Central Park horses could be slaughtered without carriage industry, Bloomberg warns

Credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images
Should horse-drawn carriages be banned as both leading mayoral candidates would like, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said he assumes all the animals will die.
Credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Should horse-drawn carriages be banned as both leading mayoral candidates would like, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said he assumes all the animals will die. 

“If you do that, yeah, I assume all the horses will go to slaughter,” Bloomberg said Tuesday when asked about the effects of shutting down the industry, including the horses being slaughtered.

The mayor said that even if enough funds are raised to care for the animals at sanctuaries, they will only take up space and cause the deaths of other horses.

“That’s just obviously what’s going to happen if they go ahead,” the mayor said.

Both Democratic candidate Bill de Blasio and Republican Joe Lhota support a bill before the City Council banning the practice, but Bloomberg said that the move would hurt horses and carriage drivers.

“These horses work, like you, like me. There’s a few hundred people that work in this industry who support their families based on it,” he said.

The industry is well-regulated, the mayor said. City law mandates the horses work no more than nine hours at a time, be covered with blankets in the winter, not work in temperatures over 90 degrees and have five weeks of vacation a year.

Allie Feldman, executive director of New Yorkers for Clean, Livable and Safe Streets, or NYCLASS, said the anti-carriage group is “committed” to finding the funds to house more than 200 horses in the industry. (However, as the New York Daily News reported, Feldman would not provide specifics on how the money might be obtained.)

“Mayor Bloomberg is fear-mongering and being completely disingenuous in suggesting that there would be any slaughter of horses associated with the ending of the abusive horse carriage industry,” Feldman said.

But Bloomberg said he’s hoping New Yorkers will realize “there’s nothing really wrong” with the industry. People do, after all, use animals for a variety of things, he said.

“We keep animals as pets. We slaughter animals for food,” the mayor said. “We use animals and have always used animals to help us feed ourselves and our families. To work. We use animals in the military, we use animals for peaceful purposes.”

Though Bloomberg added that visitors and New Yorkers “seem to enjoy” the carriages, he said he’s only been on one or two rides himself.

“Not in the last 20 years,” the mayor said when asked if he’s ever taken a horse-drawn trip. “Once for sure. I’ve been living here since 1966, so it’s been a long time and certainly not recently.”

Follow Anna Sanders on Twitter: @AnnaESanders



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…

Local

MTA fares still increasing 4 percent in newly…

The agency said the 4 percent increases, previously announced in December, will remain steady even as the MTA deals with increasing labor costs.

Local

De Blasio, Bratton defend city's efforts after Eric…

Mayor Bill de Blasio justified the city's response to the death of Eric Garner, a Staten Island man who died while in police custody earlier this month.

National

PHOTO: New Zealand Heral uses wrong image to…

The New Zealand Herald made a terrible mistake of using the wrong image to illustrate the tragic death of Staff Sergeant Guy Boyland – a New Zealand-born Israeli soldier who…

Movies

Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."

Movies

'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.

Television

'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."

Television

TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

MLB

Joe Torre: I'm in Hall of Fame because…

Joe Torre spent 18 years putting together a near Hall of Fame career as a player. But it was the 12 years he spent as…

Travel

Glasgow: Hey, hey, the gangs aren't here

This European city has done a good job getting rid of its more violent residents and revitalizing with artists.

Education

Babson College tops list of best colleges for…

Money magazine has just released its inaugural list of "The Best Colleges for Your Money" -- and the answers have surprised many. Babson College, which…

Education

NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

Through a program sponsored by CampInteractive, the high schoolers designed their own community-focused apps.

Tech

The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.