Saturday, October 31, 2009

HSLF and League of Humane Voters of New Jersey Praise Corzine

Incumbent Governor Jon Corzine has a clear history of animal advocacy according to the Humane Society Legislative Fund: "During his first term as governor, Corzine signed several animal protection policies into law, including bills to prohibit the inhumane and unsporting shooting of live animals over the Internet, to tax the sale of fur clothing, to require the inclusion of animals in disaster planning, and to impose a moratorium on the harvesting and possession of horseshoe crabs."

"Most notably, he worked with the Department of Environmental Protection to stop the controversial trophy hunting season on New Jersey’s small population of black bears, and instead, Corzine and the DEP implemented a comprehensive plan to reduce bear-human conflicts using non-lethal and humane management."

The Humane Society goes on to relate "In stark contrast, Corzine’s opponent, Chris Christie, has stated that he supports bear hunting. The fate of New Jersey’s bear population could be decided in the November 3 election!"

"Further confirmation of Christie's stand is his endorsement by the New Jersey Outdoor Alliance. NJOA council members include New Jersey State Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs, National Wild Turkey Federation, United Bow Hunters of New Jersey and New Jersey Trappers Association to name a few. "

The 2009 gubernatorial election is the first in which Lieutenant Governor will be on the ballot. The Humane Society says "Corzine’s running mate for Lieutenant Governor, state Senator Loretta Weinberg, has been one of the leading advocates for animal protection in the New Jersey legislature."

RFA testifies at congressional hearing on Magnuson

RFA testifies at congressional hearing on Magnuson
Wed, Oct 28, 2009

On October 27, the House Natural Resources Committee, Subcommittee on Insular Affairs, Oceans and Wildlife held an oversight hearing on implementation of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act of 2006 (MSA). Testifying on behalf the Recreational Fishing Alliance (RFA), Herb Moore, Jr. charged the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) with managing the recreational fishing sector using poor statistical data and by attempting to meet arbitrary rebuilding timelines without adequately fulfilling their own commitments.

"Unfortunately, many in the recreational fishing public have come to view our federal government as the enemy - having experienced decades of larger and larger minimum size limits, shorter seasons and smaller bag limits in fisheries that we know are healthy," Moore said, adding "We believe NMFS needs a complete overhaul in how it views recreational fishing and we believe this Congress can help."

Congress mandated extensive improvements to recreational data collection programs in the 2006 MSA reauthorization. "Unfortunately, NMFS has not met its mandates," Moore said. "The problems with MRFSS have been well-documented for years and it took an act of Congress to get NMFS to move on this, but the process has been slow."

South Carolina charter and party boat Captain Mark Brown said "NMFS continues to move forward like a run-away train," and testified that MSA requirements were leading to the draconian management measures on the red snapper fishery. "These measures are due to the mandates of the rigid and inflexible timeframes set forth within the MSA and are being forced upon the fishermen without sound statistics and without a clear understanding of why fisheries managers are forced to accept scientific information that makes absolutely no sense," Brown said, while vocalizing his support for the Flexibility in Rebuilding American Fisheries Act.

Sponsored in the House by Rep. Frank Pallone (HR 1584) and in the Senate by Sen. Charles Schumer (S 1255), this "flexibility" legislation would extend the time period for rebuilding certain overfished fisheries provided that certain conditions are met. Pallone noted that because the best available science is generally uncertain, it creates total allowable landing figures that unduly restrict the fishermen, which contributes to his concerns about the rebuilding targets. "Other factors should be included in determining rebuilding targets besides fishing, for instance are environmental factors such as the development and degradation of estuaries," Pallone said, adding that the best way to address these issues in his opinion is through HR 1584 and S 1255.

"Magnuson is clearly a broken instrument of the law that needs to be fixed to allow for more access, conservation, and rebuilding," said Capt. Brown in his testimony.
For an archived audio version, visit

Thursday, October 22, 2009

HSLF Endorses Dean Florez for California Lt Governor

No surprise here that the Humane Society Legislative Fund has already announced their endorsement for Senator Dean Florez (D-16) in his bid for Lt. Governor. Sen. Florez was a driving force this year on behalf of HSUS/HSLF for legislation against agriculture producers and dog owners. Florez was the author of SB 250 (now inactive) which would criminalize ownership of intact dogs and cats under certain conditions and mandate new local programs for spay/neuter of any impounded dog or cat before release.

In the press release Wayne Pacelle says, “The role of lieutenant governor will continue to prepare him for even more significant leadership opportunities in the future.”

Read more in the HSLF press release

Joined at the hip with HSUS

The legislative arm of HSUS, Humane Society Legislative Fund (HSLF), sponsored a "There Oughta Be a Law" contest asking for input for a new federal bill to help animals. Longtime animal rights supporters Rep. Jim Moran, D-VA and Rep. John Campbell, R-CA joined HSLF as contest judges.

HSLF quotes Campbell as saying, "It is a pleasure to be a part of an effort that encourages legislation originating at the grassroots level. I am happy to be a judge in the 'There Oughta be a Law' contest." Hunters should recognize Campbell as a lead sponsor of the Bear Protection Act, H.R. 3480 of 2009, introduced in July.

In the same HSLF press release Moran stated, "I'm pleased to have an opportunity to judge the first-ever HSLF 'There Oughta be a Law' contest. I'm certain that we'll see terrific ideas for a federal animal protection bill."

At the close of the contest 3,500 entries had been received, a small amount(.03 percent) of interest from the 11 million members HSUS claims to have.