson is the executive vice president of the association.
Ellingson says the Measure won't improve animal treatment because it only applies to dogs, cats and horses, is silent on the most common forms of mistreatment, and was written by a national animal rights group.
(Julie Ellingson / ND Stockmen's Association) "The Stockmen's Association recognized early on that the language is written in a way that can actually cause some problems for those who take care of animals. Farmers, ranchers, sportsmen and other interests. I think there is a better approach than Measure 5 provides."
(Jason Schmidt / Rancher) "It's hard to actually support something that is a couple of paragraphs long that will have implications for 7 years on the books, as ballot initiatives are. If you do something through the legislative process at least you have an open honest discussion and everyone has a chance to be a part of it."
Rancher Jason Schmidt also opposes the proposed measure.
Schmidt says he's against Measure 5 because of how the initiative could effect his job.
And believes North Dakotans should write North Dakota laws.
(Jason Schmidt / Rancher) "Nobody supports abusing animals. Especially within the livestock community. We live with them. They are lively hood. We take care of them day in and day out. We don't want to see that happen. But we think North Dakotans are pretty darn good at solving our own problems. We are very pragmatic people and we solve our own problems and we think that any laws that are changed should be written by North Dakotans, for North Dakotans."
To learn more about Measure 5, North Dakota Animal Stewards is hosting an informational meeting tonight at Kist Livestock at 7:30.