The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) notified the Kentucky Horse Industry Organization (HIO) on September 13, 2018 of its intention to revoke its certification to operate a Designated Qualified Person (DQP) program. The KY-HIO board of directors corresponded and met with the USDA regarding the reasons for decertification.

On August 6, 2019, after reviewing the information received, the USDA proceeded to revoke the certification of the KY-HIO at which time the USDA informed the KY-HIO that they could appeal the revocation in writing and request a hearing. The KY-HIO did file an appeal utilizing the firm Olsson Frank Weeda Terman Matz PC (OFW Law).

In a letter dated March 27, 2020, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) Administrator Kevin Shea stated, “After careful review, we have decided to grant your appeal and will not pursue revocation of KY-HIO’s DQP program certification at this time.” As a result, the KY-HIO will be in operation and accepting affiliations for the 2020 show season.