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Governor’s eager to present sage-grouse case

Submitted by Newsroom on July 14, 2011 – 7:08 amNo Comment

By News Director Leslie Stratmoen

CHEYENNE, Wyo. – The office of Wyoming’s Gov. Matt Mead reports that the state has received notice that a judge in Idaho has granted Wyoming’s motion to intervene in sage-grouse litigation. Judge Lynn Winmill is hearing a challenge to the US Fish and Wildlife Service’s decision that listing sage-grouse under the Endangered Species Act is warranted but precluded by other higher listing priorities.

Gov. Matt Mead

Western Watersheds Projects is seeking a court order requiring the Fish and Wildlife Service to list sage-grouse. Wyoming asked to intervene to defend the Service’s determination that listing sage-grouse is precluded by other higher listing priorities. Governor Mead says he’s worked hard to maintain a state-based solution for protecting sage-grouse habitat. The Sage-Grouse Core Area Protection Strategy is set forth in the Governor’s Executive Order. Governor Mead notes listing the sage-grouse would have very serious implications for Wyoming’s economy.

The governor says “no state has come close to what Wyoming has done regarding the protection of the bird species. And, he adds, it’s appropriate that the judge let the state into the lawsuit because Wyoming has more experience and more at stake than any other state.

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