Washington Cattlemen's Association


NCBA’s Young Cattlemen’s Conference Trip Opportunity

The NCBA Young Cattlemen’s Conference, held May 29 - June 7, is a great opportunity for cattlemen and women between the ages of 25 and 50 to visit segments of the beef industry in other parts of our nation with young cattlemen and women from other states. For more details visit the event’s website here. This year, the Washington Cattlemen’s Association (WCA) will fund one participant to travel to the event. Fill out an application for this awesome opportunity. Completed applications must be received at the WCA office by April 20, 2019.

WCA News


By: Mark Streuli 

Beef day was a HUGE success in so many ways yesterday. Not only did the industry really do itself proud serving some fantastic tri-tip to legislators and staff, but I am finally pleased to report that SB 5959 was passed off the House floor yesterday without any amendments (the committee amendment we were concerned about was removed from the bill). As everyone knows, when it comes to legislation this year, this has been our number one priority. There are so many to people to thank because so many WCA members chipped in to help along this journey, but we certainly wouldn’t be where we are without President Sam Ledgerwood, the WCA Executive Committee and Executive Vice President Sarah Ryan. They aren’t the kind to go looking for thanks, but they sure do deserve it. A HUGE shout-out to them!!

Many legislators helped us on this journey, but a few really made the difference in pushing this across the line, including Senator Warnick, Representative Kretz and Representaive Blake. They really deserve our thanks and appreciation. In addition, please thank WSDA director Derek Sandison. He stood with us at critical times on this, when it could’ve easily gone a different direction. Thank you Director!

 Don’t hold back – please send them a note of appreciation:



Brian.blake@leg.wa.gov (Chair of House Ag Committee)

Derek.sandison@agr.wa.gov (Director of Agriculture)

In addition, you can get your legislators email here to thank them for their support after you see the final roll call on the bill belowhere is a link to their phone numbers and addresses -   https://app.leg.wa.gov/Rosters/Members



Roll Call
SB 5959
Livestock identification
Final Passage

Yeas: 84 Nays: 12 Absent: 0 Excused: 2

Voting Yea: Representatives Appleton, Barkis, Bergquist, Blake, Boehnke, Caldier, Callan, Chambers, Chandler, Cody, Corry, Davis, DeBolt, Dent, Doglio, Dolan, Dye, Entenman, Eslick, Fey, Fitzgibbon, Frame, Gildon, Goehner, Goodman, Graham, Gregerson, Hansen, Harris, Hoff, Hudgins, Irwin, Jenkin, Jinkins, Kilduff, Kirby, Klippert, Kraft, Kretz, Lekanoff, Lovick, MacEwen, Maycumber, Mead, Morgan, Morris, Mosbrucker, Orcutt, Ormsby, Ortiz-Self, Orwall, Pellicciotti, Peterson, Pettigrew, Pollet, Reeves, Riccelli, Robinson, Rude, Ryu, Santos, Schmick, Sells, Senn, Slatter, Smith, Springer, Stanford, Steele, Stokesbary, Stonier, Sullivan, Sutherland, Tarleton, Thai, Tharinger, Valdez, Vick, Volz, Walen, Wilcox, Wylie, Ybarra, Chopp

Voting Nay: Representatives Chapman, Dufault, Leavitt, Macri, McCaslin, Paul, Ramos, Shea, Shewmake, Van Werven, Jim Walsh, Young

 Also Including the Senate Roll Call so folks can thank their Senators as well:


Roll Call
SB 5959
Livestock identification
3rd Reading & Final Passage

Yeas: 43 Nays: 2 Absent: 0 Excused: 4

Voting Yea: Senators Bailey, Becker, Billig, Braun, Brown, Carlyle, Cleveland, Darneille, Das, Dhingra, Fortunato, Frockt, Hasegawa, Hawkins, Hobbs, Holy, Hunt, Keiser, King, Kuderer, Liias, Lovelett, McCoy, Mullet, Nguyen, O`Ban, Palumbo, Pedersen, Randall, Rivers, Rolfes, Saldaña, Salomon, Schoesler, Short, Takko, Van De Wege, Wagoner, Maureen Walsh, Warnick, Wellman, Wilson, C., Zeiger

Voting Nay: Senators Ericksen, Padden

 Please Remind Us – What’s in SB 5959?

 Brief Summary:

The Livestock Advisory Board is expanded to allow two representatives and is required to meet for a minimum of twice a year.There are provisions for dismissal for lack of attendance.

  • Provides for Brand Registration

  • In addition to WSDA inspectors, it provides for field livestock inspectors to be licensed and allowed to provide livestock inspection services.

  • Expands the ECTR system to include all cattle for electronic transactions

  • Provides for Electronic Identification

  • $20 Call Out Fee

  • $4.00 Slick Cattle

  • $1.21 Identified Cattle

  • 10% Across the Board Fee Increase

  • Sunset provisions 2023

 Here is a link to the Bill:  http://lawfilesext.leg.wa.gov/biennium/2019-20/Pdf/Bills/Senate%20Bills/5959.pdf

What’s Next – The Governor

When does a bill reach the governor’s desk?

Before the governor signs a bill, it must first be signed in open session in both the Senate and House. Once the house speaker and senate president sign the bill, it’s delivered to the governor’s office. This process can take several days following the passage of a bill by the Legislature.

How long does the governor have to sign a bill?

Bills that are delivered to the governor more than five days before the Legislature adjourns have five days to be acted on. Bills that are delivered fewer than five days before the Legislature adjourns have 20 days to be acted on by the governor.

How are the five days and the 20 days counted?

Both are counted as calendar days, not business days. Sundays are not counted, but Saturdays and state holidays are counted. 

Livestock Producers Praise Recovery of Gray Wolf as "Conservation Success Story"

The WCA appreciates Acting Secretary Bernhardt and his team at Department of Interior, especially those at the US Fish and Wildlife service for their work to delist the grey wolf using scientific and commercial data. In Washington state we have a collaborative group who helps set protocols for instances when wolves depredate or harass livestock, we appreciate the federal delisting as it puts the management of the wolves into state hands. Ultimately, we hope this action allows us to take a serious look at state delisting. ~ Sam Ledgerwood, WCA President

WASHINGTON (March 6, 2019) – Today Jennifer Houston, president of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, and Bob Skinner, president of the Public Lands Council, released a joint statement in response to the Department of Interior’s announcement that it will publish a gray wolf delisting rule in the Federal Register:

“The recovery of the gray wolf in the United States is a conservation success story. When the federal government collaborates with state wildlife officials and local land managers, it enhances our ability to protect the wildlife and ecosystems that we all cherish. This is exactly how the Endangered Species Act is supposed to work.

“Unfortunately, as ranchers know all too well, the current Endangered Species Act rarely functions as Congress originally intended. Radical environmental activists use an endless cycle of lawsuits and procedural tricks to thwart effective conservation. That is why it has taken so long to delist the gray wolf, even though science has long shown the species had reached stable population levels. That is also why the Endangered Species Act’s overall effectiveness hovers at an abysmal rate of just two percent.

“The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and Public Lands Council would like to commend Acting Secretary Bernhardt and his team for making this science-based decision. We look forward to continuing our work with the Department of Interior and state wildlife agencies as this process moves forward."  

ELD delay for livestock haulers in place until September 30, 2019

TO:                      NCBA Officers, Executive Committee, and State & Breed Affiliates

FROM:                Allison Rivera – DC Office

DATE:                 Thursday, February 14, 2019


Happy Valentine’s Day!


To celebrate this day, the Senate has passed an approps package to fund the rest of the government until September 30th, 2019.  The House is set to vote soon, and: President Donald Trump plans to sign a bipartisan spending deal and then declare a national emergency to fund his border wall, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced Thursday.

The move will avert a government shutdown Friday.

"He is prepared to sign the bill," McConnell said. "He will also be issuing a national emergency declaration at the same time."

This package includes a great Valentine’s Day gift of a continued ELD delay for livestock haulers until September 30, 2019. 

Below is the exact bill language.  Please have haulers print this out and place it in their trucks as proof that they are exempted from the elds.  Much like as it has been, FMCSA will not provide any formal documentation b/c they delay has not been granted by them, but instead Congress. 

 As always, send any questions my way.  Thank you, Allison

SEC. 131. None of the funds appropriated or otherwise made available to the Department of Transportation by this Act or any other Act may be obligated or expended to implement, administer, or enforce the requirements of section 31137 of title 49, United States Code, or any regulation issued by the Secretary pursuant to such section, with respect to the use of electronic logging devices by operators of commercial motor vehicles, as defined in section 18 31132(1) of such title, transporting livestock as defined in section 602 of the Emergency Livestock Feed Assistance Act of 1988 (7 U.S.C. 1471) or insects.


Allison Rivera
Executive Director
Government Affairs
National Cattlemen's Beef Association
Center for Public Policy

Transportation: Petition posted, comment period open

TO:                      NCBA Officers, Executive Committee, and State & Breed Affiliates

FROM:                Allison Rivera – DC Office

DATE:                 Wednesday, February 6, 2019


As of this morning, the petition (which the agency prefers we reference as a request for temporary exemption) submitted by NCBA, AFBF, and LMA to the FMCSA for livestock haulers to achieve additional drive time upon the completion of certain training/documentary requirements has been posted for public comment: https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2019/02/06/2019-01276/hours-of-service-of-drivers-national-cattlemens-beef-association-livestock-marketing-association.


The comment period is scheduled to close on 3/8/19. We will not be seeking any extensions as we want this process to be expedited.  We have been told that the comment period will not be extended or put on hold in the case of another government shutdown, unless the website used for submissions has any issues. They will contact us if this is the case.


To remind you of the details within the petition, it is attached along with a summary document.


I strongly encourage everyone to submit comments.  Although we do want a large volume of comments, unique and well drafted comments mean a great deal to FMCSA aswell.  I can provide helpful comments within the next week or so for you to tweak to give specific examples from your state and your producers, but there are also helpful talking points below and attached.


Again, official comments in support from each state affiliate are requested, as well as comments from individual members. Even if member/producer/trucker comments are very simple and merely voice their concerns with the current situation and their vote of confidence in the request, that is helpful.


Please also reach out to Hill offices who have been supportive on this issue, and encourage them to submit comments in support of the request.  The letters that have already been sent from the hill in support of the petition when it was dropped will be submitted into the system by DOT.  They have reassured us of that.

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.

You can see the first half of the broadcast here and the second half of the broadcast here.

ELD Exemption.png

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 wacattle@kvalley.com.

For information on the ELD Exemption: 

this cow belongs to... (2).jpg

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.


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.

Washington Cattlemen's Association | P.O. Box 96 | Ellensburg, WA 98926 | 509-925-9871

Email us at wacattle@kvalley.com