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For Immediate Release
Date: January 7, 2015

Contact: Steven D. Smith
Steven.Smith@mail.house.gov

 Rep. Gosar Supports Arizona’s Intent to Sue USFWS over Failure to Update Mexican Wolf Recovery Plan 

“The agency has failed to comply with an updated plan despite acknowledging that the current plan is not in compliance” 

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, U.S. Congressman Paul A. Gosar, D.D.S. (AZ-04) released the following statement after the Arizona Game and Fish Department served a Notice of Intent with the secretary of the Department of Interior and director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The action was taken in an effort to support development of an updated recovery plan:
  
“The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) has been using the same flawed recovery plan for the Mexican Wolf since the early 1980’s. This plan is not based on the best available science and is significantly out of date. Officials in Arizona have been calling for an updated plan for years which includes matrices that if met, will allow for delisting. The agency has failed to comply with an updated plan despite acknowledging that the current plan is not in compliance. The State had no choice but to issue a notice with intent to sue.

“Without an updated plan that includes recovery criteria, the Mexican Wolf will remain on the Endangered Species list in perpetuity. To make matters worse, a recent proposal to increase the geographic boundaries for the Mexican Wolf will result in huge swaths of lands becoming blocked off for other uses and in most cases prevent things like energy extraction, mining, timber harvesting and various other forms of economic development. Additionally, the proposed designations would negatively impact ranchers, businesses and residents throughout Arizona by posing increased threats to livestock and forcing our citizens to miss out on substantial tax revenues.

 

“The Mexican gray wolf population has increased by 10% in recent years, including increases in population in each of the last three years. Furthermore, nearly 90% of the wolf’s original habitat was within the borders of Mexico. It defies commonsense that we are tying up precious resources in America to protect a wolf that is not native to the country and there is not a realistic plan for recovery of an animal that was first listed in 1976. I support the Game and Fish Department’s efforts as we must ensure these listing decisions are warranted and made using the best available science. We must have a plan for recovery for those species that are listed as required under law.”

 

Additional

 

The press release from the Arizona Game and Fish Department can be found HERE.

The Department’s Notice of Intent to sue the USFWS for Failure to Develop a Recovery Plan for the Mexican Wolf can be found HERE.

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