Oversight Hearing on "The Endangered Species Act: How Litigation is Costing Jobs and Impeding True Recovery Efforts"
Tuesday, December 6, 2011 10:00 AM
Full Committee
1324 Longworth House Office Building


COMMITTEE ON NATURAL RESOURCES
1324 Longworth House Office Building
Tuesday, December 6, 2011
10:00 a.m.

OVERSIGHT HEARING ON:

OPENING STATEMENT:

The Honorable Doc Hastings
Chairman

WITNESSES AND TESTIMONY:

Panel I

Karen Budd-Falen
Attorney
Budd-Falen Law Offices
Cheyenne, Wyoming
Attachment to Testimony
(Truth in Testimony Form)

Doug Miller
General Manager
Public Utility District # 2 of Pacific County
Raymond, Washington
(Truth in Testimony Form)

Kieran Suckling
Executive Director
Center for Biological Diversity
Tucson, Arizona
(Truth in Testimony Form)

Jay Tutchton
General Counsel
WildEarth Guardians
Santa Fe, New Mexico
(Truth in Testimony Form)

John Leshy
Professor
UC-Hastings College of the Law
San Francisco, California
(Truth in Testimony Form)

Brandon Middleton
Attorney
Pacific Legal Foundation
Sacramento, California
(Truth in Testimony Form)

Panel II

The Honorable Dan Ashe
Director
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Washington, D.C.

Eric Schwaab
Assistant Administrator for Fisheries
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Washington, D.C.

BACKGROUND:

This hearing will be the first of many oversight hearings on the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The focus of this hearing will be on how litigation has driven the ESA to the detriment of species and taxpayers. Saving endangered species is an important and worthy goal, yet the ESA statute’s deadlines and other provisions foster lawsuits that undermine its effectiveness and help environmental organizations use taxpayer dollars to sue the federal government. Regrettably, millions of taxpayer dollars are being spent by federal agency attorneys either defending litigation over the ESA or on actions to avoid anticipated litigation. This is precious money that could be used to recover species or to ensure policies that will balance species with economic activity and jobs.

Other Hearings in the Series:

  • Hearing - Full Committee Oversight Hearing on "The Impact of Catastrophic Forest Fires and Litigation on People and Endangered Species: Time for Rational Management of our Nation's Forests" (7/24/2012)

  • Hearing - Full Committee Oversight Hearing on "Taxpayer-Funded Litigation: Benefitting Lawyers and Harming Species, Jobs and Schools" (6/19/2012)

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