February 12, 2019
The Boone and Crockett Club, the oldest wildlife conservation group in the U.S., today praised the Senate’s passage of the Natural Resources Management Act (S. 47), a bipartisan package of bills that includes several key pieces of the Sportsmen’s Act.
“This is good news for all sportsmen concerned about access to places to hunt, fish, target shoot and recreate on public lands,” said Timothy C. Brady, president of the Boone and Crockett Club. “Hunters and recreational shooters need Congress’ help and today was a good first step.”
The Natural Resources Management Act addresses several priorities for American hunters, anglers and recreational shooters:
- Declares that federal lands are open to public recreation, except in limited circumstances;
- Guarantees funding for public access enhancement projects under the Land and Water Conservation Fund;
- Requires public reporting of reimbursements of legal fees on lawsuits against the government – a step toward reigning in litigation;
- Authorizes hunters to transport bows through National Parks;
- Authorizes use of qualified volunteer hunters in programs to control wildlife populations in National Parks; and,
- Allows BLM to lease or permit shooting ranges on federal land;
Of these critical steps forward, funding for public access is one the Club worked diligently on to have included that is a straightforward benefit for sportsmen. Another addition that the Club believes was an imperative for inclusion that may be of a less obvious benefit is reporting on legal fees. Nonstop litigation against our expert agencies has been crippling the proven systems we have to properly manage wildlife and habitats.
Brady said, “We thank Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski and Democratic Senator Joe Manchin, who lead the Committee and members of Senate in the passage of this critical legislation. This package is a testament of the strength and unity of the sportsmen’s community, and we urge the House of Representatives to pass it as well.”