Bill Protecting Salt River Herd Signed

The bill is designed to protect the herd and place the animals under local and U.S. Forest Service jurisdiction.

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Legislation designed to protect Arizona’s Salt River horse herd and place the animals under local law enforcement and U.S. Forest Service (USFS) jurisdiction  has been signed into law.

Since 1971, Congress has federally protected wild horses and burros and placed them under Bureau of Land Management jurisdiction. However, feral horses, such as the Salt River herd, derived from domestic horses that were turned out or escaped their owners are not covered by the federal law.

In January Arizona State Representative Kelly Townsend introduced HB 2340, which makes it unlawful to harass, shoot, injure, or slaughter a Salt River horse and places the animals under the jurisdiction of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Department and the USFS. The legislation also states that The legislation also states that no one can capture or euthanize a member of the herd without written authorization from either of those agencies; the agencies can only grant permission when their authorization for humane purposes.

The Arizona House of Representatives approved HB 2340 in February, and it was approved by the state Senate in April

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Written by:

Pat Raia is a veteran journalist who enjoys covering equine welfare, industry, and news. In her spare time, she enjoys riding her Tennessee Walking Horse, Sonny.

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