A horse veterinarian who conducted a study on stress levels in carriage horses gave a presentation to City Council members on Wednesday and claimed that the horses are not stressed, the Daily News reports. Joe Bertone, a specialist in equine medicine at Western University of Health Sciences, told several council members and their representatives that his study found carriage horses’ cortisol levels, which spike during times of stress, are low.

Bertone’s study, however, was paid for by the carriage industry, and reported by the tabloid that outrights advocates for the carriages.

The City Council remains torn over whether to ban carriage horses in New York City. Mayor de Blasio advocates for the ban, siding with animal rights activists who claim the carriages are dangerous to both horses and humans.

(Photo: Aymann Ismail/ANIMALNewYork)