We are getting different reports on the Interior budget now, Chris Stewart introduced a bill, and listening to the hearing where he did, they CLEARLY spoke about humane euthanasia of our wild horses in holding…however, we cannot find it in the Bill that has been approved by the full House Committee. In fact, 3 of us have now scoured the internet for the amendment he offered up to looks at the specific language in it, because we heard them vote it in, Rep Stewart even bragged about it on social media posts…however, it is NOWHERE to be found. So, we had our UT person contact his office to see if we can get a copy of the amendment, and his own office asked CAES, Jen Howe “You know it didn’t pass right” — We are scratching our heads, we went back and watched it again, it is the July 18 full committee hearing for the Interior appropriations, it definitely passed that round, and there have been no meetings on the Interior budget since then, in fact at the end of the hearing they passed the entire bill. So we are at a loss right now and worried about the fact that we cannot find the amendment anywhere. What does it say? We heard them discussing humane euthanasia, but claiming no slaughter, which is not what was approved according to the language in the Interior FY 2018 Bill passed by the house on 18, July, 2017.

Are you confused? WE ARE!

The Agriculture budget was much easier. It is passed the markup rounds of the Senate, and Senator Udall did get his amendment passed. He introduced language to stop and federal funds from going to USDA inspection for horses thereby stopping the possibility of slaughterhouses reopening in this country. He did not push for the SAFE Act so they can still be transported to slaughter. He also left out that tiny detail, you know, the one that say BLM can’t use funds for the destruction of healthy or unadoptable wild horses.There is vague language in the Interior budget prohibiting that however. The problem we see with the 2 bills right now is the transfer of wild horses to state agencies for use as work horses, and when they “say” those agencies cannot slaughter them….and that they have lost their federal protection, it means they cannot enforce the not going to slaughter.

It is a pesky little detail of law that says the federal government can’t tell the state what to do with their property. Sorry, I know that sounds awful, but wild horses are legally labelled as ‘property’. The bill doesn’t include any finances for an agency to oversee the program, track the horses or any other situation in which the statement ‘may not’ be used as commercial products, is not enforceable!

What can you do?
Write, call, fax, tweet your senators, and the senators on the appropriations committee (committee & contacts at the bottom of this article) and tell them:

The transfer of animals to agencies for work purposes or any other purpose must be stricken from the Interior Budget proposal. As approved by the House, nothing in the budget allows for oversight, tracking or any method for accountability, to make sure the wild horses do not end up being sent to slaughter. They must retain federal protections if transferred to an ‘entity’ and that cannot be done without changing the “title” policy for a wild horse, giving ownership to the purchaser or entity receiving the horse.

  • List for Senators on the Subcommittee for the Agriculture Approps Bill: (The Chairman is priority, then ranking member and then the rest of the subcommittee)
    You can go to each of their websites and click on contact me. I believe there was only one that asked for a zip code, but you can mail them from their websites. they can all be found @ Senate Appropriation Members

John Hoeven, Chairman
P: 202-224-2551

Jeff Merkley, Ranking Member
Phone: (202) 224-3753
Fax: (202) 228-3997

Thad Cochran
Phone: (202) 224-5054

Patrick Leahy
Phone: (202) 224-4242

Mitch McConnell
Phone: (202) 224-2541
Fax: (202) 224-2499

Dianne Feinstein
Phone: (202) 224-3841
Fax: (202) 228-3954

Susan Collins
Main: (202)224-2523
Fax: (202)224-2693

Jon Tester
Phone: (202) 224-2644
Fax: (202) 224-8594

(202) 224-6621

Roy Blunt
Phone: (202) 224-5721

Jerry Moran
Phone: (202) 224-6521
Fax: (202) 228-6966

Tammy Baldwin
Phone: (202) 224-5653

Marco Rubio
(202) 224-3041