Lacey Act-bad policy that affects us-we can do something

salty joe

New member

Steveb

Premium Member
What can you do? (Below from PIJAC / Pet Advisory Network)
You can call your Members of Congress at their district offices in the next 24-48 hours and let them know if you oppose the amendments to the Lacey Act in the House version of H.R.4521.

Members of Congress representing your district have been assigned to the conference committee that will reconcile differences between the House and Senate versions of H.R.4521 the COMPETES Act in the coming weeks. There is a section in the House version of the bill that, if passed, could devastate responsible businesses across the country like independent freshwater and saltwater aquarium stores, for example.

1) Go to our website: Lacey Act campaign - Pet Advocacy Network
2) Select the phone icon and enter your address to pull up the phone script and the phone numbers for your elected officials
3) Make the call using the script and share any feedback you receive with info@petadvocacy.org so that we may assist with any potential follow up with offices.
 

Steveb

Premium Member
Someone asked why it matters. I think USARK has done a very good job of summarizing.

Why Does This Matter?

Concern is high.
In summary, the amendments being proposed for the Lacey Act fundamentally change everything about how most animals in the pet trade are managed by the Federal Government, specifically by the US Fish and Wildlife Service.

The amendments, if enacted, include nationwide bans on species deemed injurious in any part of the country, i.e. Pterois spp. Lionfishes are already banned in Florida, such bans could now become nationwide, even in extreme locations like Minnesota or Montana where the species could never survive.

The regulation of the importation of animals into the United States will shift from a blacklist that prohibits species from entering the country to a whitelist of allowable species. The whitelist would purportedly initially include species in the trade already, although it is entirely unclear what the “minimal quantities” specification is, and how such a list would function when it comes to species that aren’t even scientifically described. The vagaries of the wording leave many to speculate that only extremely common species might wind up on the initial whitelist.

Any species not on the whitelist will be deemed injurious by default and must be proven otherwise in order to be added to the whitelist, which historically requires an extremely laborious review process of each and every species.

Even more concerning is that species would be prohibited from crossing state lines unless they are on the whitelist.


While the spirit of these amendments is reportedly to prevent the next pandemic or next invasive species, there are already effective legal tools in place to properly manage these concerns at both the State and Federal levels. As a result, the main outcome of these measures would be the crippling of most of the pet industry and hobby, leaving only remnants of the vibrant pastime we currently know and enjoy. The aquarium industry alone is currently thought to represent a 15- to 20-billion dollar industry, yet it would be effectively ended should these Lacey Act amendments be included in the Bipartisan Innovation Act, ultimately becoming law. Shuttering an entire industry goes squarely against the grain of an Act meant to support and encourage American business.

 
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