Here’s the status of some selected wildlife bills from the 2005 Legislature
The 2005 Legislature came to town, back in February, did its legislative thing until early June, went into several special sessions, finally adjourned and is now gone until 2007.
From a personal point of view, this last legislative session was a highly unusual one where a number of eyebrow-raising bills were introduced that could have adversely affected the wildlife world of Nevada.
I opposed some of those bills and felt they should not be enacted into law. Here’s what happened:
This bill would have had the Nevada State Board of Wildlife Commissioners review and approve the Department of Wildlife’s (NDOW) budget.
Don Q’s opinion: Budget approval is the sole responsibility of the Governor and does not belong to an appointed commission.
Final action on A.B. 90: This bill died in the Assembly Natural Resources committee.
This bill would have established a management area where a person may not take a mule deer unless it has at least three points on one antler.
Don Q’s opinion: This approach was tried, unsuccessfully, years ago, right here in our backyard in Carson City, as a four-point area. It was a significant failure in deer management, as it resulted in many bucks, less than four points, being taken illegally or being left illegally in the field after they were shot.
Final action on A.B. 115: Died in the Assembly Natural Resources committee.
This bill would have prohibited a deer hunter from applying for a tag in the year following the year in which he/she harvested a deer.
Don Q’s opinion: This bill was unfair because it would not apply to someone who would have purchased a depredation tag to hunt on private lands. The people who hunt on public lands (like you and I) would have been penalized, while those who bought those depredation tags could hunt each and every year.
Final action on A.B. 116: Died in the Assembly Ways and Means Commmittee.
This bill would have replaced a sportsman on the Wildlife Commission with an accountant.
Don Q’s opinion: You’ve probably read my previous column about how absurd this bill was, so enough said.
Final action on A.B. 152: Died in the Assembly Natural Resources committee.
This bill would have allowed a person with a big game hunting tag for private lands to hunt any surrounding area for up to one mile from that private land.
Don Q’s opinion: Apparently someone was greedy and wanted to hunt in an area much larger than they were entitled to hunt.
Final action on A.B. 173: Died in the Assembly Natural Resources committee.
This bill would have required that twenty-five percent of all monies in the Wildlife Account be spent on the management and control of natural predators of mule deer.
Don Q’s opinion: Twenty-five percent of all the proceeds of the sales of stamps, tags, permits and licenses was to be diverted to predator control at a time when NDOW is struggling just to try to make financial ends meet.
Final action on A.B. 226: Died in the Assembly Ways and Means Committee.
This bill would have required the issuance of a tag to hunt big game mammals to be submitted in person at a location to be specified by NDOW
Don Q’s opinion: This apparently was a reaction to the lawsuit brought by the Non-Resident hunting guide who sued Nevada.
Final action on A.B. 333: Died in the Assembly Natural Resources committee.
This bill would have proposed to create a special “Pioneer Drawing” for game tags for those who are at least 66 years old and who have been a resident of this state for at least 25 years.
Don Q’s opinion: I wrote a previous column about how unfair this bill would have been to other hunters, so enough said on that, too.
Final action on A.B. 453: Died in the Assembly Natural Resources committee.
Yahoo! As you can see, of those eight bills, all eight died in a committee.
It was a Grand Slam! So much for tinkering with Nevada’s wildlife world.
Many, many sincere thanks to all those folks who testified against that legislation.
Your hard work paid off!
• Bet Your Favorite Pigeon
Bet your favorite pigeon he can’t tell you who introduced most of those bills.
If he grins and says, “It was Assemblyman Jerry Claborn (D) of Las Vegas,” he wins this bet.