Wild horses facing removal in North Dakota park get another ally in Congress |


NORTH DAKOTA

Wild horses facing removal find ally in Congress

BISMARCK — Advocates for some 200 wild horses roaming North Dakota’s Theodore Roosevelt National Park are hoping a signal of support from Congress will prevent the removal of the beloved animals from the rugged landscape.

A National Park Service decision is expected around April as to the horses’ future in the park’s colorful, rolling Badlands. It’s part of an ongoing process to craft a park management plan for “livestock” — a term horse advocates reject.

Republican Sen. John Hoeven ‘s legislation, tucked in the annual Interior and Environment budget bill that Congress passed and President Joe Biden signed, strongly recommends that the Park Service keep the horses in place. It also signals a potential future action that would deny any funding intended to remove them.

A remaining question is how many horses would ensure the long-term preservation of the herd. Advocates want to see a genetically viable herd of at least 150 horses to avoid inbreeding issues. Park Superintendent Angie Richman has said the horses, if they ultimate stay, would still have to be reduced to 35 to 60 animals under a 1978 environmental assessment.

Advocates have feared a predetermined ouster of the horses, whose predecessors were accidentally fenced into the park in the 1950s and were subject to subsequent roundups.

The horses’ origins include Native American tribes, area ranches and domestic stallions introduced to the park from the late 1970s through the 1990s, said Castle McLaughlin, who researched the horses as a graduate student in the 1980s.

ARIZONA

Biden hails $8.5 billion investment in chipmaker Intel

CHANDLER — President Joe Biden on March 20 celebrated an agreement to provide Intel with up to $8.5 billion in direct funding and $11 billion in loans for computer chip plants around the country, talking up the investment in the political battleground state of Arizona and calling it a way of “bringing the future back to America.”

The Biden administration has predicted that the cash infusion should help the U.S. boost its global share of advanced chip production from zero to 20%. The Democratic president highlighted the investment while visiting Intel’s Ocotillo campus in Chandler, Arizona, where he inspected silicon wafers and expressed amazement at how thin the chips are.

In remarks after a tour, Biden pivoted to the impact his policies could have on the U.S. economy as he tries to translate his policy wins into a political boost ahead of November’s election. Intel plans to invest in facilities in Arizona, Ohio, Oregon and New Mexico, with some of the government money helping to support workforce development.

The U.S. designs advanced chips, but its inability to make them domestically has emerged as a national security and economic risk.

The funding announcement came amid the heat of the 2024 presidential campaign. Biden has been telling voters that his policies have led to a resurgence in U.S. manufacturing and job growth. His message is a direct challenge to former President Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, who raised tariffs while in the White…



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