WASHINGTON — Reps. Jim Matheson, D-Utah, and Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, have signed onto legislation that would allow the Western states to manage the now-recovered gray wolf populations themselves.
Both congressmen are cosponsoring HR 6028, sponsored by Rep. Chet Edwards, D-Texas, which prohibits the treatment of the gray wolf as an endangered or threatened species.
"Federal wolf recovery experts have said that the reintroduction of the gray wolf is a success," Matheson said in a news release. "It's time to let state wildlife professionals do their job and balance the needs of predator and prey to maintain a healthy balance."
Wildlife biologists estimate there are 1,700 wolves in several Western states, according to a statement from Chaffetz.
Matheson said a diverse group of scientists and sportsmen groups have studied and documented that not only have gray wolves recovered, their numbers have caused a dramatic drop in elk, deer and moose populations, hurting hunting opportunities and — as a result — harming rural economies that rely on money spent by sportsmen in the West.
"This is a vital issue to farmers, ranchers, sportsmen and outdoor recreationists," Chaffetz said in a statement. "It is appropriate to have the wolf delisted at this time."
Matheson said the legislation is partially a response to legal challenges by some environmental groups who have argued the gray wolf should not be removed from the Endangered Species Act until it has been re-established in all 50 states.
— Joseph M. Dougherty
- Author, activist speaks at Theodore Roosevelt...
- Man accused of killing UTA worker dies in prison
- Women underrepresented across Utah's...
- Mike Lee, US Senate to hold monument meeting...
- 7 tips for summer travel while pregnant
- Area museums help visitors ‘slow down,...
- The tiny town that set out to be Utah's...
- Jim Bennett: One 11-year-old's perspective on...
- Planned Parenthood 'CTR' campaign draws... 59
- New rule sparks debate over teacher... 46
- Utah Democrats headed to 'historic'... 29
- Utah Democrat: Kaine 'kind of person we... 21
- Utah Democrats see opportunity in... 17
- San Juan County residents say 'doodah'... 13
- Women underrepresented across Utah's... 9
- Mike Lee, US Senate to hold monument... 9