Take Action Against HR 5058, the Wild Horse Oversight Act

March for Wild Horses. Image by Richard Wear / Fine Art America.
Wild Horses. Image by Richard Wear / Fine Art America.

Join us and take action right now to oppose HR 5058, the Wild Horse Oversight Act, and send your message directly to Congress.

HR 5058 was filed on July 10, 2014 by US Rep. Chris Stewart (R-Utah).

The bill would allow States and Native American tribes the option of formulating and implementing management plans for wildlife residing within their borders based on their specific needs.

Wild horse advocate Suzanne Roy, director of American Wild Horse Preservation Campaign, says HR 5058 represents the interest of a vocal minority.

“The wild horses and burros are protected on federal land as part of our national heritage, (and) they belong to all Americans, not just a handful of ranchers who view them as competition for cheap grazing on federal land,” she said. “This bill is an attempt to hijack the federal law intended to protect these horses.”

Ranchers and other special interests looking for further and easier ways to profit from the use of public lands as unmolested as possible argue that the wild horses and burros would still be federally protected.

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10 thoughts on “Take Action Against HR 5058, the Wild Horse Oversight Act”

  1. Nancy is correct. Sorry Hyla and Andi – you are wrong or intentionally misrepresenting the effect of this bill.The bill reads “To amend the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act.” And goes on to say, “shall allow the State or federally recognized Indian tribe to assume ALL management and protection functions under this Act regarding wild free-roaming horses and burros on land within the boundaires of the State or federally recognized Indian tribe.” That is pretty clear. This bill then says that “after …assumes such functions, wild free roaming horses and burros shall be managed by the State or federally recognized Indian tribe in accordance with this Act and in the same anner as any other non-federally regulated species regarding functions not specified in this Act.”

    So you have specific language here that provides for loopholes and what could be construed as criminal behavior but “within the law” The Act does specifically prohibit processing into commercial products (1338(a)(4) which provides an EXCEPTION found at 1333(e) which is the sale of excess (over 10 years of age and three strikers) animals (or their remains) to ANY high bidder.

    There you have it. You know as well as I do that those who are limiting this discussion to “estrays and rez horses” are lying through their teeth. This is all about gathering by State and Indian tribes of any wild free-roaming horses (whether estray or rez or BLM horses) and selling them to the highest bidder. I am pretty sure, but don’t have the time right now to check, but the Congressional prohibition of selling horses to buyers who have the intention of slaughtering them is directed at the BLM.

    This bill needs to go down in flames.

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    1. Need we also be reminded of the provision at section 1333(b)(1) which reads “appropriate management levels should be achieved by removasl or destruction of excess animals, or other options (such as sterilization, or natural controls on population levels).” I am sure those pushing this bill will go for the destruction part.

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  2. Sorry, but Andi is incorrect as I read it. Opening line says that this is a bill that would amend the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Protection Act. That act never did cover rez horses and local estrays, and the reservations already are sovereign nations with dominion over their own horses. So it would in fact impact BLM horses and burros, since they are all that is covered by the Act. The States of Nevada and Utah have already made clear what their “management” plan would look like: ship ’em all to slaughter. That’s how the State of Nevada currently manages Virginia Range horses in the Reno-Carson City area. Also, funding almost never follows a transfer of jurisdiction from federal to state, or state to local.

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    1. Hylah, the opening line says “A BILL To amend the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act” – Native American horses were never a part of that Act and still aren’t. Reservations already have control of their own horses. So unless what this is really about is Reservations trying to get State funding to help round up their excess horses, it makes no sense to amend the WFRHBA. So it’s really about something else, using the recent publicity about reservation overpopulation as a spring board.

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  3. This wouldn’t effect the WH&B Act of 1971. It just governs strays and horses on the rez, the way I read it.

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    1. Andi is correct. This has nothing at all to do with BLM horses, just strays and Rez horses.

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    2. Not the way I read it. The opening line says “A BILL To amend the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act” – Native American horses were never a part of that Act and still aren’t. Reservations already have control of their own horses. So unless what this is really about is Reservations trying to get State funding to help round up their excess horses, it makes no sense to amend the WFRHBA. So it’s really about something else, using the recent publicity about reservation overpopulation as a spring board.

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