Congress floats CWD leg­is­la­tion

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - ARKANSAS OUTDOORS -

New bi­par­ti­san leg­is­la­tion in Congress would en­able a na­tional study of chronic wast­ing dis­ease, a fa­tal neu­ro­logic ill­ness that has been de­tected in deer, elk and moose in 26 states.

Se­na­tors John Bar­rasso (R-Wyo.), Michael Ben­net (D-Colo.) and Doug Jones (D-Ala.) in­tro­duced the Se­nate bill (S. 382) on Thurs­day.

U.S. Reps. Ralph Abra­ham (RLa.) and Marc Veasey (D-Texas) in­tro­duced the com­pan­ion bill in H.R. 837.

The bill will di­rect the U.S. Depart­ment of Agri­cul­ture to study how chronic wast­ing dis­ease (CWD) is trans­mit­ted, how quickly it spreads among a pop­u­la­tion, and how eas­ily it in­fects in­di­vid­ual an­i­mals.

“Chronic wast­ing dis­ease is one of the great­est threats fac­ing deer and elk. It also jeop­ar­dizes the vi­tal con­ser­va­tion fund­ing that hunters gen­er­ate through li­cense sales and ex­cise taxes on sport­ing equip­ment,” said Mike Leahy, di­rec­tor for wildlife, hunt­ing, and fish­ing pol­icy for the Na­tional Wildlife Fed­er­a­tion.

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