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U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance Foundation News  - Sportsmen Win Court Battle to Protect Wildlife Management

 

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U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance Foundation
Formerly the Wildlife Conservation Fund of America
801 Kingsmill Parkway, Columbus, OH  43229
Ph. 614/888-4868 * Fax 614/888-0326
Website: www.ussportsmen.org * E-mail: info@ussportsmen.org

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Doug Jeanneret (614) 888-4868 x 212
March 12, 2002 Beth Ruth (614) 888-4868 x 214

Sportsmen Win Court Battle to Protect Wildlife Management

(Columbus) - A court ruling yesterday deals a major setback to an insidious
campaign that has worked for years to remove sportsmen as the funding source
for this nation's wildlife programs.

The U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance Foundation (formerly the Wildlife Conservation
Fund of America) had been fighting a lawsuit filed by the Sierra Club
against the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) and the United
States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS).  In his ruling, Judge Richard
Enslen ruled against the Sierra Club, clearing the way for
sportsman-supported wildlife conservation to continue.

In the suit, the Sierra Club made five specific complaints against the MDNR
and the USFWS.  The complaints involved land management issues, including
forestry practices that benefit game species including white-tailed deer,
wild turkey and ruffed grouse, as well as various non-game animals.

Other sportsmen's organizations working on the effort included the National
Wild Turkey Federation, the Michigan United Conservation Clubs and the
Ruffed Grouse Society.

"We had to get involved because we knew that a ruling in Michigan in favor
of the environmentalists would spell the end of programs that have produced
abundant wildlife for hunters and anglers across the country," said Rick
Story, U. S. Sportsmen's Alliance Foundation vice president.  "This victory
protects hunting programs for all sportsmen and will go far toward curbing
the spread of these cases to other states. "   

The Sierra Club has filed several suits in recent years that challenged the
use of Pittman-Robertson (P-R) and Dingell-Johnson (D-J) dollars for state
wildlife programs that include hunting, fishing and trapping.  The P-R and
D-J programs distribute funding to the states generated by an excise tax on
sporting arms and ammunition and fishing gear. The tax is borne by hunters
and anglers.

Story explained the significance of the latest court decision. 

"This victory sets another precedent to ensure that sportsmen remain in the
funding picture for fish and wildlife conservation," he said.  "In 1996, we
prevailed over the Sierra Club in a suit that challenged the use of P-R
dollars for a moose management program in Vermont.  When the Sierra Club
goes to another state with its next suit, the judge will have two rulings
favorable to sportsmen on which to base a decision."    

The U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance Foundation protects and defends America's
wildlife conservation programs and the pursuits - hunting, fishing and
trapping - that generate the money to pay for them.  The U.S. Sportsmen's
Alliance Foundation is responsible for public education, legal defense and
research.  Its mission is accomplished through several distinct programs
coordinated to provide the most complete defense capability possible. For
more information about the U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance Foundation and its
work, call (614) 888-4868 or visit its website, www.ussportsmen.org.

--30-

Editor's Note:
At the beginning of 2002, the Wildlife Conservation Fund of America changed
its name to the U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance Foundation.  This change was made
so that our organization could position itself to better serve the nation's
sportsmen and sportswomen.  Our organization can best be described as "the
U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance Foundation, formerly the Wildlife Conservation
Fund of America."  We are trying to avoid using the acronym "USSAF" to help
build familiarity among the sportsmen's community with our new name. Thanks
for your help.
 

 

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02/27/06