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105th Congress Report
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
1st Session 105-179
SHACKLEFORD BANKS WILD HORSES PROTECTION ACT
July 14, 1997.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the
State of the Union and ordered to be printed
Mr. Young of Alaska, from the Committee on Resources, submitted the
R E P O R T
[To accompany H.R. 765]
[Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]
The Committee on Resources, to whom was referred the bill
(H.R. 765) to ensure maintenance of a herd of wild horses in
Cape Lookout National Seashore, having considered the same,
report favorably thereon without amendment and recommend that
the bill do pass.
Purpose of the Bill
The purpose of H.R. 765 is to ensure the maintenance of a
herd of wild horses in Cape Lookout National Seashore, North
Background and Need for Legislation
H.R. 765 amends the establishing legislation for the Cape
Lookout National Seashore (CALO) to direct the Secretary of the
Interior to permit 100 to 110 wild horses to remain on CALO and
be managed cooperatively between the National Park Service
(NPS) and the non-profit foundation, the Foundation for
Horses have inhabited the Core Banks of North Carolina,
including CALO, for over 300 years. When CALO was established
in 1966 there were approximately 100 wild horses roaming the
island, along with cattle, sheep, and goats. In 1978, a NPS
survey recorded 108 horses, 89 cattle, 144 sheep, and 121 goats
at CALO. In 1981, a NPS funded ecological resources study
concluded that removal of the feral cattle, sheep, and goats
would restore native vegetation on the island. Subsequently, in
1986, all other livestock was removed from CALO, leaving a herd
of 90-100 wild horses. In 1995, the NPS initiated an
environmental assessment at CALO to determine management
alternatives for the wild horse herd. In February 1996, the NPS
selected an alternative that required the round-up of all the
wild horses, elimination of all horses carrying the equine
infectious anemia (EIA), and maintenance of a 50-60 horse herd.
This decision resulted in the November 1996 round-up of 185
wild horses, and the destruction of 76 carrying the EIA virus.
Following a second NPS round-up in March 1997, several more
horses were destroyed. At the present time, there are 103
healthy wild horses in the herd at CALO.
Wild horses have become an emotional national issue since
the passage of the Free Roaming Wild Horse and Burro Act of
1971. Feral horse management within the NPS has been
inconsistent. At Assateague Island National Seashore, Maryland,
and at Cumberland Island National Seashore, Georgia, the NPS
actively manages wild horse herds of more than 100 animals. In
1996, Congress prohibited the NPS from removing all feral
horses from the Ozark National Scenic Riverways, Missouri.
Currently, the management policy of the NPS requires removal of
all exotic (non-native) animals from NPS administered areas if
environmental assessments conclude vegetation is impacted.
There is no consideration for the cultural resource value of
wild horse herds. Because of this existing NPS policy, and the
previously documented inconsistency in which it is
administered, the only way to assure protection and survival of
a viable wild horse herd at CALO is to mandate that the 100-110
animal herd, which has historically roamed the island, be
H.R. 765 was introduced on February 13, 1997, by
Congressman Walter B. Jones, Jr. (R-NC). The bill was referred
to the Committee on Resources, and within the Committee to the
Subcommittee on National Parks and Public Lands. On April 10,
1997, the Subcommittee held a hearing on H.R. 765. On May 8,
1997, the Subcommittee met to mark up H.R. 765. No amendments
were offered and the bill was ordered favorably reported to the
Full Committee by voice vote. On June 25, 1997, the Full
Resources Committee met to consider H.R. 765. No amendments
were offered, and H.R. 765 was ordered favorably reported to
the House of Representatives by voice vote.
Committee Oversight Findings and Recommendations
With respect to the requirements of clause 2(l)(3) of rule
XI of the Rules of the House of Representatives, and clause
2(b)(1) of rule X of the Rules of the House of Representatives,
the Committee on Resources' oversight findings and
recommendations are reflected in the body of this report.
Constitutional Authority Statement
Article IV, section 3 and Article I, section 8 of the
Constitution of the United States grant Congress the authority
to enact H.R. 765.
Cost of the Legislation
Clause 7(a) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of
Representatives requires an estimate and a comparison by the
Committee of the costs which would be incurred in carrying out
H.R. 765. However, clause 7(d) of that Rule provides that this
requirement does not apply when the Committee has included in
its report a timely submitted cost estimate of the bill
prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget Office
under section 403 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974.
Compliance With House Rule XI
1. With respect to the requirement of clause 2(l)(3)(B) of
rule XI of the Rules of the House of Representatives and
section 308(a) of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, H.R.
765 does not contain any new budget authority, spending
authority, credit authority, or an increase or decrease in
revenues or tax expenditures.
2. With respect to the requirement of clause 2(l)(3)(D) of
rule XI of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the
Committee has received no report of oversight findings and
recommendations from the Committee on Government Reform and
Oversight on the subject of H.R. 765.
3. With respect to the requirement of clause 2(l)(3)(C) of
rule XI of the Rules of the House of Representatives and
section 403 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the
Committee has received the following cost estimate for H.R. 765
from the Director of the Congressional Budget Office.
Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate
Congressional Budget Office,
Washington, DC, July 8, 1997.
Hon. Don Young,
Chairman, Committee on Resources,
House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 765, the
Shackleford Banks Wild Horses Protection Act.
If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Deborah Reis.
June E. O'Neill, Director.
H.R. 765--Shackleford Banks Wild Horses Protection Act
Assuming appropriation of the necessary amounts, CBO
estimates that implementing H.R. 765 would increase federal
costs by about $50,000 annually. H.R. 765 would not affect
direct spending or receipts; therefore, pay-as-you-go
procedures would not apply. The bill contains no private-sector
or intergovernmental mandates as defined in the Unfunded
Mandates Reform Act of 1995 and would have no impact on the
budgets of state, local, or tribal governments.
H.R. 765 would require the National Park Service (NPS) to
maintain an existing herd of wild horses at Cape Lookout
National Seashore, North Carolina. In addition, the bill would
direct the NPS to:
Maintain the herd at a population of between 100 and
110 animals (which is between 35 and 50 more animals
than the agency would likely keep under current
Monitor the herd annually to assess the population
structure and health of the horses (and make its
findings available to the public), and
Enter into an agreement with the Founder for
Shackleford Horses, a local nonprofit group, that would
provide for cost-effective management of the herd and
would allow the foundation to adopt any horses that may
be removed from the seashore.
Finally, the bill would prohibit the NPS from removing (or
allowing the removal of) any horses from the seashore unless
(1) the population of the herd exceeds 110, (2) the results of
monitoring indicate reasons to be concerned about the viability
of the herd, or (3) there is an emergency or threat to public
health and safety.
Based on information obtained from the NPS, it appears that
most of the activities mandated by this legislation are already
underway or would occur in the near future under existing law.
The Shackleford Foundation is now the process of reviewing an
NPS-drafted Memorandum of Understanding under which the local
group would assist in managing and monitoring the herd
(although less intensively than under the bill) and would adopt
any horses that must be removed from the seashore. Because H.R.
765 would require the NPS to maintain a larger herd and perform
more comprehensive monitoring and assessment than current plans
call for, CBO estimates that implementing the bill would cost
about twice as much as the $50,000 that the agency would need
under any agreement that it would execute under existing
The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Deborah Reis.
The estimate was approved by Robert A. Sunshine, Deputy
Assistant Director for Budget Analysis.
Compliance With Public Law 104-4
H.R. 765 contains no unfunded mandates.
Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported
In compliance with clause 3 of rule XIII of the Rules of
the House of Representatives, changes in existing law made by
the bill, as reported, are shown as follows (new matter is
printed in italic and existing law in which no change is
proposed is shown in roman):
SECTION 5 OF THE ACT OF MARCH 10, 1966
AN ACT To provide for the establishment of the Cape Lookout National
Seashore in the State of North Carolina, and for other purposes
* * * * * * *
Sec. 5. (a) The Secretary shall administer the Cape Lookout
National Seashore for the general purposes of public outdoor
recreation, including conservation of natural features
contributing to public enjoyment. In the administration of the
seashore and the administrative site, the Secretary may utilize
such statutory authorities relating to areas administrated and
supervised by the Secretary through the National Park Service
and such statutory authorities otherwise available to him for
the conservation and management of natural resources as he
deems appropriate to carry out the purposes of this Act.
(b)(1) The Secretary, in accordance with this subsection,
shall allow a herd of free roaming horses in the seashore.
(2) Within 180 days after enactment of this subsection, the
Secretary shall enter into an agreement with the Foundation for
Shackleford Horses (a nonprofit corporation established under
the laws of the State of North Carolina) to provide for
management of free roaming horses in the seashore. The
(A) provide for cost-effective management of the
(B) allow the Foundation to adopt any of those horses
that the Secretary removes from the seashore
(3)(A) The Secretary shall accommodate this historic
population level of the free roaming horse herd in the
seashore, which shall be considered to be not less than 100
horses and not more than 110 horses.
(B) The Secretary may not remove, or assist in or permit
the removal of, any free roaming horses from Federal lands
within the boundaries of the seashore unless--
(i) the number of free roaming horses in the seashore
(ii) there is an emergency or a need to protect
public health and safety, as defined in the agreement
under paragraph (2); or
(iii) there is concern for the persistence and
viability of the horse population that is cited in the
most recent findings of annual monitoring of the horses
under paragraph (4).
(4) The Secretary shall annually monitor, assess, and make
available to the public findings regarding the population
structure and health of the free roaming horses in the national
(5) Nothing in this subsection shall be construed as
creating liability for the United States for any damages caused
by the free roaming horses to property located inside or
outside the boundaries of the seashore.