Wyoming Sen. John Barrasso said the recent passage of the America’s Conservation Enhancement Act by both chambers of Congress will reauthorize or establish several important government wildlife conservation programs and have a big impact in Wyoming.
The House of Representatives passed the ACE Act recently, sending it to President Trump’s desk to be signed into law.
Barrasso is the chairman of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works.
“Congress has passed the most significant wildlife conservation and sportsmen’s legislation in decades,” Barrasso said. “For us in Wyoming, it will protect critical habitat, fight chronic wasting disease, conserve species, and compensate ranchers for predator attacks. The ACE Act will help states and tribes manage species better. These measures will help preserve America’s incredible wildlife for hikers, landowners, farmers, hunters, anglers and other outdoor enthusiasts.
“The legislation has the support of conservationists, sportsmen, and farmers alike. It’s a great example of working across party lines to get something done. I am thankful to [Sen. Tom] Carper (R-Del.) for his partnership and I look forward to President Trump signing the ACE Act into law.”
The ACE Act helps conserve wildlife and wildlife habitat, including the reauthorization of the North American Wetlands Conservation Act and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Establishment Act. It also addresses the threats of emerging wildlife diseases like chronic wasting disease, protects livestock from predators, and combats invasive species. The legislation has received support from a broad group of stakeholders.
The ACE Act will:
• Reauthorize the North American Wetlands Conservation Act until 2025;
• Reauthorize the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Act until 2025;
• Reauthorize the Chesapeake Bay Program until 2025;
• Reauthorize the Chesapeake Bay Gateways and Watertrails network and the Chesapeake Bay Gateways Grants Assistance Program until 2025;
• Commission a study by the National Academy of Sciences regarding the pathways and mechanisms of the transmission of chronic wasting disease in the United States;
• Establish a CWD task force to develop an interstate action plan for state and federal cooperation relating to the disease;
• Establish a program to provide grants to states and Indian tribes to compensate livestock producers for losses due to predation by federally protected species such as wolves or grizzly bears;
• Establish a Theodore Roosevelt Genius Prize for technological innovation to reduce human-predator conflict using non-lethal means;
• Authorize funds to combat the threat of invasive species;
• Authorize the director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to issue depredation permits to livestock producers to allow for the taking of black vultures or common ravens under specified circumstances during calving or lambing season; and
• Encourage partnerships among public agencies and other interested parties for promoting fish conservation.