With the American Sheep Industry Association's support, the Western Governors' Association (WGA), at its summer meeting, developed policy supporting the Wildlife Services (WS) program of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
"We want to thank Govs. Butch Otter (Idaho) and Brian Schweitzer (Mont.) for introducing this resolution to the other western governors," commented Peter Orwick, ASI executive director. "We continue to broaden the coalition of organizations supporting the protection of livestock and the management of wildlife damage, and we are very pleased that the WGA has issued supportive policy. State governments are a critical partner with county and federal governments in the USDA WS program."
The governors acknowledged the importance of the role WS plays in programs requiring interagency coordination related to the management of wildlife and supports the continued funding of the agency. They further encouraged Congress and the administration to strengthen the WS program for the benefit of the American public opposing any attempts to limit the effectiveness of WS in performing its wildlife damage management responsibilities without the agreement of the affected states.