Kretz bill would create wolf sanctuary on Bainbridge Island

In response to a bill from a Puget Sound legislator that would ban the lethal removal of gray wolves, an Eastern Washington lawmaker is proposing to create a wolf sanctuary on Bainbridge Island. John Sattgast reports from the state Capitol.

 Radio Report Transcript

SATTGAST: (:75) Seventh District State Representative Joel Kretz of Okanogan County says it’s time to “share the love” of Eastern Washington predatory wolves with the folks in Puget Sound, who want to protect the critters.

A legislator representing Bainbridge Island has introduced legislation that would prohibit the lethal removal of gray wolves. In response, Kretz introduced House Bill 1639, which would create the state’s first gray wolf sanctuary on Bainbridge Island.

KRETZ (:20) “If that’s the kind of legislation that someone from Bainbridge Island is going to be running to impose on us who actually have wolves, maybe it would help broaden her mind a little bit to experience the benefits of wolves. So what better place than Bainbridge Island?”

SATTGAST: Kretz bill also provides guidance on when the state may use lethal removal of wolves on the island, specifically limiting such removal only after four dogs, four cats or even two children have been killed.

His message is simple: If Westside legislators who live on a protected island hundreds of miles away from wolves want to prohibit Eastern Washington ranchers and farmers from protecting their families and property, maybe it’s time to share those wolves.

KRETZ: (:08) “With this bill, we can deliver ‘em right to them. I’ve had lots of offers from the 7th District. If you need my stock trailer, I’ll bring a load of wolves.”

SATTGAST: The measure is awaiting a hearing in the House Rural Development, Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee. John Sattgast, Olympia.


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