Pennsylvania Bill Threatens Entire Wildlife Conservation Model

Share Button

Take Action Today! Pennsylvania sportsmen should contact their state representatives and ask them to vote NO on House Bill 1483. House Bill 143 is an unnecessary and likely harmful expansion of state government that would politicize and decimate wildlife management and conservation. Pennsylvania members can find their state representative by using the Sportsmen’s Alliance Legislative Action Center.

House Bill 1483, sponsored by Rep, David M. Maloney (R-Boyertown), would dismantle the North American Model of Wildlife Conservation in Pennsylvania. The North American model holds that wildlife resources are owned by the people, and managed by professional biologists, to ensure sustainability. This system, which   has been used by all fifty states for more than 100 years, has resulted in unprecedented recovery of both game and nongame species, and has made Pennsylvania one of the top hunting states in the country. HB 1483 would remove the state’s trained biologists from the decision-making process concerning deer management, and instead, use political appointees.

The North American model was designed to remove political influence from wildlife management, putting the needs of the resources ahead of the constantly changing political environment that can exist in state capitols. In addition to hunting opportunities, the North American model created an engine that pumps more than $1.6 billion each year into Pennsylvania’s economy, while supporting more than 15,000 jobs. 

House Bill 1483 threatens wildlife, habitat and the hunting economy by replacing the current system described above with a politically driven system controlled by untrained advisors who will dictate wildlife management policies to the Pennsylvania Game Commission. While HB 1483 is aimed only at whitetail deer management (the most popular type of hunting in the state), it establishes a precedent that can easily be expanded to other game species and other wildlife, including endangered species.

Establishing a precedent that takes management authority away from wildlife experts each time there is some disagreement over policy will result in volatile swings in wildlife management based on which party, faction or special-interest group holds the reins of power each legislative session in Pennsylvania. This is exactly what the North American model was created to prevent.   

House Bill 1483 also likely threatens Pennsylvania’s share of excise tax revenues from the federal government that come from the purchase of firearms, ammunition and archery equipment. The funds, known as Pittman Robertson funds, are administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which mandates that wildlife and habitat be managed scientifically.

About the Sportsmen’s Alliance: The Sportsmen’s Alliance protects and defends America’s wildlife conservation programs and the pursuits – hunting, fishing and trapping – that generate the money to pay for them. 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 possible. Stay connected to Sportsmen’s Alliance: OnlineFacebookTwitter and Instagram.