Illinois Slaughter Bill Returns to Committee

The sponsor of an Illinois bill that would reestablish horse processing in that state has referred it back to committee.

HB 4812 would repeal a state prohibition against horse processing for human consumption. The measure was poised for a floor vote in the state House of Representatives last month. However, bill sponsor Rep. Jim Sacia withdrew the bill before the vote could take place.

"He didn't think he had enough votes and referred the bill to the House Rules Committee," said Shelly Stark, Sacia's administrative assistant.

The Illinois bill is one of two slaughter measures recently put on hold. This week Tennessee Rep. Frank Niceley referred his bill, HB 1428, back to committee for further study.

HB 1428 directs the Tennessee Department of Agriculture to establish licensing, inspection, operational regulations, and fees for horse processing plants in that state. The measure was before the state House Finance, Ways and Means, and Budget Committee in late April when Niceley redirected it. The committee will consider the request in May.

Meanwhile, horse processing legislation in other states is either pending or has passed.

Earlier this month, Florida lawmakers passed HB 765. The bill prohibits the mutilation or killing of any horse and forbids the transport, distribution, sale, and purchase of horsemeat for human consumption. The bill now moves on to Gov. Charlie Crist.

Missouri HB 1747, which establishes horse processing plant operation and meat inspection regulations, remains pending.

About the Author

Pat Raia

Pat Raia is a veteran journalist who enjoys covering equine welfare, industry, and news. In her spare time, she enjoys riding her Tennessee Walking Horse, Sonny.

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