Skip to content

American Farm Bureau Supports Blackburn Legislation



American Farm Bureau Federation President Bob Stallman recently sent a letter to Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn supporting the goals of H.R. 4098, the Horse Protection Amendments Act of 2014.  American Farm Bureau applauded the application of objective, science-based inspections to eliminate intentional horse soring.  American Farm Bureau also applauded the single, independent HIO which is to be governed by expert individuals.

Click here to view the letter to Congresswoman Blackburn.  

March 7, 2014

The Honorable Marsha Blackburn
U.S. House of Representatives
217 Cannon House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Rep. Blackburn:

The American Farm Bureau Federation supports the goals of H.R. 4098, the Horse Protection Amendments Act, legislation you and your colleagues have introduced to enact science-based reforms to eliminate intentional horse soring. While soring occurs in less than 1 percent of horses inspected, it is an unacceptable practice that right-minded horse owners do not condone and one that mars the image of all horse men and women.

Horse soring was banned by the federal Horse Protection Act (HPA) decades ago. However, enforcement of the HPA relative to soring has been challenged by inconsistent inspection standards and the lack of reliable, objective science-based techniques and tools that ensure uniformity among inspectors in attendance at various Tennessee Walking Horse events.

H.R. 4098 would include a clear definition of “objective inspection” centered on science-based methods that have been tested to ensure reliable, reproducible results. In addition, the bill would create a single “Horse Industry Organization” (HIO) governed by expert individuals appointed by the secretary of agriculture. This HIO would establish a formal affiliation with each horse sale, exhibition, show or auction in coordination with the secretary to conduct HPA inspections.

The HIO would be comprised of state agriculture officials and representatives of the Tennessee Walking Horse industry and the Walking Horse Trainers’ Association and subject to federal conflict of interest rules. In turn, the HIO would be directed to establish strict conflict of interest policies for any individual licensed by the HIO to conduct inspections.

Finally, H.R. 4098 takes important steps to addresses concerns Farm Bureau has regarding other proposed horse soring legislation by:

Focusing on objective, science-based inspection methods that can distinguish between legitimate training techniques and devices versus illegal soring methods;
?
Establishing a panel appointed by USDA comprised of state officials and industry experts to license and oversee inspectors to meet demand; and
?
Reinforcing current activities and oversight roles conducted by USDA.

Thank you for your consideration of our comments.

Sincerely,
Bob Stallman
President

More Stories

  • Latest Issue WHYIR 20

    Read More
  • Latest Issue 3 1 31

    Read More
  • Walking In The Smokies stall deadline approaching

    The Walking In The Smokies Horse Show, scheduled for April 8-10, 2021, in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee is preparing for their first annual show and would like to send a reminder to anyone needing stalls that the deadline is March 15. Please contact Lexi Stinnett at 828-550-8520 to reserve stalls on the show grounds. Read More
  • Trainers' Show announces judges

    The Walking Horse Trainers’ Association National Trainers’ Show will be held at Calsonic Arena in Shelbyville, Tenn. March 18-20, 2021. Judges for the three-day event will be Wayne Dean, Newton Parks and Johnny Puckett. Read More
  • USDA prepares for 2021 show season

    The USDA recently conducted their virtual HIO training course for the 2021 show season. The USDA and industry recently received the final report from the National Academies of Sciences (NAS) and some of the recommendations in that report are communicated in the new processes the USDA will implement in 2021... Read More
  • WHOA hosts virtual awards ceremony

    On Saturday. February 20th, the Walking Horse Owners’ Association (WHOA) held their National High Point awards for 2020 on their WHOA Facebook page with winners who chose to be zooming in to accept their awards... Read More
  • WHOA to host virtual awards ceremony on February 20

    The Walking Horse Owners’ Association (WHOA) will recognize their award winners from the 2020 show season during a virtual awards ceremony on Saturday, February 20, 2021. The show will be broadcast live on WHOA’s Facebook page beginning at 6 pm central time. Read More
  • FAST Spring Showcase announces judging panel

    The FAST Spring Showcase is pleased to announce that John Fikes, Newton Parks and Sam Sorrell will judge this years’ two-day event. The show will be held at Calsonic Arena in Shelbyville, Tenn. April 16-17, 2021... Read More
  • Obituary – Kimberly Woods

    Kimberly Lynn Woods, age 47 departed this life on Sunday, February 14, 2021 at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington, Kentucky... Read More
  • WHAA annual barn party rescheduled due to inclement weather

    There will be a lot of great items to auction as well as breeding fees to some of the top stallions in the industry and training fees for many of the top trainers. Everyone is encouraged to bring your young horses to preview for the upcoming show season. Read More