COLORADO SPRINGS — A group of lawmakers from the US House is demanding an oversight hearing to look into the Bureau of Land Management’s Wild Horse and Burro Program.

This move was prompted by the deaths of 145 wild horses at the BLM facility in Cañon City. It started with an outbreak of a typically preventable equine influenza that killed nine horses.

Since then, investigators found the facility noncompliant on 13 policies, including failure to vaccinate horses.

In March, Governor Jared Polis called for a halt to planned roundups of wild horses this summer, but BLM moved forward with a roundup in the Piceance-East Douglas Herd Management Area, anyhow, citing poor condition of horses and range conditions there.

“Given the outbreak at the Cañon City facility, I have serious doubts that the proposed roundup in the Piceance Basin can or should go on as planned,” said Governor Polis at the time. “The health and wellbeing of the horses should be the foundation of any proposed activity, and placing them in a confined setting susceptible to disease outbreaks does not seemingly fit that aim.”

More recently, lawmakers said they believe an oversight hearing would help hold BLM accountable for its treatment of the animals.

BLM has said reducing the horse population in specific areas helps balance out the environment so they don’t overgraze the the native grasslands.

“Eventually, they will completely consume their local ecosystem,” BLM Director of Communications Steven Hall has told FOX21 News.