The appropriations process offers an opportunity to press for policies that can be implemented by providing or withholding funds for agency activities. On this front, AWI has been working to ensure that any funding increase for the Department of the Interior under the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act be used solely for humane, on-the-range management methods such as immunocontraception—and not for unnecessary roundup of wild equines. We are also working to maintain “no-kill” language in bills funding the Bureau of Land Management to prevent the bureau from killing healthy wild horses and burros.
In our continuing attempt to end cruel trapping in national wildlife refuges, we are working with Congress to direct the USFWS to take several steps: establish a pilot project banning body-gripping traps from national wildlife refuges in the Northeast, collect data on the effect of this project on wildlife and refuge use, and compile data regarding the use of animal traps within the National Wildlife Refuge System.
AWI is supporting increased funding for the many law enforcement functions of the Department of Interior, which are vital to combatting the illegal wildlife trade.
With respect to the USDA, AWI seeks to enhance some programs and quash others. We continue to support robust funding for enforcement by the department of the Animal Welfare Act, the Horse Protection Act, and the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act. Conversely, we ask that no funds be allotted for (1) Wildlife Services’ lethal wildlife management activities, (2) inspections at horse slaughter operations that would, in effect, sanction these operations and enable them to do business, (3) licensing of Class B dealers that sell randomly sourced dogs and cats to laboratories, or (4) agricultural research on any live animal at a federal facility unless such research complies with the Animal Welfare Act.