Appropriations Letter Shows Widespread Support for WS
March 2, 2018
The American Sheep Industry Association sponsored a letter – with 208 additional livestock, aviation, sportsmen, civil, conservation and commodity stakeholders – to the House and Senate appropriations committee and subcommittee members urging their continued support for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Wildlife Services.
ASI President Mike Corn, said this letter shows the broad impact Wildlife Services has on the American economy.
“For sheep producers, Wildlife Services’ predation management program is critically important to our ability to maintain profitability and protect the safety of our flock,” Corn said. “Wildlife Services’ efforts go far beyond just protecting the livestock industry. Their work keeps Americans safe in the air through their aviation program, protects rural and urban civil infrastructure, protects critical wildlife habitat for recreation, and keeps our food supply safe by working with aquaculture, dairy and commodity row crop producers.”
Wildlife causes more than $12.8 billion in damage each year to natural resources, public infrastructure, private property and agriculture. Wildlife Services works to prevent, minimize or manage this damage and protect human health and safety from conflicts with wildlife.
“Every year, Wildlife Services is called to do more, often with fewer resources available,” said Corn. “In FY 2017, the agency conducted more than 70,000 technical assistance projects to reduce wildlife damage to property across the country; including schools, homes, roads, airport and utility systems. That is a 5-percent increase from FY 2016. While Wildlife Services has more than 4,600 cooperative agreements to help cost-share many of these projects, we will work to ensure this program has the federal resources it needs.”
ASI is asking Congress to fully fund Wildlife Services in the fiscal year 2019 appropriations’ process, plus an increase of $3.4 million in National Environmental Policy Act compliance costs.
The House and Senate appropriations letters can be found at http://box5119.temp.domains/~leemiles/leemiles, under ASI Positions, Wildlife Services, or at https://d1cqrq366w3ike.cloudfront.net/http/DOCUMENT/SheepUSA/Wildlife%20Services%20Support%20Ltr%202018%20Senate%20Final.pdf.
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