Supporters of Kentucky SB 139 respond to their critics in Blood-Horse article

FRANKFORT, KY — Kentuckians please take action.

In an article posted online by the Blood-Horse [1] it states:

A Kentucky bill that would uniformly designate horses as livestock has been approved by both houses of the legislature and now awaits the signature of Gov. Matt Bevin.

Once the legislation (SB 139) becomes law, it would provide the groundwork for state lawmakers to move forward on related tax reforms that have the potential to save horse industry participants millions of dollars.

We reiterate. They need not change the horse’s status in Kentucky from a domestic animal to a livestock animal in order to accomplish this. They could have done the reverse.

Instead of demoting the status of the horse Kentucky lawmakers could have elevated it recognizing the contributions of the horse industry to the Commonwealth by giving the participants the tax breaks they seek.

This also from the same article:

Currently the sales taxes on horse feed and supplies generates about $18 million annually. All other livestock are exempt from sales tax on those same necessities.

Whose pockets are these millions coming out of? And this in a State that is routinely listed as one of the ten poorest in the US.

The Blood-Horse continues:

Sen. Robin Webb, an accomplished horsewoman from Carter County, sponsored the bill, which she said provides badly needed consistency across all statutes.

Sen. Robin Webb. Source: The Paulick Report.
Sen. Robin Webb. Source: The Paulick Report.

This statement is particularly rich. Webb is accomplished alright, accomplished in not only committing horse abuse but also publicly sanctioning it.

Webb was cited for horse soring violations, a particularly heinous type of abuse meted out to Tennessee Walking Horses [2]. She was called the “Big Lick Queen” in a Lexington-Herald Leader article [3]. Webb “even defended the horrifying tape that showed Jackie McConnell, who is now a felon, beating and torturing horses.” [4].

No, we do not want someone like Sen. Webb setting the standard for horse cruelty in Kentucky or anywhere else.  Kentucky lawmakers are surely aware of Webb’s background.

Here’s another look into how the notorious Webb thinks from the cited article:

“ . . . some animal rights groups have tried to position the legislation as a backdoor to permit horse slaughter.

“That is not what this bill is about,” she said. “There are other livestock animals that are not raised for food, like alpacas or llamas. Whatever else is being said is just rhetoric to sensationalize and raise money.”

Classifying an animal as livestock does not mean they will be slaughtered for food but they can be slaughtered for food. That opens the door.

Here is another interesting question. Why are kill buyers with feedlots in Kentucky who supply slaughter plants with horses happy about SB 139? But that’s only hearsay and can’t be relied on.

Kentucky Speaker Pro Tem David Osborne of Oldham County was noted as saying in the article:

Osborne also stressed the bill in no way opens a door for horse slaughter nor weakens any horse protection laws. He said the same day SB 139 was approved unanimously, the legislature also passed HB 200, which would make it easier for local officials to intervene and remove horses in abuse and neglect cases.

HB 200 was written to, “Amend KRS 525.130, relating to cruelty to animals in the second degree, to allow a court to order an offender to pay restitution for the upkeep of a horse involved in the offense and terminate the offender’s interest in the horse involved in the offense.” [5]

Getting a court order is very difficult as we have seen in past horse abuse cases across the country concerning all breeds but particularly in Tennessee and Kentucky. We will be testing this at once should it become law and see if it actually helps.

Then there’s these individuals from Kentucky Equine Education Project:

KEEP chairman Corey Johnsen. “Many KEEP members have been instrumental in getting this legislation to this point, but we owe particular recognition to Frank Penn for being a tireless leader and advocate on this issue from the start.”

“Having horses and equines included as livestock in Kentucky law has been a key policy priority for KEEP since its founding over 12 years ago,” said Penn, a KEEP board member and chairman of the organization’s Equine Sales Tax Equity Task Force. “I applaud the Kentucky legislature for their unanimous support of SB 139 and recognizing horses’ rightful place along side other agriculture commodities in Kentucky.”

The horses’ rightful place along side other agriculture commodities in Kentucky. You get the drift, right?

If Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin signs SB 139 into law, we are ready to take immediate action to test these ideas.

We will see what their motivation truly is. Perhaps they will prove us wrong. Nothing would make us happier.

In the meantime, if you are a Kentucky resident please take action. Do not delay! See below.

[1] https://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/articles/220493/livestock-designation-for-horses-vital-for-kentucky
[2] http://www.kentucky.com/news/business/article44397153.html
[3]http://www.chattanoogan.com/2013/1/23/242756/Roy-Exum-Senator-Just-Like-Lance.aspx
[4] See also 3.
[5] https://legiscan.com/KY/bill/HB200/2017

KENTUCKIANS CONTACT GOVERNOR MATT BEVIN
Tell Him You OPPOSE SB 139 Becoming Law — VETO SB 139

Online Email Form

http://governor.ky.gov/Pages/contact.aspx

Twitter @GovMattBevin

Phone/Fax
Main Line: (502) 564-2611
Fax: (502) 564-2517​
TDD: (502) 564-9551

TRACK SB 139
https://legiscan.com/KY/bill/SB139/2017

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Kentucky bill reducing horses to livestock sent to Governor to sign into law

FRANKFORT, KY — Take action. Contact Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin saying you OPPOSE SB 139 becoming law.

On March 15, 2017, SB 139, the Kentucky State Bill reducing horses to livestock — removing what precious few protections they have — was sent to the Governor’s Office to sign into law.

Kentucky already has an abysmal record when it comes to animal protection laws and enforcement. If this becomes law it may deliver a black eye to Kentucky that it may never recover from.

SB 139 passed both the Kentucky State Senate Agriculture Committee and Kentucky State House Agriculture unanimously.

We cannot find that a single negative vote was cast against a bill so insensitive to the well being of horses in the Kentucky State House or Senate although Kentuckians raised their voices in opposition to it.

The State legislator who introduced SB 139, Sen. Robin Webb (D-Grayson), and pushed it through is herself an animal abuser. In 2013 Webb was cited for violations of the Horse Protection Act for evidence of horse soring.

Another issue concerning SB 139 reducing the status of horses to livestock is that it paves the way for horses to be slaughtered in Kentucky.

Securing livestock classification has been among the top policy priorities of the Kentucky Equine Education Project since its 2004 creation. In horse circles KEEP is known to be pro horse slaughter.

A KEEP board member said, “I applaud the Kentucky legislature for their unanimous support of SB 139 and recognizing horses’ rightful place along side other agriculture commodities in Kentucky.”

Others in Kentucky’s horse industry who have cheered loudly and lustily in support of this move say it is only about tax breaks and incentives. However, they did not have to put Kentucky’s horses at risk to do this.

Kentucky lawmakers could have thought outside the box and elevated the horse’s status by giving them their own unique classification apart from other animals, then awarded members of the State’s horse industry with all the perks in the world, and at the same time set the standard for other States to follow.

However, this never occurred to any of them because they do not really value the horse at all.

How shameful.

All of this in a State who built its reputation on the back of the horse, is home to the Kentucky Derby and uses the horse in its logo.

CONTACT KENTUCKY GOVERNOR MATT BEVIN
State You OPPOSE SB 139 Becoming Law

Online Email Form

http://governor.ky.gov/Pages/contact.aspx

Twitter @GovMattBevin

Phone/Fax
Main Line: (502) 564-2611
Fax: (502) 564-2517​
TDD: (502) 564-9551

TRACK SB 139
https://legiscan.com/KY/bill/SB139/2017

Uncommonly good comments on Kentucky bill SB 139

In addition to the many excellent thoughts expressed on Tuesday’s Horse here are uncommonly good comments that stood out to us concerning SB139 the bill reclassifying horses as livestock.

“KEEP is just another pro-slaughter organization cloaked in the name of care and education by the racing community. Terribly disappointed they don’t value their horses enough to mandate humane euthanasia as an end-of-life protocol. AAEP is shameless. Veterinarians make a fortune off of horses and then instead of treating them to a humane death send them off to a slaughter plant … what cowards. I’d be interested to know if everyone on this thread has sat down and watched how horse is slaughtered… And if so how you could possibly justify it as a humane end-of-life. The livestock designation simply makes it easier to ship to kill and affords no protections whatsoever for domesticated Equine… Which to my knowledge is exactly what racehorses are. If KEEP had any moral compass they’d fight for a companion designation for our horses.” —SusanKayne

Read more about KEEP at So happy together: Supporters of Kentucky state bill SB139 »

“This mean a politician owns A slaughter plant?” —Bob in reply to SusanKayne

“The Senate chose to classify the horses with the word livestock so the people who gave them a lot of money can treat the horses with extreme abuse and extreme cruelty; just like they can get away with doing to the other animals, the cows and the pigs.” —Janine Hernandez

“Racehorses are domesticated. It is ridiculous for them to be classified as livestock and by doing so the racehorse virtually has very little, if any, protection for its welfare.” —Lehane in reply to Janine Hernandez

“What does this mean for horse abuse?” —ziggypop

“It gives the abusers the green light”. —Lehane in reply to ziggypop

Comment Source: http://www.paulickreport.com/news/the-biz/kentucky-senate-agriculture-committee-passes-bill-designate-equines-livestock/

TAKE ACTION

Keep the momentum against this bill going. Track SB193 here.

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Safe Haven takes in horses during Matthew

Reported by KHOU-TV, Ch. 11, Houston, Texas

HIGH POINT, NC — As people on the coast prepare for Hurricane Matthew, volunteers at Safe Haven Equine Rescue and Retirement are preparing for more horses.

The rescue is taking in horses that are in Matthew’s path. They already have six on the way and are expecting even more.

“We’ve got a couple of pastures already waiting on them that are empty,” Gin Wiltsey said.

Wiltsey said empty stables and pastures could be full by the weekend. Safe Haven and two other farms are working together to help home the horses. They said they can take around thirty.

“We saw that this hurricane, Hurricane Matthew, is developing and you know the first thing I thought is ‘well, dogs and cats we can put in our cars and evacuate and leave.’ When you look at an animal this size that’s not going in a car,” she said.

Wiltsey said it’s dangerous to leave an equine companion in the path of a major storm. Fences could blow over and horses could escape. Or structures, like barns, could crumble. Instead these animals will have a safe haven in the Triad. Read more »


RELATED READING
Disaster Preparedness for Horses
http://horsefund.org/disaster-preparedness-for-horses.php

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