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Committee to Hold Pennsylvania Field Hearing on the Impacts of the Northern Long Eared Bat’s Federal Endangered Species Act Listing
Potential Listing Could Negatively Affect Pennsylvania & 37 Other States While Doing Little to Protect Bats

WASHINGTON, D.C., August 28, 2014 -

The House Natural Resources Committee will hold a Full Committee field hearing in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania on September 8, 2014 on “The Northern Long Eared Bat: The Federal Endangered Species Act and the Impacts of a Listing on Pennsylvania and 37 Other States.”

This hearing will examine questions regarding bat data and non-human-caused disease, as well as the likely negative impacts that a federal endangered listing of the Northern Long Eared Bat under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) would have on important activities such as farming. The Northern Long Eared Bat is one of hundreds of species included in the Department of the Interior’s 2011 settlements with two groups that requires listing decisions by 2016. A final decision for the Northern Long Eared Bat could be made within the next several months. Witnesses at this hearing will testify about the real economic impacts of this potential listing on Pennsylvania citizens without any measurable benefits for the bat.

“Similar to the listing and habitat designation of the Northern Spotted Owl over 20 years ago, this is a potentially sweeping decision that affects portions of 38 states.  It is vital that a decision of this magnitude be based on actual data, not settlement deadlines, and that it includes input from affected landowners and stakeholders not only from Pennsylvania, but from the rest of the two-thirds of the United States that would be impacted,” said Natural Resources Committee Chairman Doc Hastings (WA-04).

“This hearing is part of the House Natural Resources Committee’s effort to improve and update the Endangered Species Act. I want to thank Chairman Doc Hastings for initiating this timely hearing on the proposal by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to designate the Northern Long Eared Bat as endangered, which will have sweeping effects on a range of economic sectors in 38 states including Pennsylvania,” said Rep. Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson (PA-05).

“I support the Endangered Species Act’s (ESA) goal to preserve and protect domestic species. The proposal to list the Northern Long-Eared Bat on the ESA is another example of government rushing forward with a regulation that would have significant and far-reaching impacts on the economy, in this case, home building, farming, manufacturing, and even land management for ecological purposes. This hearing is an important opportunity to hear from local stakeholders on the negative effects that this potential listing would have on local communities and the U.S. Department of the Interior and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service should fully evaluate the ramifications of this proposal to find a solution that protects the bat while allowing activities that minimally affect it to continue," said Rep. Scott Perry (PA-04).

WHAT:

Full Committee oversight field hearing on:
“The Northern Long Eared Bat: The Federal Endangered Species Act and Impacts of a Listing on Pennsylvania and 37 Other States”

WHEN:

Monday, September 8, 2014
10:00 AM EST

WHERE:

Hearing Room 1 – North Office Building
Pennsylvania State Capitol Complex
North 3rd Street
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

Visit the Committee Calendar for additional information, once it is made available.  The meeting is open to the public and a live video stream will be broadcast at http://naturalresources.house.gov/live.

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Contact: Committee Press Office 202-226-9019

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