A kick in the pants to the Bureau of Land Management, who said they do not have money or room to corral the wild horses running roughshod over the West.

Environmental studies and BLM policy had called for an acceleration of roundups of this invasive species, but it won’t happen because the agency’s budget won’t allow it. Horse advocates and animal rights groups had sued to stop the acceleration, but a court decision is now a moot point since the BLM doesn’t plan to move forward anyway.

Locally, the Umailla Indian reservation and adjoining public and private lands are experiencing major environmental damage due to feral horses. And as hard as it may be for an equine-loving community to admit, this a problem that will get worse unless action is taken. And yes, that means lethal action.

It might not be enjoyable and it may not be easy, but the BLM and the CTUIR should continue to corral and euthanize wild horses. And Congress should overturn the ban on selling excess feral horses for slaughter.

A tip of the hat to the Hermiston city council for naming Byron Smith the first new city manager in 25 years.

While meeting with the public last week, Smith stood out from the other highly-qualified candidates for the position. Yesterday, we gave him some first-day advice, but now we’d just like to say good luck and hope he lives up to the high expectations placed on him by the councilors.

The city is headed in the right direction and we hope Smith keeps it on a growing path. This will be an important decade for the city, as it tries to step into its own and into a leadership role for the region. Smith can help shepherd that.

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