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Idaho ‘Ag Gag’ Bill Signed Into Law By Gov. Otter

Author: Kristy

by  By JOHN MILLER
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In this March 11, 2009 file photo, a line of Holstein dairy cows feed through a fence at a farm outside Jerome, Idaho. (AP Photo/Charlie Litchfield, File)

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter signed a bill Friday that imposes jail time and fines against people who secretly film animal abuse at Idaho’s agricultural facilities.

Otter inked the new law swiftly, just two days after it cleared its final legislative hurdle in the House.

The bill came in response to videos released by Los Angeles-based vegetarian and animal rights group Mercy for Animals showing workers at Bettencourt Dairy beating, stomping, dragging and sexually abusing cows in 2012.

Idaho’s $2.5 billion dairy industry complained the group used its videos not to curb abuse, but to unfairly hurt Bettencourt’s business. Bettencourt operates dairies at numerous locations that include more than 60,000 cows and is one of the largest dairy companies in the U.S.

Otter, a rancher, said the measure will help make agriculture producers more secure in their property and their livelihood. READ MORE

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