Today, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) announced it is extending the effective date of the final rule to list the lesser prairie-chicken under the Endangered Species Act until March 27, 2023. This decision comes after U.S. Senator Mullin and his colleagues urged the USFWS to delay the rule in a letter this month.
U.S Senators Markwayne Mullin (OK), Roger Marshall, M.D. (KS), Jerry Moran (KS), and James Lankford (OK), along with U.S. Representatives Tracey Mann (KS-01), Jake LaTurner (KS-02), Ron Estes (KS-04), August Pfluger (TX-11), Stephanie Bice (OK-05), Dan Newhouse (WA-04), Ronny Jackson (TX-13), Frank D. Lucas (OK-03), and Tom Cole (OK-04), issued the following joint statement regarding today’s announcement by the USFWS:
“While a delay gives industry stakeholders valuable time to prepare for more bureaucratic red tape, our preference continues to be that this listing of the lesser prairie-chicken be dropped. Each party that is targeted by this listing must take advantage of this opportunity to continue to engage in their longstanding voluntary conservation efforts, a fact that went completely ignored by the federal government when it came to this decision. We commend Secretary Haaland for the additional time, but we will continue to do what we can at the federal level to stop the rule from going into effect.”
Earlier this month, Senator Mullin joined this same group of elected officials in a letter to Deb Haaland, Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior, requesting an extension to delay the final rule that will list the lesser prairie-chicken (LPC) under the Endangered Species Act. The Members suggested April 1 be the new deadline, which is before the primary nesting season of the bird.
On December 21, 2022, Senators Mullin, Marshall, Moran, Inhofe, and Lankford, along with U.S. Representatives Mann, LaTurner, Estes, Lucas, and Bice introduced a Congressional Review Act (CRA) joint resolution of disapproval to strike down the Biden Administration’s listing of the lesser prairie-chicken under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). This resolution would prevent the listing from having any effect.