“Arizona fights to save their Wild Horses”
Salt River bachelor stallions just horsing around! Picture by SRWHMG photographer Robin O’Donnell
Arizona’s entire congressional delegation is calling on U.S. agriculture officials to look into an ongoing effort to protect wild horses along the Salt River.
Rep. Matt Salmon’s office says the state’s nine congressional representatives sent a letter to U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack on Friday.
Salmon is joined by an Arizona congressional delegation, made up of state lawmakers Trent Franks, Ruben Gallego, Raul Grijalva, Ann Kirkpatrick, Martha McSally, David Schweikert, and Kyrsten Sinema.
The panel wants Vilsack to find out why the U.S. Forest Service
has not followed up on plans to consult with people in the state about a management plan for the horses.
“Our government is a government by, of, and for the people. When the Forest Service decided to round up a valuable local resource, the people’s outcry forced it to halt its plans and promise to consult with our constituents. Sadly, it appears the Forest Service is treating this consultation as a token effort, as no new management plan has been introduced. As we quickly approach the deadline for action, we want to reiterate our calls for the Forest Service to consult with the people directly affected by their actions before implementing any plan.”
Conservationists protested federal officials’ plans in August to remove and possibly auction up to 100 wild horses from the Tonto National Forest
The Forest Service halted the round-up.
Officials said they hoped to work with the Salt River Wild Horse Management Group and other stakeholders on an alternative strategy.