Enzi on Endangered Species Act: states should be in the loop

Sage Grouse (Mike Enzi Facebook)

WYOMING – Several pieces of legislation were introduced today that sponsors say will improve the Endangered Species Act. Included in the handful of bills introduced March 27 is one from U.S. Senator Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., co-sponsored by Senator John Barrasso, R-Wyo., that would require the federal government to disclose the data it uses for Endangered Species Act (ESA) listings. It would also elicit more involvement from those individual states most affected by the outcome.

“Wyoming has some of the richest wildlife habitat in the world,” Enzi stated in a press release today. “The Endangered Species Act has a profound impact on our economy and our lives. The federal government should be sharing its endangered species data and allowing those most affected by a proposal to review the information. State, local and tribal entities need to have a seat at the table when federal agencies are proposing regulations that could have significant ramifications. We should encourage an open process that relies on the best data available. This legislation would give the opportunity to verify, dispute, or complement the information federal agencies use in listings species.”

The State, Tribal, and Local Species Transparency and Recovery Act is designed to ensure the federal government adheres to its legal responsibilities to cooperate with states under the Endangered Species Act, and that the best available scientific data is used in listing decisions.

Enzi also cosponsored other pieces of legislation led by U. S. Senator John Cornyn, R-Texas, to improve the Endangered Species Act process. One bill would require the federal government to publish data used in listing and delisting federally endangered and threatened species on the internet.

Another bill would protect citizens from the regulatory impact of closed-door litigation settlements between special interest groups and the Fish and Wildlife Service.