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Dog law enforcement director gets new job

| Monday, July 30, 2012, 9:44 p.m.

HARRISBURG — The head of Pennsylvania's Dog Law Enforcement Office has been transferred to another state agency after criticism that she had no experience with animal welfare issues.

Lynn Diehl, who had led the office for 13 months, will begin working as administrator in the Corrections Department next week, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported on Monday.

Diehl is being replaced by Michael Pechart, the state's executive deputy secretary for agriculture, according to an email sent to the Dog Law Advisory Board.

Tom Hickey Sr., an advisory board member, said he welcomed the move.

“They made a terrible mistake when they made that choice,” said Hickey, referring to Diehl. “She didn't understand the issues; she didn't understand enforcement. The head of dog law needs to know the subject matter because it impacts living things.”

Records show the enforcement office didn't revoke or suspend a single license in 2011, while most commercial kennels received only one inspection last year — not the two required by law.

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