Cross-posted from Las Vegas Sun News
WRITTEN BY CY RYAN
A state senator from Las Vegas believes the wild horses and burros roaming the range in Nevada “are living symbols of freedom and our American Western heritage.”
Democrat Sen. Mark Manendo says limiting their number “may jeopardize their genetic diversity, health and long-term survival in the state of Nevada.”
Manendo says setting up sanctuaries would draw visitors for an up-close look at the free-roaming mustangs.
His joint resolution, made public Thursday, is ready for introduction on the first day of the 2013 Legislature starting Feb. 4.
The resolution was prompted by the controversy surrounding the roundup of wild horses by the Bureau of Land Management and the fear that 41 horses up for auction might end up in slaughter plants.
Manendo said he had asked for the resolution to be drafted earlier but the final version was not ready until this week.
There were 41 “feral” or “estray” horses that were captured on mostly private lands by the Department of Agriculture.
And there have been complaints by wild horse advocates that the BLM mistreats the mustangs taken into custody on public lands and shipped out of state.
Manendo’s resolution says “building eco-sanctuaries that enable the public to view and photograph wild horses and burros may provide a much-needed boost to the Nevada economy.”
Senate Joint Resolution 1, if passed by both houses of the Legislature, would not have the effect of a law but merely encourages advocates, the state and federal agencies to work together to preserve the horses.
The auction Wednesday raised about $10,000, said state Agriculture Director Jim Barbee. The money goes into an estray horse fund. Continue reading >>