Articles and Media CoverageState Senator George Latimer Proposes Legislation to Safeguard Geese
Articles and Media Coverage From Animal Defenders of Westchester (ADOW)

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State Senator George Latimer Proposes Legislation to Safeguard Geese

February 23, 2014

NYS State Senator George Latimer has introduced legislation to protect the geese. According to Latimer, the proposed legislation will ensure community involvement before a decision is made to kill geese. The legislation will require a local public hearing and discussion of non-lethal methods to remove geese before opting to kill them. The legislation would also prohibit the use of geese meat for human consumption. Commenting on the legislation Latimer said, "Scarsdale is certainly not alone in dealing with this problem; the hope is we will be thoughtful and humane in our actions."

Kiley Blackman, founder of the Animal Defenders of Westchester is pleased with the proposal and said:

This profoundly important bill is being submitted at a time when the general public is becoming aware of the severe abuses by USDA/Wildlife Services and their licensing agent, the DEC, using taxpayer monies to kill and butcher our wildlife with any overreach and plundering they can perpetrate. Their newest outrage was a plan to totally wipe out the mute swan population entirely. We began meeting with Senator Latimer when several venues in Westchester announced plans to kill geese here last spring; we are proud that he has shown consideration and decency to those who have no voice - yet have a right to exist on this earth without the constant threats by the USDA to kill them all, which we will not just sit back and allow to happen. This bill also prevents the USDA from putting a PR band-aide on their war on wildlife by donating the bodies to food banks, a gesture denounced by the Coalition for the Homeless - and causing concerns that the homeless would 'chip their teeth' on buckshot.

The bill includes the following provisions:

1. Prior to filing a request with the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation for a permit for lethal disposition of turkeys or geese, the local government shall hold a public hearing thereon in a place determined by that government in the locality affected. At least ten (10) days before the hearing, notice thereof shall be advertised in a newspaper published in the community affected. The notice shall state the subject of the hearing and the proposed disposition of the turkeys or geese.

2. Prior to filing said request for permit to the NYS DEC, the local government shall provide proof that they have fully evaluated all humane alternatives to execution of the turkeys or geese, subsequent to the public hearing, and have reviewed that evaluation at a public meeting of the governing board of that government, no more than sixty (60) days after the public hearing, such meeting held under full compliance with the applicable open meetings laws .

3. The local government shall not donate turkeys or geese to be used for human consumption.

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