- Associated Press - Wednesday, August 5, 2015

PHOENIX (AP) - An Arizona state lawmaker says the U.S. Forest Service has agreed not to immediately remove and possibly auction up to 100 wild horses from the Tonto National Forest along the Salt River northeast of Phoenix.

Republican Rep. Kelly Townsend says she met with two Forest Service officials Wednesday and they agreed not to start the roundup and instead “wait until Congress goes back into session in September before taking any action.”

Forest Service officials call the animals a safety concern in the highly-used area.

The plans triggered protests from wild horse advocacy groups and elected officials. Sens. John McCain and Jeff Flake and three members of Congress sent letters Wednesday urging Forest Service officials to halt the roundup.

Townsend says the time-out will allow for an alternative plan.

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