A city with a nearly-20-year-old ban on pit bulls is set to vote on lifting it permanently this week.

The City of Muscatine has banned residents from having pet pit bulls within city limits since 2003. Then in January, city council members voted to temporarily lift the ban.

Now, they’re deciding whether to get rid of it.

Vanessa Lopez lives in Muscatine, and she’s been raising awareness on the pit bull issue since 2016. “I’m very happy with the progress we’ve made so far,” Lopez said. “It’s been a long time coming. I’m trying to get as many people as possible to show up this Thursday, whether it’s in person or online, just to come show their support.”

On Thursday, the city council will vote on an ordinance that would remove Title 6, Chapter 9, preventing residents from owning pit bulls in the city.

If the reading is passed this Thursday, the council will hear the second reading April 21. The third and final reading will be on May 5. Depending on the vote, the council’s decision will be published, and that’s when the law will go into effect.

On Jan. 13, Muscatine City Council members voted 5-2 to temporarily lift the city’s ban.

Chris McGinnis, director of the Muscatine Humane Society, said that since that day, they’ve taken in seven pit bulls, and six in recent weeks. “All of these dogs that came in – the six pit bulls – none of them had anything,” McGinnis said. “No collar, no tags, no microchip.”

The temporary ban on pit bulls ends May 11.