Western Region Legislative Update: March 2019

Ducks Unlimited's Western Region Public Policy Director Gary Link, DU Senior Vice President Al Montna, U.S. Congressman Mike Thompson, DU Western Region Director of Operations Mark Biddlecomb and DU’s Boreal Forest Director Dr. Fritz Reid pose for a group picture in Washington D.C.

by Gary Link, Western Region Public Policy Director
We are conservationists. We pay for that which we want to conserve, protect and enrich for wildlife and wildlife habitat. Our DU Policy Committee leaders do serious work in our states and below are a few examples of those conservation policy efforts; some do their work on golf courses, we do work in statehouses, Congress and duck blinds.

NEVADA

The 33rd Annual Ducks Unlimited Ducks in the Desert Las Vegas Continental Shoot, presented by Browning Arms, took place on Feb. 20-24, at the world-class Clark County Shooting Complex in North Las Vegas.

To honor the event, Continental Shoot Chairman Jim Konkel was presented a proclamation from the city of Las Vegas declaring  February 23rd, 2019 as Ducks Unlimited Continental Shoot Day.

 

UTAH

Utah’s Policy efforts have expanded exponentially in the Beehive State. The Member-to-Member Policy Pilot Project for the West was a great day of learning the value of public policy for our on-the-ground conservation mission.

This dedicated group of DU volunteers met on a Saturday, during duck season, at the Utah State Capitol to learn how to be amazing advocates for DU with their elected representatives and conservation goals in the state.

Legislation is moving forward right now to create 14,000 acres of a new waterfowl management area on the north end of the Great Salt Lake. DU is supporting this effort. The newly elected author, Representative Casey Snider is a waterfowler, knows the value of wetland conservation, and wanted to showcase his waterfowling conservation passion on his lapel while presenting his first of many wetlands/waterfowl bills in committee.

Stay tuned for more great news coming out of Utah.

IDAHO

While at a meeting set up by the Idaho Chamber of Commerce, DU was invited to meet with Governor Brad Little. Newly-elected and excited to lead Idahoans, the Governor (center in picture) spoke with DU’s Idaho Regional Director Mond Warren and Director of Public Policy Gary Link about the value and benefits hunters and conservationists bring to the table for waterfowl and habitat. Governor Little was excited to hear about the 2nd Annual DU Great Outdoor Northwest Expo coming up this spring in Idaho. Another great DU event to spread our conservation message to a good conservationist governor.

WASHINGTON D.C.

DU Conservation, Policy, and Event Fundraising held a public policy fly-in in Washington D.C. to discuss NAWCA reauthorization and to build and maintain our D.C. relationships. (In picture above) DU Western Region Director Mark Biddlecomb, Gary Link and DU’s Boreal Forest Director Dr. Fritz Reid took extra effort to meet and greet with Congressman John Garamendi.

The group also met with Senator Diane Feinstein, Congressman Mike Thompson, as well as the staffs of Chair of House Natural Resources Congressman Raul Grijalva and Congressman Eric Swalwell. The group later bumped into Congressman Doug LaMalfa in the private hallway behind the House Floor and chatted with him for a bit .

For more information, contact Gary Link at glink@ducks.org/916-524-3880