Posted: Wednesday, December 23, 2015By Mike Koshmrl
Representatives for Gov. Matt Mead have not responded to
phone calls about Wyoming’s plan for regaining control over its wolf
population, which is now managed by the federal government.
Wyoming officials have said they were waiting to see the outcome of legislation that would have taken gray wolves in the western Great Lakes region and Wyoming off the endangered list. But that proposal, backed by U.S. Rep. Cynthia Lummis and Sen. John Barrasso, failed to make it into massive year-end congressional tax and spending package signed by President Obama Friday.
Wyoming has appealed a U.S. District Court judge’s 2014 decision that took control of wolves away from the Wyoming Game and Fish Department.
Renny MacKay, a Game and Fish spokesman, deferred to Mead’s office on questions about the next steps for Wyoming.
“What I can say is that the Wyoming Game and Fish Department was standing ready on Monday to take over management of wolves and we’ll be ready next Monday as well,” MacKay said. “We’re ready to do that on a moment’s notice.”
“The judge’s decision in Washington, D.C., did not find fault with our management of wolves,” he said. “It was about whether or not a portion of the plan was [legally] binding or non-binding.”