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Arkansas Horse Council in the Legislature and in Congress
By Betty Miller Jones

During the last 22 years the AHC has been recognized as a force to be dealt with in the state legislature but like other state horse councils they have relied heavily on the American Horse Council to take care of business on the national level. Since the closure of the only two slaughterhouses in the United States, we, and others (State Horse Councils), have realized that our industry was not being protected at the national level after all. The ArHC and other state horse councils nationwide are working together to form a new umbrella group to make sure that our interests are protected. Sue Wallis, a Wyoming state legislator and state horse council spokeswoman explains "We need a voice that is capable of coherently and articulately communicating to a misinformed and emotionally manipulated American public".

In order for Arkansas to continue to be a major force in state and national politics, we need to increase our membership and have all of the 13 districts in our state unified in support of our mission -- to promote the humane care and management of horses and the continued viability of the equine community in our state. We ask that everyone join the AHC at a level of support that best suits your pocketbook. We are also offering a free email membership to keep you informed of all current legislative matters pertaining to the equine industry and many events statewide.
Since the beginning of the ArHC in 1986, with Bob Holloway as founder, the organization has been able to secure many things that the horsepeople of the state have needed; the Equestrian Center at the State Fairgrounds, the best EIA laws in America, a limited liability law that has held up in court for the last 13 years protecting our interests both personally and professionally, the innovative EIA Verifier's Program with over 2,000 active verifiers and many other valuable programs and projects. Lobbying for support of Felony Animal Cruelty and Freedom to Farm bills has been ongoing for the last two sessions.. In the last legislative session we were able to get a House Concurrent Resolution passed to send a clear message to the Congress of the United States to inform them of our views on horse slaughter and to ask for support in getting a facility built to process horses in our state.

During the many Expos and educational seminars the ArHC has brought top notch trainers and performers to Arkansas for our horse owning public. Well known personalities such as Richard Shrake, Clinton Anderson, Curt Pate, Dan Sumerel, Craig Cameron, Eitan Beth Halachmy and many others were first introduced to Arkansas by the AHC organization. The AHC is an avid supporter of the Black Stallion Literacy Program and is staunchly opposed to the National Animal ID and Premise ID programs proposed by the USDA.

Our Vice President, Michael Steenbergen, of Springdale has made two trips to Washington, D.C., this year to visit with our Congressional delegates and is keeping them informed about needs and our progress. Last week he spent time meeting with Lincoln, Pryor and Boozeman. The equine industry in Arkansas has over 5 BILLION dollars in total assets and is still growing. We are in the top five states in number of horses. You need to be sure that your voice is heard. We work for you 12 months of the year and need your support to keep the Arkansas Equine Industry in the forefront of the minds of our legislators and congressmen. Please join with us in working toward a more secure industry by joining at any level on our website at www.//arhorsecouncil.org. We promise your dollars will be wisely spent and rest assured that no salaries are paid out of any monies collected. We are all still volunteers!



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Last edited on Sunday, 11-Apr-2010 18:16:34 EDT


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