Gov. Dave Heineman says he will fight a national animal advocacy group "every step of the way" if its lobbyists attempt to curtail agriculture in Nebraska.
The Republican governor said Monday that he doesn't trust the Humane Society of the United States, which has opened an office in Omaha.
Some rural lawmakers and agriculture groups have voiced concern that the group, which is not affiliated with local humane societies, may try to push for stricter livestock welfare rules.
A group spokesman says the move to Nebraska was intended to help small farmers gain access to markets dominated by large-scale operations.
Heineman made the comments in a media conference call after he announced dates for the annual Governor's Ag Conference.
The event is set for Feb. 15 and 16 in Kearney.