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ACE Act advances to House

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On Sept. 16, the U.S. Senate passed America’s Conservation Enhancement (ACE) Act, sponsored by Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY), to help with research on two significant issues in the state of Wyoming – chronic wasting disease (CWD) and protecting livestock from predators.

The act was introduced in the Senate last December and will now advance to the House of Representatives, where, if adopted, it will move to the office of President Donald Trump to await his signature. 

“The Senate is working together to protect wildlife,” stated Barrasso. “Our bipartisan legislation will establish a special task force to combat the spread of CWD. It will also help protect livestock from predators. The legislation is a win for ranching communities in Wyoming.” 

According to Barrasso, the ACE Act is broad-reaching and will cover a number of shared interests between conservationist groups and private landowners alike. 

In fact, the bill will reauthorize the North American Wetlands Conservation Act and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Establishment Act – both of which finance a number of habitat protection projects. In addition, the bill will create new sources of funding for combating invasive species and will also establish an interstate effort to fight emerging wildlife diseases, such as CWD. 

Although efforts to fight CWD have been in effect since the release of a statewide management plan approved in July, a plan to combat invasive species is currently a top priority for Gov. Mark Gordon and the Legislature’s Joint Committee on Agriculture, State and Public Lands and Water Resources.

The governor’s Invasive Species Initiative, including a series of recommendations on the best strategies to combat invasive species in Wyoming, has begun nearing completion. The final recommendations are scheduled to be released at the end of September. 

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