WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Bureau of Land Management (BLM), tasked with the management of America’s wild horses and burros on public lands, released its proposed budget for 2018 which includes a $10 million reduction for its Wild Horse and Burro Management Program and the ability to conduct sales without limitation. View Budget Justification Document (pdf, 11 pp).
In the overview section of its justification document they state:
The BLM also proposes to address the explosive cost growth in the Wild Horse and Burro Management program.
The BLM then calls for a $10 million reduction in spending on its Wild Horse and Burro Management Program stating:
The consistent growth in annual costs for the program is unsustainable and constrains the Bureau’s ability to effectively address competing uses of public lands, as the number of animals on the range and BLM holding facilities grows.
To accomplish its proposed $10 million budget reduction, the BLM suggests:
As such, the budget proposes to give BLM the tools it needs to manage this program in a more cost-effective manner, including the ability to conduct sales without limitations.
In a BLM press release they make it even clearer stating its 2018 budget plan would allow for the humane euthanasia and unrestricted sale of “excess animals.”
The unrestricted sales of excess animals of course opens the door to slaughter.
In its budget justification the BLM discusses further funding decrease methods:
The remainder of the funding decrease will be achieved by reducing gathers, reducing birth control treatments, and other activities deemed inconsistent with prudent management of the program.
The proviso “other activities deemed inconsistent with prudent management of the program” could meaning anything and is dangerous language.
The BLM have demonstrated throughout its history that their idea of wild horse and burro management is to get rid of them any way they can.
The motivation is of course this recurring theme — “competing uses of public lands”.
This is a problem the Department of Interior and its Bureau of Land Management have created for the wild horses and burros. Not the other way around.
There are so few remaining wild horses and burros. In the vastness of America’s public lands, how can they possibly be troubling anybody? They cannot.
No one who has witnessed their destruction over the decades would think there is a federal law protecting them.
“Competing uses” is chiefly — if not entirely — about the ranchers grazing their livestock on public lands, particularly the corporate billion dollar “welfare” ranchers who are leasing these lands for a song and now using their clout on the Hill to destroy what is left of America’s free-roaming wild horses and burros. They are the ones making the loudest and possibly the only noise on “competing uses”.
There’s more. These factions who favor the “unrestricted sale” of wild horses are doing so in anticipation of the return of horse slaughter to U.S. soil in 2018.
Contact your federal lawmakers — including your Representatives and both U.S. Senators — and tell them you oppose the Bureau of Land Management’s 2018 budget proposal that would allow them to sell America’s wild horses and burros without limitation and ask that this language is removed.
This is an instance where your lawmakers must hear from you directly. Call them or use their online contact form. However, calls are really most urgently required.
Calling and Contact Forms
If you know your U.S. Representative and two U.S. Senators, call them via the Capitol switchboard at 202-224-3121.
If you do not know who represents you in Washington, use the links below.
Your call should sound something like this:
• I am opposed to language in the BLM’s proposed budget for 2018 that allows the unlimited sale of our wild horses and burros which exposes them to slaughter.
• I am opposed to language that the remainder of the BLM’s funding decrease will be achieved “by other activities deemed inconsistent with prudent management of the program”.
• Please see that this language is removed from the BLM’s 2018 Budget.
Note: If you have signed a Petition, that is not enough. Please contact your lawmakers directly. Thank you.
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Captured Mustangs. Google search result. Unattributed photo.