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Bill would make it easier to kill Oregon wolves

GRANTS PASS, Ore. (AP) — Frustrated that a judge has blocked a state kill order on two members of Oregon’s first wolf pack, the Oregon Cattlemen’s Association is pushing legislation to boost the state’s authority over the predators.Conservation groups that sued the state to stop the order say the rancher bill is an effort to circumvent their lawsuit and the state Endangered Species Act, which the association’s legislative chairman denied.

Bill Hoyt, of the Cattlemen Association, said the group would rather the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, not judges, make decisions about wolves.

“It is intended to make clear what ODFW has the power to do under what has been agreed upon in the Oregon wolf plan,” said Hoyt, a Cottage Grove cattle rancher and past president of the association.

He added that the association wants to get some conservation groups on board, because without them the bill is unlikely to pass.

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