Monday, June 02, 2014

Roosevelt County Commission will sue feds over chicken listing

The Roosevelt County Commission is suing the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and joining a bi-state coalition in combating the listing of the lesser prairie chicken on a federal register of endangered animals. The listing of the lesser prairie chicken as a threatened species, a bird native to New Mexico and four other states and known for its rare mating rituals, was made in March by the USFWS and affects many eastern New Mexico counties. Roosevelt County Manager Charlene Webb said other counties are considering suing the USFWS as the deadline to contest the listing is June 10. The listing has been a hot button issue for commissioners and their constituents because they fear an onslaught of regulations to protect the bird will shutter and slow down local operations in the agriculture and energy industries. Roosevelt County has been considering litigation since May 6 and officials have been meeting with attorneys to help file the suit. The Roosevelt County Commission will meet in special session June 6 to give notice of intent to file a suit, according to Webb...more

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