County FSA offices feel the pinch of government shut down
Thanks to the ongoing Government Shutdown, Farm Service Agency offices closed their doors Friday, and aren’t expected to reopen anytime soon.
Read the rest of the story here.
Several laws have taken effect in Washington state
After the clock struck midnight, Washington state saw a handful of new laws go into effect, ranging from minimum wage changes to paid family medical leave.
Read the whole list here.
Modifications made to sage grouse land use plans
Goal is to better align management for the bird between state and federal agencies.
Read the full story from BEEF Magazine, here.
Trump administration’s WOTUS revisions fail to deliver
Sacramento, California; December 11, 2018: In February 2017, President Trump issued an executive order instructing the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of the Army to revise the overly broad definition of “navigable waters” under the Waters of the United States rule.
Read the full press release here.
Colville National Forest plan too big to corral
Ranchers in northeast Washington have identified what they call a "fatal flaw" in the Forest Service's plan to manage the Colville National Forest: No one can be expected to understand it.
The plan and supporting documents run thousands of pages, notes Chance Gowan, a consultant for the Stevens County Cattlemen's Association. He says he's dedicated well over 40 hours studying the materials and "sadly" reports being sure he's missed something harmful to cattlemen.
Read the full story here.
Blue Mountains Forest Plan likely to be updated
The U.S. Forest Service will present an updated Blue Mountains Forest Plan in 2019 after considering the objections presented in the recent forums.
Read the full story here.
Research concludes cattle are not destroying the ozone layer
Cow burps are destroying the ozone layer — we’ve all heard that one, and frankly, it’s time for the industry to ditch that myth once and for all.
Read the full story here.
Transportation Update: Extending the Electronic Logging Devices Delay for Livestock Haulers
Livestock haulers across the country are currently exempt from implementing electronic logging devices (ELDs). The question is: For how much longer?
A few months ago, NCBA worked closely with allies in Congress to secure a temporary exemption through December 7, 2018. With less than ten days to go before that exemption expires, NCBA has been making the rounds on Capitol Hill to remind lawmakers that a further extension is necessary.
“The livestock industry needs additional time to work with Congress and the Administration on a long-term solution to overly-restrictive Hours of Service rules,” said Executive Director of Government Affairs Allison Rivera. “Extending the ELD implementation delay for livestock haulers will give us more breathing room while that process moves forward.”
A draft fiscal year 2019 government spending bill includes a provision that would delay ELD implementation for livestock haulers until September 30, 2019. Keeping that provision included in any spending bill is an immediate priority.
NCBA is also looking forward to further conversations with the Department of Transportation (DOT) on the recent petition that requests flexibility for livestock haulers on Hours of Service (HOS) requirements. Authored by industry groups including NCBA and the Livestock Marketing Association, the petition asks for increased drive time for livestock haulers and includes a plan for working with the DOT on additional fatigue-management practices. The petition has already garnered bipartisan support in both chambers of Congress (read the letters of support here and here). As a next step, DOT is expected to open a public comment period on the petition.
Wilderness Land Restriction Bill moves forward
The legislation from U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney, R-Wyo. — named the “Restoring Local Input and Access to Public Lands Act” — made it through the House Natural Resource Committee on party lines: 19 Republicans on the committee backed the bill while 11 Democrats opposed it.
Read the whole story here.
HR 6784, the Manage our Wolves Act passes House
HR 6784 passed a House vote Thursday and now moves on the Senate.
To read the press release from WCA, click here.
Ferry County rancher featured in KREM 2 News broadcast
Ron Eslick offers his perspective on the Ferry County wolf issue to lead the reporting package put together by KREM 2 News. The two-part report aired Wednesday and Thursday.
WCA offers to coordinate fire relief donations
ELLENSBURG, Wash. – The Washington Cattlemen’s Association is accepting donations of hay, pasture, pasture seed, or funds for cattlemen or cattlewomen effected by the recent wildfires in Washington state. In the past, the monies donated to the fire relief fund have been used to pay for fencing materials, feed, and veterinary supplies.
“Cattlemen and CattleWomen across the state have been impacted by wildfires. Given the number of acres and people impacted, WCA is honored to revitalize our fire relief fund and coordinate donations of physical commodities,” said Washington Cattlemen’s Executive Vice President Sarah Ryan. “Cattlemen support their communities and the economy of the state, this provides an opportunity for the communities to give back.”
A prime example of the devastation this wildfire season has caused is Douglas County, where cattlemen and cattlewomen have lost nearly all their grazing ground for the year.
Anyone interested in providing support to cattlemen and cattlewomen in Washington state, can contact the Washington Cattlemen’s Association office to coordinate matching a donor with a person in need of relief.
The Washington Cattlemen’s Association office is located at 1301 N. Dolarway Rd., Ellensburg, WA 98926, can be reached via phone at 509-925-9871 or via email at email@example.com.
For information on the ELD Exemption:
Report From the WA State Department of Agriculture
by Dr. Amber Itle, Interim Assistant State Veterinarian
Livestock Inspection Program - Financial Status
The financial status of the Livestock Inspection program has been a topic of conversation for several years. Former analysis provided to the LID Advisory Board in 2016 projected a budget shortfall of - $695,000 by the end of the 2017-19 biennium with no additional revenue.
Following series of listening sessions on Animal Disease Traceability, USDA releases report
Dr. Amber Itle
Assistant State Veterinarian
In the spring of 2017, the U.S. Department of Agriculture hosted a series of listening sessions across the country to hear from the agriculture industry about animal disease traceability.
The USDA has now compiled this information into a 30-page report, “Animal Disease Traceability: Summary of Program Reviews and Proposed Directions from State-Federal Working Group,” which it released in April. The report provides an overview of the Animal Disease Traceability Program and preliminary recommendations of the State-Federal Animal Disease Traceability Working Group.
Read more in the upcoming Ketch Pen.
TOP QUESTIONS ABOUT THE BEEF CHECKOFF:
Over the past few years we have received many questions about how the Beef Checkoff functions. Not as many, however, about the demand building work that is conducted on your behalf, through the research, promotion and education work the program is designed to do. The questions we are receiving focus on who does and does not pay and who should and should not pay!
WCA Takes Stance on Reintroduction of Grizzly Bear's in WA State
The Washington Cattlemen’s Association strongly opposes the proposed action of the US Fish and Wildlife Service and Parks Service to re-introduce Grizzly Bears into Washington State. The WCA does not think it is proper or prudent to reintroduce an apex predator into Washington State. The WCA believes that Grizzly Bear recover and re-colonization must occur naturally with human augmentation.