February 15, 2018
Today, the Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies was pleased to witness the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Federal Lands hearings on five bills, including Recovering America’s Wildlife Act (H.R.4647) and the Modernizing the Pittman-Robertson Fund for Tomorrow's Needs Act of 2017 (H.R.2591). The Association applauds Chairman Tom McClintock (R-CA) for his leadership in bringing H.R. 4647 and H.R. 2591 up for the subcommittee hearing today.
Recovering America’s Wildlife Act is bipartisan legislation that would redirect $1.3 billion in existing revenue from the development of energy and mineral resources on federal lands and waters and dedicate it to the Wildlife Conservation Restoration Program to conserve a full array of fish and wildlife. Congressman Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE) and Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (D-MI) introduced this bipartisan bill in December 2017.
The Modernizing the Pittman-Robertson Fund for Tomorrow's Needs Act of 2017 would clarify the purpose of the Pittman-Robertson (P-R) Fund to provide financial and technical assistance to the states for the promotion of hunting and recreational shooting. This would allow flexibility for state fish and wildlife agencies to use their P-R funds for the recruitment of sportsmen and women. House Representatives Austin Scott (R- GA), Jeff Duncan (R-SC), Gene Green (D-TX), and Marc Veasey (D-TX) introduced this bipartisan bill in May 2017.
“The Alliance greatly appreciates Chairman McClintock’s leadership in bringing the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act and the Modernizing the Pittman-Robertson Fund for Tomorrow's Needs Act of 2017 to the attention of the Subcommittee. This hearing is an important opportunity to advance H.R. 4647 and create a modern funding mechanism to conserve more than one-third of our nation’s at-risk fish and wildlife in a manner that is economically viable to both taxpayers and the regulated business community,” stated Virgil Moore, President of the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies and Director of Idaho Fish and Game. “Updating the P-R Fund (H.R. 2591) to allow states to use those monies for recruitment, retention and reactivation efforts is critical to ensuring increased participation of new sportsmen and women and thereby ensuring conservation funding in the future.”
These important and creative legislative initiatives aim to enhance wildlife ecosystems across our nation through constructive partnerships in states, as well as allowing a portion of P-R funds to be used for critical activities specifically designed to increase hunting and shooting sports participation.
Click here to view Bob Ziehmer’s testimony on Recovering America’s Wildlife Act (H.R.4647) and Modernizing the Pittman-Robertson Fund for Tomorrow's Needs Act of 2017 (H.R.2591). Bob Ziehmer is the Conservation Director of Bass Pro Shops, and Alliance Steering Committee member, and former director of the Missouri Department of Conservation and he was a member of the Blue Ribbon Panel on Sustaining America’s Diverse Fish & Wildlife Resources.
The Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies represents North America’s fish and wildlife agencies to advance sound, science-based management and conservation of fish and wildlife and their habitats in the public interest. The Association represents its state agency members on Capitol Hill and before the Administration to advance favorable fish and wildlife conservation policy and funding and works to ensure that all entities work collaboratively on the most important issues. The Association also provides member agencies with coordination services on cross-cutting as well as species-based programs that range from birds, fish habitat and energy development to climate change, wildlife action plans, conservation education, leadership training and international relations. Working together, the Association’s member agencies are ensuring that North American fish and wildlife management has a clear and collective voice.