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Carson City Advisory Board to Manage Wildlife for state constitutional amendment

John Barrette
jbarrette@nevadaappeal.com

Support for upgrades at Carson City’s Rifle Range and for a Nevada constitutional amendment to make hunting a right, rather than a privilege, came from a local wildlife management panel Monday.

But the city’s Advisory Board to Manage Wildlife withheld support from a petition aimed at banning fox-hunting competitions, as well as legislation providing an exemption from hunter safety education requirements.

The board voted to send to Scott Fahrenbruch of the city Parks and Recreation Department a letter supporting upgrading of the rifle range and plans to work with the Nevada Department of Wildlife and possible grants to help. Also in the audience and supporting improvements were Robert Boehmer, president of Nevada Operation Game Thief Citizens Board and a hunting safety instructor, and C.K. Baily, a wildlife advocate and fishing enthusiast.

The Parks and Recreation Commission previously recommended spending at least $15,000 on range upgrades, which may include some method of rest room facilities.

Support for Senate Joint Resolution 11, the constitutional amendment to preserve rights to hunt, fish and trap in the state was advocated by all present, including Boehmer and Baily. Gil Yanuck, a board member, said he wanted to preserve the opportunity to hunt, fish and trap for future generations. The recommendation goes to the Nevada Board of Wildlife Commissioners.

Also considered for recommendations to that state board were a position on a petition to ban coyote-hunting competitions and on Assembly Bill 136, which deals in part with hunter safety education. The chairman, a hunter safety instructor, was concerned about the legislation because it allowed an exemption from classes for handicapped persons, suggesting the alternative of another method used in Montana.

On the coyote hunting issue, board members agreed coyotes are predators and abatement and depredation on them is needed. Member James Powell called coyotes a menace to society in urban areas after Boehmer testified in Carson Valley, before depredation helped, some ranchers lost sheep in heavy percentages.

In other matters, the board heard state park and state wildlife department discussions are under way about what to do regarding wild mustangs at Washoe Lake north of Carson City. Jennifer Dawson, park supervisor at Washoe Lake State Park included that in a broader report and said afterward fencing might be considered to keep the horses out of harm’s way from traffic around the lake.

Yanuck at the meeting’s conclusion told fellow board members on Wednesday from 10 a.m. until noon there would be a meeting to discuss resident deer in urban areas. He said the session would be at Building 3 in the Parks and Recreation Department offices on Butti Way.