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USDA Overview of Manadatory Penalties

At 4:00 p.m. EDT, Dr. Chester Gipson and Dr. Rachel Cezar conducted a stakeholders’ conference call to outline the finalization of mandatory penalties which will be published in the Federal Register on Thursday, June 7, 2012, and become effective on Monday, July 9, 2012.

During the brief period for questions which followed the announcements, Dr. Cezar read the following protocol of mandatory penalties:

Bilateral sore: must be dismissed from remainder of show.
First offense: 1 year. Second offense: 2 years. Third offense: 3 years

Unilateral sore: must be dismissed from remainder of show.
First offense: 60 days. Second offense: 120 days. Third offense: 1 year

Scar rule: must be dismissed from remainder of show.
First offense: 2 weeks. Second offense: 60 days. Third offense: 1 year

Foreign substance violation: must be dismissed from remainder of show, 2 weeks suspension

Equipment violation: must be dismissed from remainder of show, 2 weeks suspension

Suspension violation: 6 months

All HIOs must have an appeal process in place that occurs within 60 days, reporting the results of said process to USDA within 30 days after ruling.

In response to a question from Marshall Kemp, Dr. Cezar said that the penalty follows the manager, trainer, owner, rider, custodian or transporter as applicable, not the horse and not show management.

The penalty protocol will be posted on the USDA APHIS website this evening and can be read at as soon as it is available.

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