News & Commentary
Editorial: Why does NM give elk-hunt permits to private landowners, fire commissioners who question the status quo?
By Albuquerque Journal Editorial Board
This editorial looks at the current flawed system in which New Mexico Game and Fish Commissioners are appointed and removed by the Governor with little to no oversight. This year, two commissioners were dismissed because their positions clashed with those of the governor. All appointed commissioners are supposed to by confirmed by the state Senate, although that has not happened in recent years. “The system is stacked so the only qualification to serve is showing fealty to the governor rather than making independent decisions about a resource you’re entrusted to manage and protect on behalf of the residents of New Mexico. That has to change.”
Wildlife for All’s Executive Director Kevin Bixby recently talked about wrestling wildlife governance reform from the tight grip of the hunting, fishing, and gun industries on Rewinding Earth’s podcast (Episode 92).
Three new Vermont Fish and Wildlife Board members with a love of hunting appointed without due process
By Emma Cotton
Gov. Phil Scott of Vermont recently appointed three new members to the state’s Fish and Wildlife Board. “All three cite a love of hunting that began during childhood.” Qualified candidates submitted applications – yet never received any reply. Appointments to commissions need to be transparent and follow due process.
By Fred Koontz & Adrian Treves
This op-ed examines Wisconsin’s Department of Natural Resources and its priorities (which are at odds with current human values and biodiversity needs). “Clarifying the DNR’s mandate around a top priority of conserving all wildlife for all people will provide a unifying direction for the floundering board and strengthen the department’s biodiversity mission. Changing the department’s purpose recognizes that government agencies require modifications as society’s needs and public values change.”
By Michael Doyle
TUS Fish and Wildlife Service plans to open and expand hunting and fishing at 19 wildlife refuges which will open up 54,000 acres of land to hunting and fishing. While the federal agency will limit these opportunities to non-lead shells, ammo, and tackle, opposing senators have argued that “Policies or actions that reduce or limit sportsmen activities necessarily implicate wildlife conservation programs by affecting state agencies’ revenue.” These legislators are holding funding hostage in wildlife policymaking by urging the FWS Director not to ban lead.
By Ashley Stimson
The California Fish and Game Commission (CFGC) recently designated four species of bumble bee as endangered species after California’s Superior Court ruled they fell under a broad definition of what constitutes a “fish”.
By Robert Toricelli
In this op-ed, former U.S. senator Torricelli makes the case for reform of the New Jersey Fish and Wildlife Council, explaining that many of the state’s regulations are not based on legitimate science.
Whose values count most in determining Vermont’s fish and wildlife priorities, regulations and public policies?
By Walter Medwid
In this op-ed Medwid writes, “Vermonters should rethink the focus of the Fish & Wildlife Department. Threats to biodiversity and shifting human values challenge the underpinnings of the department and the Fish & Wildlife Board…Whose values count most in determining Vermont’s fish and wildlife priorities, regulations, and public policies?”
By Fred Koontz.
In this op-ed by former Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission member Fred Koontz, he describes the current state of the state’s Department of Fish and Wildlife as a ‘political quagmire.’ “States are obligated to protect wildlife for current and future generations. The sad truth is that we are failing.”
By Chris Smith.
On April 1st, Roxy’s Law, which bans traps, snares, and poisons on public lands, went into effect in New Mexico. Despite this progress, New Mexico isn’t the beacon of wildlife management that it should be.