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Mon April 19, 2004
Deadline Missed, Wolf Lawsuit on the Way
Cheyenne, WY – The state is ready to go forward with a lawsuit challenging the federal government's rejection of Wyoming's wolf management plan. Attorney General Pat Crank says the US Fish and Wildlife Service was given a deadline of Monday as their last chance to compromise over wolves. Crank says they've heard nothing back from the agency and should be ready to sue the federal government later in the week. Crank says they are alleging the federal government ignored scientific reviews and made their decision based on factors they shouldn't have considered notably political considerations and a fear of being sued by environmentalists. Crank says they will ask a US District Court in Cheyenne to require Fish and Wildlife officials to approve Wyoming's management plan and move forward with delisting. The lawsuit should be filed either Wednesday or Thursday. Wyoming's long-term goal is to have wolves removed from the endangered species list. Crank agrees that's a long ways off right now. In response to whether a lawsuit only serves to drag the delisting process out further, Crank says it was the state's only choice.