Today the Idaho Senate Resources and Environment Committee unanimously passed H470, the bill creating the Wolf Control Board, but the bill will be amended to include minor changes, including one that would put the board under the governor’s office, before going to the full Senate.

The Joint Finance-Appropriations Committee will determine the level of funding the board will receive from the general fund. Earlier the proponents asked for a single $2 million appropriation but, because of a funding shortfall for other programs, the board will most likely receive $400,000 in 5 annual payments instead.

The bill is very likely to pass and be signed into law by the governor.

 
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About The Author

Ken Cole

Ken Cole, Western Watershed Project’s Idaho Director, is a 5th generation Idahoan, an avid fly fisherman, wildlife enthusiast, and photographer. He is also serves as a member of the board of directors for Buffalo Field Campaign.

60 Responses to Idaho Senate Resources and Environment Committee Passes Wolf Control Board Bill to Senate Floor

  1. avatar rick says:

    Originally the proponents asked for a single $2 million appropriation

    I believe the proponents originally asked for $400,000. The bump to $2 million came later because it was thought that that amount was available.

  2. avatar Grace says:

    This is sickening news. I wish there was a way to prevent this bill from moving forward.

  3. avatar Megan Jones says:

    Seriously, what is wrong with Idaho??? Do they HATE wildlife? This “Bill” is simply an excuse to line thier pockets while driving the senseless massacre of an essential species that is PROVEN to be beneficial to the ecosystem. I am an avid Flyfisher and will not return to Idaho because of their narrow, uneducated and senseless disregard for this scapegoated species and probably ALL Wildlife, except things they can shoot like Elk and other Prey animals. Oh, and by the way, Wolves are proven to boost ell and deer populations by taking down the sick before they infect others, so way to “shoot yourself in the foot” on hunting your beloved prey animals with this bill!!! Idaho=Backwards!

  4. avatar Conor McIntyre says:

    This shows that lawmakers clearly do not understand what the citizen of their state want. The overwhelming majority of people in Idaho oppose the wolf hunt. It is only the fringe hate groups with money that support it for their own agenda. Tsk. . . tsk. . . tsk. . . I will never step foot in Idaho.

  5. avatar Eric T. says:

    Did Siddoway further engage Zachary after the hearing on his “you broke the law Senator”?

  6. avatar Shirley says:

    I know that there is little I can do to stop this now. But I use my purse to talk for me. I will not travel through Idaho or knowingly purchase anything from Idaho or made in Idaho. They will not get any of my money to pay for this.

    • avatar WM says:

      Shirley,

      Still trying to wrap my brain around this bill, and cannot see any real reason for it, other than political motivation.

      However, If I understand correctly, some substantial portion of the fund is a direct assessment from the livestock industry on the sale of cattle, goats, and sheep, including wool sales. It is not clear to me what the origin is of the pass-thru money from the Fish and Game Department (Is some of it from license/tag sales?????) And, the law has a sunset provision which means it goes away in 2019.

      So, it is hard to say how much, if any, and for how long, any would be money from your purse would make its way to a wolf control directive.

      Besides, it has been pretty well shown boycotts like, “I’m not going to this state [fill in the blank], or purchase any of its products [as if most could be identified directly, especially agricultural products].

      • avatar WM says:

        Sorry,

        ++Besides, it has been pretty well shown boycotts like, “I’m not going to this state [fill in the blank], or purchase any of its products [as if most could be identified directly, especially agricultural products] ACTUALLY WORK.

  7. avatar Ida Lupines says:

    I can never see these hearings! 🙁

  8. avatar Yvette says:

    I don’t think boycotts will work. Boycotts take a massive loss for them to have an impact.

    How can this be moved back toward the center? The anti-wolf side has, and seems to have always had the upper hand. They have no reason to negotiate or compromise since they seem to be in control of the game. The pro-wolf, pro-conservation side seems to be continually responding to attacks and maneuvers by the opponents. I could be wrong. I’m not up there, and am not in the middle of it.

    Is there any chance that either side can turn Idaho back toward middle ground with conservation and wolf issues? Those of you up in the region, is there any chance that Idahoans will be annoyed enough at the creation of the wolf board, and the money used to fund it to get different people in office?

    • avatar Eric T. says:

      No. There is a very large rift within the Idaho Republican party and an attempt to move even further to the right.

      In North idaho there are well known Republicans who registered as Democrats to run for upcoming precinct committee posts election with the intent to disrupt the Democrats and their platform. Mostly symbolic, as a way to stick it to dems as dems are registering as a Republican in order to vote in the Republican primary which the winner takes the election in November.

      • avatar JB says:

        The only thing worse than a two-party system is a one-party system. When the candidates are all clones on one another, do people really have a choice? I’ve liberal friends in Utah that have registered as Republicans their whole lives because it is the only way to make your vote mean anything.

  9. avatar Gary Humbard says:

    Were there any scientists there to testify that wolves can not only co-exist with ranchers but that there existence creates a trophic cascade effect?

    It seems that Idaho is intent on playing a numbers game in that as long as they keep the minimum number of wolves from being delisted, then to heck with all of the benefits that wolves and other apex predators provide.

    Will pressure on the Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management (who manages the vast majority of land in Idaho and are required to use best available science) change the culture? Does IDFG manage wildlife on USFS and BLM managed land?

    • avatar Ken Cole says:

      No, but nothing will sway them from their disdain for wolves. The BLM and U.S. Forest Service don’t really care how Idaho Department of Fish and Game manages wildlife on federal lands as long as they are not protected by the Endangered Species Act.

      I’m not sure why anyone is under the illusion that the state of Idaho could ever be swayed by public opinion. This state is run by ideologues who have no use for science, facts, or morality. They only do what serves industry, particularly the livestock or agricultural industries. The noble landed gentry care nothing of the rights of people or wildlife and they have nothing but contempt for your or my interests.

      • avatar Eric T. says:

        Spot on comment. The attitudes are not going to change given the political climate.

      • avatar Gary Humbard says:

        Ken I sense a lot of frustration and apathy in your last response, however with time, solutions to Idahos current predator management will transpire. I worked for the BLM and there were times that decisions were made based on public opinion. Timber sale protestors got their attention and stopped some timber sales from procedding.

        I’m aware that conservation groups write opinion letters in local papers, file lawsuits, provide information on the internet and voice information during legislative hearings, but is there a coalition of conservation groups that have developed other strategies on trying to change the idealogue and culture in Idaho?

        • avatar Ken Cole says:

          I have lived in Idaho my entire life, unless the political system changes, and there is no sign of it doing so anytime soon, we are stuck with the Idaho version of the Taliban running this state. Looking at the entire political landscape here is frustrating. With the exception of a very few, the democratic part is a wasteland as well. Stennett said hardly a word in the hearing yesterday and voted along with the rest of them. No opposition in the committee whatsoever. I wonder if she is planning on running for another office or if she is just capitulating because that is what ranchers demand. There is no opposition within the power structure at all and it won’t change because everyone wants to sound “reasonable”.

      • avatar MJ says:

        Can someone explain to someone who is not in or from Idaho how a large number of voters can’t make a change at election time? There seems to be public opinion that is pro-wildlife, what is keeping them from the vote?

        Even in areas that are traditionally one party or the other, that party can lose or at least the pendulum can swing if the voters are angry enough. This issue makes people angry,..

        • avatar Ken Cole says:

          It is because people don’t vote based on these issues. While many people may have feelings against how wildlife is managed it isn’t something that would bring them change their vote. This is a common occurrence among voters.

          • avatar MJ says:

            Thanks, that’s too bad for all of Idaho.

          • avatar Mike says:

            It’s a common occurrence everywhere it seems except the West Coast and Colorado.

          • avatar Louise Kane says:

            Its weird though Ken, whether they vote on wildlife or not, they do seem to vote on school budgets, education and other social issues and to see so much money being spent to destroy wolves much make some people angry? I see that the 2M budget was not going to be approved but why would anyone vote for any amount of money that would be taken away from education or other social programs that might benefit the general populace. I mean how many people are normally affected by marauding wolves? Jeez

            • avatar Louise Kane says:

              oh they did get the 2 M unreal

            • avatar Ken Cole says:

              Idaoans vote almost entirely on jobs and taxes. They vote for less taxes and more minimum wage jobs.

              The population of Idaho, especially the Boise, Nampa, Caldwell area, has risen dramatically since the 1990’s and it was due largely to high tech jobs like HP and Micron but there was also a big “white flight” where white people moved here to escape minorities and gangs. When they brought their kids they started new gangs and the crime rate rose. They also brought their right wing politics and shitty architecture.

        • avatar Eric T. says:

          440k voters are registered as unaffiliated.
          240k voters are registered as Republican.
          55K voters are registered as Democrats.

          When looking at the voter numbers post election it is clear that unaffiliated voters vote with the Republican candidate and issues.

          One break from that were the student come first education reforms that were passed in the legislature. A voter initiative, actually 3, garnered enough signatures to make the general election ballot. All initiatives passed overturning the student come first reforms. The legislature came back and started passing the overturned reforms one at a time instead of bundling them.

          The moral of the story is even if the citizens vote to pass an initiative or referendum, if it cuts against the legislative grain, the legislature will fix the misguided public’s policy desires.

  10. I was out of state and missed the meeting. When you say ‘unanamously”, do you mean that Stennett and other Democrats also supported this bill?

  11. avatar ramses09 says:

    I have a friend who lived in ID. She moved form there because of the corruption of that state, also what they do to the wildlife there. I agree, a majority of folks who live in ID. DO NOT want WOLVES HUNTED. But it’s the money & hate that does the talking there.
    ID. is one of the most corrupt states n our union.

  12. avatar Karen Scarpelli says:

    I agree with so many who have expressed their concerns, about the carnage that Idaho is unleashing on wildlife. I believe that we, who are of sound mind should boycott any and all travel to Idaho. Their disrespect for the Wild over shadows anything that this State has to offer. Next, they will announce a leveling of the wilderness, just to spite a tree, or ??? Please, is there a reasonable person out there? Karen Scarpelli

  13. avatar Zoe Berger says:

    I commented on the previous site so I’ve copied and pasted:

    Ken I listened (thanks for the link) and it is pretty horrifying how stacked it all is. I commend you for trying to speak, your clarity and gentleness, all of which was missed by all of them. I did not get the name of the one other person who was much more blatant and honest, and who was met with such incredible rudeness I could not believe this was a serious meeting – which I guess it was not. They simply dismissed anything either of you had to say. I am actually relieved there was no video for me to see the faces of these intransigent people. Thank you both. Thank you.

  14. avatar Maryann Boston says:

    To whom this May concern,
    Stop killing these wolves.

    H
    I’m fighting for these wolves.
    I will go higher then your city counsel.
    I will be contacting Sally Jewell
    From the Dept of the Interior in Washington DC.
    I’m very serious and I have connections to make this happen. This killing will stop !
    So be ready to take me on and people who care very for wolves. I will be contacting Secretary Sally Jewell.
    Thank you for your time
    Maryann Boston

    • avatar Louise Kane says:

      Hah sorry MaryAnn please contact soon and while you do so please ask her to reconsider the national delisting. Perhaps you can catch her at the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation with Tester.

    • avatar Zoe Berger says:

      Good luck with that. I wrote to Sally Jewell in January and copied a ton of people on it who I thought were relevant. I only received ONE response that basically said Idaho is in control. It’s very difficult to accept, with so many people against these massacres, that they cannot be stopped. The massacres or the ones responsible for them that is.

    • avatar wolf moderate says:

      Where are you from? Interesting that you wield so much influence.

      Best of luck to you. Idaho really respects elitists!

  15. avatar Carla Franklin says:

    This is disgusting. The money should be spent on teaching ranchers to take care of their stock etc. Not murder wolves. Wolves are in the natural environment. This only makes the ranchers happier and richer. Leave the wolves alone.

    • avatar Nancy says:

      “The money should be spent on teaching ranchers to take care of their stock etc”

      Carla,

      THAT comment has been expressed often on the Wildlife News site, so if you really care, research the facts, form an opinion and then run like hell with that information – tell 10 people and ask them to tell 10 people…. seriously 🙂

      What’s left of wildlife (and
      THEIR habitat, most which now falls under some sort of human management) will appreciate your efforts 🙂

  16. avatar Ida Lupines says:

    I hope we’re not going to revert back to pre-reintroduction where the last remaining wolves in the lower 48 were in Minnesota! It sure looks that way.

    • avatar rork says:

      I believe we are reaching the day when you predicted full extirpation of wolves in the lower 48, about 2 years ago. Crying wolf daily ever since.

  17. avatar WyoWolfFan says:

    I have long avoided travel to Idaho. They don’t need any of my money.

  18. avatar Ida Lupines says:

    Well, here’s at least one great name associated with environmentalism who hasn’t sold out:

    Udall: Gray Wolf Delisting Not Sound Science

  19. avatar LENORE BRADFORD says:

    Clearly you don’t understand how POWERFUL social media is. I hope you find out very soon that your decision to continue the slaughter of wolves will not go well for Idaho.

  20. avatar jon says:

    Idaho is not going to change unless those radical right wingers are voted out. Ken is right.

  21. avatar JEFF E says:

    it has probably been said already and should have been apparent to anyone paying attention for years that Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming are owned and ran by the livestock industry.
    There was no way in hell this bill was NOT going to pass once Clem received his marching orders and a bucket of water to carry.
    Done deal from day one.
    By the way changing the political land scape will not matter one whit because it is still the livestock industry that holds the purse strings.

    They could also give a shit about hunting or fishing except what they might feel entitled to for themselves, but if it went away not a tear would be shed because there would then be no reason at all to not have cows and sheep as far as the eye could see.

    • avatar Ida Lupines says:

      There was no way in hell this bill was NOT going to pass once Clem received his marching orders and a bucket of water to carry.

      LOL 🙂

    • Ranchers like to hunt. They fill up their trucks at their farm gas barrel before they leave and use the hunt as a tax deductible farm expense.

    • avatar Yvette says:

      As far as conservative politics and politicos, I gave up a few years ago. I’m in one of the reddest states in the union, and the only state where Obama lost every county. I’m no longer an Obama fan having watched his appointments and decisions on conservation and environmental issues.

      Most politicians seem to amount to pond scum, red or blue, seems not to matter much.

      I don’t have faith we can make a change until we shake some of the power from the agriculture industry. I wonder if there will ever be a chance to get them off of public lands grazing, or lease lands at market value, or stop reimbursing them for lifestock lost while grazing on public lands. Something to start chipping away at their power structure.

      I’m sure multiple NGOs have tried all of that time and again, to no avail.

      I dunno, maybe climate change will take care of it where we’ve failed. The wildlife will rebound quicker than humans.

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Quote

‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

~ Edward Abbey

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