Rep. Marshall Calls for Modernization of Endangered Species Act

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On Tuesday, U.S. Congressman Roger Marshall, M.D., joined fellow members
of the Western Caucus to announce plans to modernize the Endangered
Species Act (ESA). The ESA is more than 45 years old and was last
reauthorized in 1988. Needless to say, many of the provisions are severely
outdated and the package released today would take steps to bring the
legislation into the twenty-first century.

“As an avid hunter and fisherman, I am dedicated to the preservation of
wildlife for future generations,” Dr. Marshall said. “But a meager 3 percent
recovery rate since its inception, makes it obvious the Endangered Species Act,
as it stands now, must be updated. The Lesser Prairie Chicken’s contentious
status is a prime example of the inefficiency of our current system. We need a
plan that brings stakeholders, property owners, and local and state
governments to the table when making habitat decisions to ensure species are
delisted when desired population levels are met.”

The Western Caucus’s Endangered Species Act Modernization Package brings
together 19 different pieces of legislation. Tuesday’s discussion included
officials from the Department of the Interior who testified to the need to
modernize the ESA.

“For too long the Endangered Species Act has failed wildlife, harmed property
owners, and forced industries to comply with burdensome and complicated
regulations,” Rep. Marshall said. “We need to update this legislation to ensure
all species are protected without causing unnecessary harm to the livelihoods
of Kansans.”