SB 288 & 289: Scientific Wildlife Management

Summary:  (Identical to HB 4552 & 4553) This bill package establishes a right to hunt, fish and trap; provides free licenses to active-duty members of the military; grants the Natural Resources Commission exclusive authority to issue fisheries regulations and concurrent authority with the legislature to designate a game species.
Analysis:  The Scientific Wildlife Management Package accomplishes a number of positive actions for conservation, hunting, fishing, trapping and fish and wildlife species in Michigan.
SB 288 and HB 4552 provide free licenses to members of the military. They also share the legislature’s current exclusive authority to designate a game animal with the Natural Resources Commission, which is mandated to use sound science in its wildlife management decisions. The legislature retains the exclusive authority to remove a game species. SB 288 and HB 4552 also grant the Natural Resources Commission the exclusive authority to make fisheries regulations, as it currently has for game species.
The Senate-passed substitute for SB 288 eliminates the original $1 million appropriation and excludes mourning doves from the NRC's authority under the bill, since they were removed from the game list by referendum in 2006.
SB 289 and HB 4553 establish a right in Michigan to hunt, fish and trap and adds the protection of the rights to hunt, fish and trap as a purpose of the Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act.
Current Status: Signed into law as PA 21 & 22 of 2013.
MUCC Action: Supports the Scientific Wildlife Management Package. Joined with other conservation groups in organizing Camo at the Capitol, where citizens lobbied for passage of the bill. MUCC members and affiliates called legislators and Governor in support bill. 
Sponsors:  Sen. Tom Casperson (R – Escanaba), Rep. Jon Bumstead (R - Newago)
Co-Sponsors: Senators David Hildenbrand, Darwin Booher, Arlan Meekhof, Representativs Phil Potvin, Peter Pettalia, Ken Goike, Dan Lauwers, Joseph Graves, Terry L. Brown, Greg MacMaster, Paul Clemente, Tom Hooker, Dale W. Zorn, Rick Outman, Ken Yonker, Bruce R. Rendon, Roger Victory, Kenneth Kurtz, Amanda Price, Nancy Jenkins, Ben Glardon, Bradford C. Jacobsen, Rob VerHeulen, Bill Rogers, Cindy Denby, Tom McMillin, Kevin Cotter, Lisa Posthumus Lyons, Ed McBroom, Mike Shirkey, Kevin Daley, Ray Franz, Mike Callton, Klint Kesto,Joel Johnson, Gail Haines, Peter MacGregor, Kurt Heise, John Kivela, Al Pscholka, Eileen Kowall,Bill LaVoy, Charles M. Brunner, Joe Haveman
MUCC Policy Resolution(s):
AC310696 Seek to declare fish and wildlife of utmost importance and vest all authority in the Natural Resources Commission, remove fish and wildlife habitat management from political interference and give Natural Resources Commission adequate authority to carry on all essential phases of a broad conservation program. Assure the commission form of decisionmaking, public access and participation is present in natural resource decisions.

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