A Tennessee Republican introduced a bill in the House of Representatives in the latest bid to amend the Horse Protection Act.
Rep. Scott DesJarlais, who represents Tennessee’s 4th congressional district, introduced H.R. 1338 on March 2 “to amend the Horse Protection Act to provide increased protection for horses participating in shows, exhibitions, or sales, and for other purposes.” The bill was assigned to the Energy and Commerce Committee.
Text for the bill is not available at this time.
Nine co-sponsors — Rep. Garland “Andy” Barr, Rep. Diane Black, Rep. Marsha Blackburn, Rep. James Comer, Rep. John “Jimmy” Duncan, Rep. Charles “Chuck” Fleischmann, Rep. Brett Guthrie, Rep. David “Phil” Roe and Rep. Harold “Hal” Rogers — have signed on to the bill. Blackburn and Guthrie are members of the Energy and Commerce Committee that will determine whether the bill will move to the full House.
DesJarlais introducted a bill Nov. 19, 2015, that aimed to amend the HPA. That bill died in committee.
“This bill amends the Horse Protection Act to replace the Designated Qualified Persons program responsible for inspecting horses for soring with a new inspection system,” according to the legislation’s summary. “The Department of Agriculture must establish a single Horse Industry Organization (HIO) in order to establish a formal affiliation with the management of each horse sale, horse exhibition, and horse sale or auction, appoint inspectors to conduct inspections, and otherwise ensure compliance with the Horse Protection Act. The Commissioners of Agriculture for Tennessee and Kentucky must appoint individuals to the HIO. Those individuals must appoint individuals representing the Tennessee Walking Horse industry.”
Blackburn introduced a bill in February 2014 countering H.R. 1518, known as the Prevent All Soring Practices (PAST) Act. Seven members of congress who are sponsoring the current bill also co-sponsored Blackburn’s H.R. 4098 — Fleischmann, Duncan, DesJarlais, Rogers, Black, Barr and Roe. Blackburn’s bill was supported by the Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration.