Horses

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, Jan/Feb 1994:

New York City entered 1994
with no regulations protecting carriage
horses, after outgoing mayor David
Dinkins vetoed a bill on December 29 that
would have amended the 1989 Carriage
Horse Protection Act to allow horsedrawn
carriages to operate in city traffic except
during the rush hours, when they will be
restricted to Central Park, and to extend
the workday for carriage horses from eight
hours to nine. Carriages had been restrict-
ed to Central Park all day and barred from
operating during rush hours. Introduced
by councillor Noach Dear, the bill was
approved by the New York City Council on
December 21, 29-17, which was consid-
ered a close vote. The Carriage Horse
Action Committee had sought reauthoriza-
tion of the 1989 act, supported by the the-
atre industry and other groups concerned
that the carriages discourage business by
slowing down traffic, plus a faction that
claims the carriage horse trade is a “green
card factory” for Irish immigrants, who
dominate the workforce of drivers and
grooms. There are now 396 licensed car-
riage drivers, up from 266 in 1991, but
there are only 140 horses and 68 carriages
actually out on the job. The CHAC, head-
ed by Peggy Parker, may now seek a total
ban on horsedrawn vehicles in Manhattan.

Dances With Wolves author
Michael Blake is maintaining billboards in
Denver, Los Angeles, Reno, and Tucson
to protest ongoing Bureau of Land
Management horse removals from the
range. The BLM contends there are still
45,000 wild horses at large in eight western
states; Blake, who financed a private aeri-
al survey of the Nevada wild horse popula-
tion last year, claims the official estimate
is at least two times too high.
Twenty-nine horses worth $2
million , including racehorses, riding
ponies, and brood mares, died in a
December 28 barnfire at Manorville, Long
Island. Barnfires are the leading cause of
preventable accidental death of livestock.
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