This is the same structure that four of the 12 HIOs have refused to add to their rulebooks as of January 1, 2011. Dr. Gipson assured us today that those HIOs will be decertified and they are working on the paperwork for that.
I also must point out that I got the following quote from the Walking Horse Chat. This is information they received from the USDA.
The USDA also references a future document under development that will 'propose' additional changes to the regulations consistent with the OIG audit report. The USDA states they expect these changes and the ones in the forthcoming document to enable the Horse Protection program to "successfully eliminate soring." However, they warn that if they do not, they will "seriously consider taking substantially more restrictive action, including, but not limited to, prohibiting the use of all action devices and pads."
I am going to write a blog post about my thoughts on the stakeholder meeting. But I think that overall it went extremely well. There were some excellent questions that were raised, from both the side of the industry and the sound horse side. The USDA had legal and appropriate answers for all of the questions. I was very impressed with most of the questions and answers--most were logical and to the point.
In the meantime, here's the link to the audio of the meeting from the Walking Horse Chat.
Click here to make comments on the new penalty structure. Click on Comment Due under Horse Protection Act: Requiring Horse Industry Organizations, etc. COMMENTS ARE DUE BY JULY 26, 2011! Please be sure to read the penalty structure information BEFORE making comments! We need logical and informed comments--off the cuff remarks will not get our point across.
Overall, I think everyone will be satisfied with how it went, no matter where you stand. My next blog post will be up this weekend!
*We still more sound horse comments on the regulations petition! Click here to submit your comments. COMMENTS ARE DUE BY JUNE 13, 2011 - DO NOT WAIT UNTIL THE LAST MINUTE!