WASHINGTON – Representatives Steve Cohen (TN-09) and Dina Titus (NV-01) and Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey today led a letter with 58 fellow Congressional colleagues to Senate and House Appropriations Committee and Interior Subcommittee leaders, requesting Interior Department appropriations language for the final Fiscal Year 2022 spending package that promotes the humane and fiscally responsible management of America’s iconic wild horses and burros.
The House and Senate Interior Appropriations bills both include $11 million of dedicated funding the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) for humane, reversible fertility control vaccines. The BLM spends upwards of $64 million tax dollars annually rounding up wild horses and shifting these animals into holding facilities.
The letter reads in part:
“As you work to complete the final Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22) spending bill, we write to thank you for including $11 million in dedicated funding for the implementation of humane, proven, and reversible immunocontraceptive vaccines in the House and Senate Interior Appropriations bills for the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Wild Horse and Burro (WHB) Program, and we urge you to maintain this funding in the final FY22 spending bill.
“This funding is critical for BLM to implement scientifically supported fertility control to ensure an effective and sustainable herd management strategy. Presently, the BLM WHB Program spends less than one percent of its budget implementing fertility control, instead pursuing a fiscally irresponsible, ineffective, and injurious approach of removing horses and keeping them indefinitely in holding facilities. We remain concerned about BLM’s May 2020 strategy, which called for mass removals of wild horses and burros from the range, including 20,000 next year alone.”
See the entire letter here.