Story by by By ANNA WILLARD of the East Oregonian
Hermiston mayor opposes slaughterhouse for several reasons — especially the smell
“As of late, Dave Duquette, alleged president of the anti-horse/pro-slaughter organization United Horsemen, has been touting the prospect of destroying his local community of Hermiston Oregon by opening up a predatory horse slaughter plant virtually right in his own backyard. With wide-sweeping boasts of acquiring land, in town, and plans to build a multimillion dollar plant for a product with no market Duquette has run into some local resistance from not only the mainline townsfolk but from the very town mayor himself. Duquette, along with his partner in horse butchering Sue Wallis, is hell bent on acquiring attention and grasping a spotlight, or even a flashlight, with no regard to whether the attention is positive or negative. But one thing is now glaringly true, we have been saying it for years and now it comes to us in bold print, “Horse Slaughter Stinks, right along with Duquette and Wallis; it’s enough to make you lose your lunch” ~ R.T.
Hermiston Mayor Bob Severson opposes the horse slaughterhouse proposed in Hermiston.
The potential odor is the thing that troubles him most, he said Thursday. But the mayor said he opposes the idea of slaughtering horses for consumption itself.
“The biggest thing I’m concerned about is, I don’t want anything with odor or anything like that to detract from the community we have today,” Severson said.
The U.S. in November 2011 lifted a ban on horse slaughter. Soon after, Hermiston resident David Duquette, president of United Horsemen, a non-profit, pro-slaughter group, proposed a slaughterhouse at the intersection of Interstate 84 and Westland Road.
In March, Duquette said outside investors and five Northwest American Indian tribes are backing the plan, which would employ 80-100 full-time workers. Neither the investors nor the tribes have been named. Duquette said an anonymous donor gave the 252 acres proposed as the project site.
Severson said he recognizes a problem with neglected or abandoned horses, and with high hay prices and a suffering economy the problem is compounded. However, Severson said he doesn’t think much of slaughtering horses in general.
“To me a horse is a recreation animal or a work animal. We don’t need to slaughter them for food,” Severson said.
According to the Southwest Farm Press, China, Mexico and Kazakhstan are the world’s top consumers of horse meat. About 4.7 million horses a year are produced for human consumption, the paper reported in December 2011.
Severson also said he wants to see concrete information about how problems like odor will be managed.
“I need to know more rather than they just say so,” he said.
Severson said he has not met with Duquette.
Duquette said odor wouldn’t be an issue. Offal would be cooled and disposed of daily and hides also cooled and hauled weekly.
Severson said a slaughterhouse would do nothing to improve the livability of Hermiston.
“I cannot see where a horse slaughtering plant would do anything to improve our community or our image for attracting new business and industry,” Severson wrote in a letter read May 14 to city council in his absence. Severson wrote in response to a letter to the editor from Kaye Killgore of Portland published May 17 in the East Oregonian. Killgore, who described herself as a frequent visitor to the area and with friends here, wrote that slaughterhouses elsewhere can be environmental nightmares, among other criticisms of Duquette’s plan.
The facility would be 20,000 square-feet and process between 100-150 horses per day. The land is also set to be the site of a rescue and rejuvenation facility employing 20-30 people, Duquette has said.
Severson said the city has turned down other facilities looking to place facilities in Hermiston such as a “humus” plant — a waste composting facility to produce fertilizer.
- Horse Slaughter President and Buddy Reporter Concoct Another Story of Misinformation and Untruths (rtfitchauthor.com)
- Breaking News: Summit of the Slaughter Horse Canceled (rtfitchauthor.com)
- Video: Cynthia MacPerson challenges Sue Wallis’s Horse Slaughter Plant Proposal in Missouri (rtfitchauthor.com)
- Horse Slaughter Increased 38% Over Past Year (rtfitchauthor.com)
- UH President Caught Up in Web of Horse Slaughter Lies (rtfitchauthor.com)
- Radical Wyoming Politician’s Horse Slaughter Plans Challenged in Missouri (rtfitchauthor.com)
- A Stroll Down “Horse Slaughter” Memory Lane (rtfitchauthor.com)
- United Horsemen Slaughter Prez Tanks on PBS Radio Show (rtfitchauthor.com)
- Wyoming Equine Terrorist Tests Legal Limits in Latest Libelous Meltdown (rtfitchauthor.com)