Please Sign In

Please enter a valid username and password
  • Log in with Facebook
» Not a member? Take a moment to register
» Forgot Username or Password

Why Register?
Signing up could earn you gear (click here to learn how)! It also keeps offensive content off our site.

Conservation Measures Suddenly Gain Momentum in Congress

Recent Comments

Categories

Recent Posts

Archives

Syndicate

Google Reader or Homepage
Add to My Yahoo!
Add to My AOL

The Conservationist
in your Inbox

Enter your email address to get our new post everyday.

February 11, 2014

Conservation Measures Suddenly Gain Momentum in Congress

By Bob Marshall

In an earlier life, when I covered sports that involved balls, a coach once told me “Momentum is a factor because the players think it is.”
 
You don’t need to be Aristotle to figure that one out. But the observation came to mind because there has certainly been a sudden, positive momentum to sportsmen’s concerns in Washington. And, just maybe, Congress is finally doing right by sportsmen because its members finally think it’s the right thing to do.
 
Just days after the two-year struggle to get the new Farm Bill enacted finally ended in victory, three more important bills for sportsmen have a stiff wind at their backs.
 
The House easily passed the Sportsmen’s Heritage and Recreational Enhancement Act (H.R. 3590), supported by major sportsmen’s groups. Its major focus is language strengthening laws that sanction hunting, fishing, and other recreation on federal lands, reaffirming the current practice of having the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service determine the use of lead-based ammunition and fishing tackle on federal lands, and allowing the purchase of duck stamps online — a long overdue convenience for waterfowlers.
 
The Senate version of that effort, the Bipartisan Sportsmen’s Act of 2014, was introduced this week. It combines several other measures:
- Recreational Fishing and Hunting Heritage Opportunities Act (S.170) would require federal land managers to consider how management plans affect hunting, fishing, and recreational shooting, and to keep their lands open to those activities.

- Making Public Lands Public would require that 1.5 percent of annual Land and Water Conservation Fund monies be made available to secure public access to existing federal lands that have restricted access to hunting, fishing, and other recreational activities.

- Permanent Electronic Duck Stamp Act of 2013 (S.738) would authorize the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to allow any state to provide federal duck stamps online.

- North American Wetlands Conservation Act Reauthorization (S.741) would reauthorize NAWCA through fiscal year 2017. That act provides matching grants to organizations, state and local governments, and private landowners for the acquisition, restoration, and enhancement of wetlands critical to the habitat of migratory birds.

- National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Reauthorization (S.51) would reauthorize NFWF, a nonprofit that preserves and restores native wildlife species and habitats.

- Hunting, Fishing and Recreational Shooting Protection Act (S.1505) would exempt lead fishing tackle from being regulated under the Toxic Substances Control Act.

- Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act (S.1212) would enable states to allocate a greater proportion of federal funding to create and maintain shooting ranges.
 
Finally, all waterfowlers should be encouraged that the Migratory Bird Habitat Investment and Enhancement Act (S. 1865) has been moved to the Senate floor. This would raise the price of the federal duck stamp from $15 to $25 in an effort to allow vital waterfowl habitat conservation programs to keep face with the rapidly rising cost of farmlands.
 
Of course, none of this welcome momentum means sportsmen can celebrate. They need to contact their congressional delegations and insist on support.
 
Which reminds me of another expression I often heard during those dark days when I covered ball sports: “Potential means you haven’t done anything yet.”
 
So keep those emails and letters flowing.

Comments (3)

Top Rated
All Comments
from Steven L. Bunt wrote 9 weeks 1 day ago

OH boy a new FEE, TAX, Contribution to waterfowl habitat.

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from FirstBubba wrote 9 weeks 1 day ago

If you're headed for the edge of a cliff, "momentum" IS NOT your friend!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from kingebrit wrote 9 weeks 1 hour ago

For the Senate Bipartisan Sportsmen's Act, sportsmen should also be excited that it includes the reauthorization of the Federal Land Transaction Facilitation Act (FLTFA), an important conservation program for the west that often results in more public access for hunting and fishing.

A few examples of past FLTFA projects:

1. North Platte River SRMA, Wyoming, 274 acres, 1.3 miles of river frontage access at a “Blue Ribbon/Class I” trout fishery.
2. Upper Snake South Fork SRMA/ACEC, Idaho, over 1,700 acres—world class fishing, floating, scenic river, and abundant big game and other wildlife
3. Elk Springs ACEC, New Mexico, 2,280 acres, provides forage for big game habitat–Jemez Mountain elk, deer herds and other animals, and public access for recreation.

More info at www.fltfa.org

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

from FirstBubba wrote 9 weeks 1 day ago

If you're headed for the edge of a cliff, "momentum" IS NOT your friend!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from kingebrit wrote 9 weeks 1 hour ago

For the Senate Bipartisan Sportsmen's Act, sportsmen should also be excited that it includes the reauthorization of the Federal Land Transaction Facilitation Act (FLTFA), an important conservation program for the west that often results in more public access for hunting and fishing.

A few examples of past FLTFA projects:

1. North Platte River SRMA, Wyoming, 274 acres, 1.3 miles of river frontage access at a “Blue Ribbon/Class I” trout fishery.
2. Upper Snake South Fork SRMA/ACEC, Idaho, over 1,700 acres—world class fishing, floating, scenic river, and abundant big game and other wildlife
3. Elk Springs ACEC, New Mexico, 2,280 acres, provides forage for big game habitat–Jemez Mountain elk, deer herds and other animals, and public access for recreation.

More info at www.fltfa.org

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Steven L. Bunt wrote 9 weeks 1 day ago

OH boy a new FEE, TAX, Contribution to waterfowl habitat.

-1 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment