Rep. Hageman: Disconnect exists between states, federal agencies over Endangered Species Act

Representative Harriet Hageman explains how wildlife resources are managed in her area of the country.

The United States farm country can feel like a whole different world compared to our nation’s highly-populated coastal regions. Rep. Harriet Hageman, the Republican from Wyoming, says this is a feeling she knows all too well.

The feeling especially applies, as Rep.Hageman explains, to her state’s work rehabilitating the Grizzly bear population to meet the goals of the federally-mandated Endangered Species Act, as well as shouldering most of the financial burden of those efforts.

“Well, I think that’s absolutely fair—and I noticed that in my committee work, working with folks from the other side—they don’t understand,” Rep. Hageman said. “Or they have, up to this point, at least—they feign not to understand that wildlife is managed again by state agencies.”

Hagemen used the Wyoming Game and Fish Department as an example, saying, even for endangered or threatened species, there aren’t federal employees traveling around the state protecting grizzly bears.

“Wyoming has spent $59 million recovering the grizzly bear. The federal government has spent $100,000. Yet, it’s the federal government and the Fish and Wildlife Service [who] refuses to delist the Grizzly bear — despite the fact that we met our recovery goals almost a quarter century ago,” she explained.

Rep. Hageman sits on the committee for Water, Wildlife, and Fisheries, as well as serves as chairperson for the Indian and Insular Affairs subcommittee.

“So here we are, 25 years later. We have double the population of Grizzly bears that was included in that recovery plan, and we can’t do this because the environmental groups again use the Endangered Species Act to control activities on private land.”

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