If SB1175 is signed into law collaborative group may collapse
Today there was meeting of the Idaho Bighorn Sheep/Domestic Sheep Advisory Group which ended early due to concerns of various groups about how Senate Bill 1175 will affect what the group does.
At the present time SB1175 is awaiting Governor Otter’s signature or veto and no-one is sure where he stands. The Idaho Bighorn Sheep/Domestic Sheep Advisory Group was formed at the behest of the Governor to address how to protect both bighorn sheep and domestic sheep but many in the group fear that SB1175 subverts this process and defines the policy of the State of Idaho without the input of all parties.
At the beginning of the meeting Senator Jeff Siddoway, a Republican sheep rancher from Terreton, Idaho and sponsor of SB 1175, was in attendance and was asked to describe what the bill does and to answer other questions. He seemed, to my eyes, uncertain about many of the aspects of the bill and could not answer some pointed questions about it such as what is meant by “appropriate separation” between bighorn sheep and domestic sheep and what exactly is meant by this passage:
It is the policy of the state of Idaho that existing sheep or livestock operations in the area of any bighorn sheep transplant or relocation are recognized and that the potential risk, if any, of disease transmission and loss of bighorn sheep when the same invade domestic livestock or sheep operations is accepted
Specifically, what is meant by transplanted or relocated sheep? Does this refer to sheep that will be transplanted or relocated or does it refer to sheep that have been transplanted or relocated. Also, what does recognizing existing sheep or livestock operations in affected areas mean? Read the rest of this entry »