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Congressional panel cuts funds for animal ID program

By Steve Miller | Rapid City Journal

A congressional conference committee has cut funding for a National Animal Identification System by about two-thirds, drawing praise from the South Dakota Stockgrowers Association, which has long opposed a mandatory animal ID system.

The Stockgrowers, the group's national affiliate, R-CALF USA, and about 90 other organizations had asked the conference committee to adopt the House version of the Agriculture Appropriations Bill, which eliminates money for the National Animal Identification System.

The conference committee on Thursday lowered the amount available for the program from the $14.67 million requested by USDA to $5.3 million.

"A cut of this size makes it extremely hard for USDA to move ahead with this program," said Stockgrowers Regional Vice President Bill Kluck of Mud Butte.

Earlier hearings noted that USDA had spent more than $140 million and had been able to register barely a third of the livestock premises' in the United States, Kluck said in [ READ MORE ]

Contact Steve Miller at 394-8415 or [email protected]

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