Draft resolution on monarch butterfly

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Draft resolution on monarch butterfly

Postby Amy Smith » Sun Apr 26, 2015 6:17 pm

Council Member Leslie Pool offers the following draft resolution, which she'll introduce for review at the April 29 meeting of the Council Committee on Open Space, Environment & Sustainability.
Amy Smith
Policy Advisor
City Council Member Leslie Pool, District 7

WHEREAS, a core principle of the Imagine Austin Comprehensive Plan is the integration of nature into the city; and

WHEREAS, Austin residents have embraced the value of a healthy, environmentally friendly city, borne out by the National Wildlife Federation’s recent recognition of Austin as the top-ranked city for wildlife in the country; and

WHEREAS, Austin has long been a stop for the monarch butterfly on its migratory path to and from Mexico each year, with Texas serving as one of the most important spring habitat areas for the species; and

WHEREAS, the monarch butterfly became the State Insect of Texas by a 1995 resolution introduced by former state Rep. Arlene Wohlgemuth and adopted by the Texas Legislature; and

WHEREAS, scientific studies point to the rapid decline of the monarch butterfly and other pollinators due to the destruction of the monarch’s exclusive larval host plant and critical food source – native milkweed – by the overuse of toxic herbicides across the U.S.; and

WHEREAS, because the decimation of the monarch has potential negative consequences for natural ecosystems as well as for human food production, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is currently studying the species to determine if it should be listed under the Endangered Species Act; and

WHEREAS, on a national level and in Austin, the National Wildlife Federation and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service have undertaken efforts to reinvigorate milkweed and other nectar-producing plants to help restore monarch habitat in open spaces and suburban and urban gardens; and

WHEREAS, the National Wildlife Federation and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service are encouraging communities up and down I-35 to plant native milkweed;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF AUSTIN, the City Manager is directed to collaborate with the local offices of the National Wildlife Federation and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and initiate a process for incorporating native milkweed into the city’s landscape portfolio at Austin City Hall, city-owned buildings and properties, as well as the city’s vast preserve lands, parks, and open spaces.
Policy Advisor
Office of Leslie Pool, District 7
Amy Smith
 
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