A committee of the Oregon House of Representatives voted Tuesday to send a bad bill for wolves to the entire House of Representatives for a vote, possibly tomorrow (Friday, Feb. 12) at 10:30 a.m. Please contact your state Representative today or first thing tomorrow morning and ask him or her to vote against House Bill 4040. If you don't know who your state Representative is, you can find out here.
House Bill 4040 would validate a recent decision by the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission to remove gray wolves from the state list of threatened and endangered species. We oppose the bill primarily because it would interfere with a court review of whether the Fish and Wildlife Commission made the right decision. We think the decision should be subject to review to make sure it was consistent with the law and supported by the evidence. We also think the bill sets a bad precedent by having the Legislature make a political decision on the scientific and legal question of whether a particular species qualifies for listing as threatened or endangered under the state endangered species law.
If we can't stop the bill in the House, it will then be reviewed by the state Senate. We will keep you posted on activities there so you can also tell your state Senator to vote against the bill. (Or feel free to do that now so your Senator knows it might be coming.) You can also find out who your state Senator is at this link.
Sadly, only one of nine members of the House Committee on Agriculture and Natural Resources, Chris Gorsek of Troutdale (thank you, Rep. Gorsek!), had the courage to stand up against this bad bill. See details of the vote here. See the full text of the bill, as passed by the Committee, here.