Public Policy (Legal/Legislative)

Cuomo signs budget to provide $5 million for NY shelters

Cuomo signs budget to provide $5 million for NY shelters

Yesterday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a 2017-18 state budget that includes a little-noticed item—one that until this year never found its way into fine print in the state’s spending plan. It’s a $5 million funding source, designated as the Companion Animal Capital Fund, that provides independent humane societies, SPCAs, and nonprofit and municipal . . . 

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Oklahoma’s “prosperity districts” are not OK

Oklahoma’s “prosperity districts” are not OK

Last November, Oklahoma voters crushed a State Question 777, a proposed constitutional amendment in Oklahoma to create a “right to farm” — a measure to deregulate agriculture in the state on a go-forward basis. Despite a multi-million dollar campaign to pass it, more than 60 percent of voters rejected it, with rural and urban counties . . . 

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Taking USDA’s Wildlife Services program to court

Taking USDA’s Wildlife Services program to court

Last month, a federal agent placed an M-44 cyanide bomb on public lands in eastern Idaho. As intended, it detonated, but the agent missed his target and claimed a couple of unintended victims: a 14-year-old boy, Canyon Mansfield, was sprayed as the poison shot out of the explosive device. He survived, but his dog Casey, . . . 

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Is China warming on animal welfare, while the U.S. is cooling?

Is China warming on animal welfare, while the U.S. is cooling?

Last week the Chinese government published a list of 67 licensed ivory carving factories and retailers set to close by March 31, with the balance of the other operations slated to shutter by December 31. This is part of a rather astonishing turnaround for a nation long regarded as an outlier on animal welfare. There . . . 

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Putting the campaign to help broiler chickens on the front burner

Putting the campaign to help broiler chickens on the front burner

Last summer, I reported on the launch of one of The HSUS’s biggest and most important campaigns in its 63-year history: an effort to improve conditions for the nine billion chickens we raise and slaughter for food each year in this country. These birds — called broilers — represent nine out of every 10 animals . . . 

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This week, lawmakers introduced a swirl of major reforms to help animals, taxpayers

This week, lawmakers introduced a swirl of major reforms to help animals, taxpayers

A few years ago, a group of very special citizens trekked from a number of states to Capitol Hill to lobby for a ban on shark finning in U.S. waters. Some of them had a bit of difficulty getting around, parts of their legs missing. Other took extra time to dress for the occasion, given . . . 

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Scores of federal lawmakers say no to keeping horses sore

Scores of federal lawmakers say no to keeping horses sore

Today, in a show of legislative horsepower, U.S. Reps. Ted Yoho, R-Fla., and Kurt Schrader, D-Ore., introduced the Prevent All Soring Tactics (PAST) Act, HR 1847, with nearly half the lawmakers in the U.S. House joining them in a quest to close loopholes in the almost 50-year-old Horse Protection Act that have enabled the cruelty . . . 

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Ag trade groups bilk farmers out of tens of millions through diversion of check-off dollars

Ag trade groups bilk farmers out of tens of millions through diversion of check-off dollars

Two pair of ideological opposites introduced bills in the U.S. House and Senate yesterday – Mike Lee, R-Utah, and Cory Booker, D-N.J., in the Senate, and Dave Brat, R-Va., and Dina Titus, D-Nev., in the House — to reform a series of federal government programs that have too often taken on the character of a . . . 

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Animal cruelty masquerading as regulatory reform

Animal cruelty masquerading as regulatory reform

As readers of this blog will know and lament, bears and wolves are the latest victims of the anti-regulatory fervor infecting Congress. Last week, in a party-line vote, every Senate Republican voted in favor of a Congressional Review Act resolution rescinding a 2016 U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service rule that banned a host of inhumane . . . 

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USDA using poison explosives to kill wildlife and pets in the West

USDA using poison explosives to kill wildlife and pets in the West

When young Canyon Mansfield and Casey, his three-year-old Lab, headed out together to play in the area behind their home in eastern Idaho, they hardly expected the walk to be their last together. Without notifying a soul, and in violation of their agreement not to place sodium cyanide M-44s on federal public lands, agents with . . . 

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