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    <font color="0000ff"><font size="+2">Sportsmen Join Lawsuit to Prevent Antis&#39; Misuse of ESA to Ban Hunting-</font></font> &#40;01/05&#41;
    Maine
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    &#40;Columbus&#41; Ė The U.S. Sportsmenís Alliance Foundation has filed to represent sportsmen in a precedent-setting lawsuit brought by animal activists to derail hunting, fishing and trapping for abundant game wherever endangered or threatened species exist.



    On Jan. 4, the U.S. Sportsmenís Alliance Foundation &#40;USSAF&#41; asked U.S. District Judge John A. Woodcock Jr. for permission to join a federal lawsuit brought by the Animal Protection Institute against the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. In October 2006, the animal rights group sued to expand endangered and threatened species protections to healthy and abundant wildlife populations.



    ďOur goal is to prevent the animal rights movement from manipulating the Endangered Species Act to ban hunting, fishing and trapping,Ē said Rob Sexton, USSAF vice president for government affairs. ďThe case could set a precedent that affects the future of hunting, fishing and trapping and how they are used as wildlife management tools.Ē



    At issue is the legal argument brought by anti-hunters that trapping of any species should be banned in order to prevent the possibility of inadvertently catching federally protected Canada lynx, bald eagles and gray wolves. There is no data proving this to be a problem.



    ďIt is important for sportsmen to understand this lawsuit represents far more than a strike against a single sport,Ē said Sexton. ďThe trappers wonít be the only ones impacted. If antiís can stop all trapping in a place where there is a risk of catching a Canada lynx, they can just as easily try to stop fishing in bodies of water where there is a risk of catching an endangered species of sturgeon.Ē



    This lawsuit also treads on statesí authority to manage wildlife. An unfavorable decision would virtually require judges to close hunting, fishing and trapping.



    As the case develops, the USSAF continues to defend sportsmenís rights in two nearly identical lawsuits brought by antiís against the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. They also would set dangerous precedents that put hunting, fishing and trapping in jeopardy.



    The USSAF has filed to join the case, along with the Sportsmanís Alliance of Maine, Maine Trappers Association, Fur Takers of America, and individual sportsmen Oscar Cronk, Donald Dudley and Alvin Theriault.



    The U.S. Sportsmenís Legal Defense Fund is the nationís only litigation force that exclusively represents sportsmenís interests in the courts. It defends wildlife management and sportsmenís rights in local, state and federal courts. The U.S. SLDF represents the interests of sportsmen and assists government lawyers who have little or no background in wildlife law.



    The U.S. Sportsmenís Alliance Foundation is a national association of sportsmen and sportsmenís organizations that protects and advances Americaís heritage of hunting, fishing and trapping.

  • #2
    [b]<font color="aa00aa"><font

    <font color="aa00aa"><font size="+2">Maine Takes Steps to Increase Hunter Recruitment-</font></font> &#40;03/26&#41;
    Maine


    Lawmakers in Maine are debating a Families Afield bill that will help bolster the number of hunters in the state.



    Families Afield is a campaign established by the U.S. Sportsmenís Alliance, National Shooting Sports Foundation, and National Wild Turkey Federation to urge states to eliminate unnecessary hunting age restrictions and ease hunter education mandates for first-time hunters.



    Maine HP 370, introduced by Wesley Richardson, R-Warren, will establish a one-year apprentice hunting license for persons 16 years and older. The apprentice will be required to hunt in the presence of a licensed hunter over 18 years. The bill awaits action in the Joint Committee on Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.



    ďMany adults have an interest in hunting, but without trying it, they are not motivated to invest time and money in the activity,Ē said Bud Pidgeon, USSA president. ďAn apprentice hunting experience can be the motivation necessary to bring a newcomer to the field and make sure he or she returns for years to come.Ē



    Last week, the USSA and its partners announced that half of the twelve states that have approved Families Afield legislation and regulations have measured the programís performance and report a significant climb in new hunters. The available data reveals that apprentice hunting license programs brought nearly 34,000 new hunters to the field without a single hunting-related shooting incident.



    ďSafety in the field is always a top priority, and we are proud that the Families Afield program is proving to be safe and effective at boosting sportsmenís numbers, as we were confident it would,Ē said Pidgeon.



    Lawmakers in California, Nebraska, Wisconsin and Oregon are also considering legislation to enact apprentice license programs and lower hunting age restrictions.



    Take Action! Maine sportsmen should contact members of the Joint Committee on Inland Fisheries and Wildlife and ask for support of HP 370. Explain that a ďtry before you buyĒ apprentice hunting program will help bolster the stateís hunter numbers and ensure its hunting traditions.



    Committee members are listed below. Mail comments to: Committee on Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, 100 State House Station, Augusta, ME 04333-0100. For a sample letter to lawmakers, use the Legislative Action Center.



    Sportsmen who want to support the enactment of Families Afield laws and regulations in their states can use the Legislative Action Center on the USSA website, www.ussportsmen.org. The resource allows visitors to find and send messages to their lawmakers regarding Families Afield and other legislative issues.



    Lawmaker Party-Hometown Phone
    Sen. Bruce S. Bryant, Chair
    D-Dixfield
    &#40;207&#41; 562-8872

    Rep. Troy Dale Jackson, Chair
    D-Fort Kent
    &#40;207&#41; 287-1400

    Sen. Joseph C. Perry
    D-Bangor
    &#40;207&#41; 287-1540

    Sen. Walter R. Gooley
    R-Farmington
    &#40;207&#41; 778-2368

    Rep. Mark E. Bryant
    D-Windham
    &#40;207&#41; 892-6591

    Rep. Jane E. Eberle
    D-South Portland
    &#40;207&#41; 287-1400

    Rep. Edward D. Finch
    D-Fairfield
    &#40;207&#41; 287-1400

    Rep. Jacqueline A. Lundeen
    D-Mars Hill
    &#40;207&#41; 429-9434

    Rep. Everett W. McLeod, Sr.
    R-Lee
    &#40;207&#41; 287-1400

    Rep. David E. Richardson
    R-Carmel
    &#40;207&#41; 287-1400

    Rep. Earl E. Richardson
    R-Greenville
    &#40;207&#41; 287-1400

    Rep. Thomas B. Saviello
    U-Wilton
    &#40;207&#41; 287-1400

    Rep. Walter A. Wheeler, Sr.
    D-Kittery
    &#40;207&#41; 287-1400

    Comment


    • #3
      [b]<font color="ff6000"><font

      <font color="ff6000"><font size="+1">Maine Passes Law to Increase Hunter Recruitment
      Families Afield Bill Approved</font></font>


      June 8, 2007 &#40;Maine&#41;



      A Families Afield bill that will help bolster the number of hunters in Maine has been signed into law.

      Families Afield is a campaign established by the U.S. Sportsmenís Alliance, National Shooting Sports Foundation, and National Wild Turkey Federation to urge states to eliminate unnecessary hunting age restrictions and ease hunter education mandates for first-time hunters.

      Gov. John Baldacci signed Maine HP 370 on June 4. The bill, introduced by Wesley Richardson, R-Warren, will establish a one-year apprentice hunting license for persons 16 years and older. The apprentice will be required to hunt in the presence of a licensed hunter over 18 years.

      States that have approved Families Afield legislation and regulations have measured the programís performance and report a significant climb in new hunters. The available data reveals that apprentice hunting license programs brought nearly 34,000 new hunters to the field without a single hunting-related shooting incident.

      Lawmakers in Oklahoma, Oregon, Kansas, Washington and other states have also passed Families Afield legislation this year to enact apprentice hunting license programs and lower hunting age restrictions.

      Comment


      • #4
        Sportsmen Settle Suit, Protect Trapping in Maine

        Sportsmen Settle Suit, Protect Trapping in Maine(Columbus) -

        Sportsmen have reached a legal settlement in a lawsuit that threatened to ban trapping in Maine. The decision will allow trapping to continue in the state.


        On Oct. 4, the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife (DIFW) agreed to restrict trap sizes in areas where Canada lynx exist. The action is part of a settlement between the state and the Animal Protection Institute (API), an anti-trapping organization that filed suit in 2006 to ban trapping. The group argued that all trapping should be prohibited to prevent the inadvertent catch of federally-protected Canada lynx.



        The U.S. Sportsmenís Alliance Foundation joined the case as a defendant intervenor to represent sportsmenís interests. Itís legal arm, the U.S. Sportsmenís Legal Defense Fund, worked along with the Maine Trappers Association, Fur Takers of America, Sportsmanís Alliance of Maine, National Trappers Association and individual sportsmen Oscar Cronk, Donald Dudley, Alvin Theriault and Brian Cogill.



        ďWe will get to continue trapping in Maine with minimal restrictions,Ē said Skip Trask, executive director of the Maine Trappers Association. ďThe attorneys for the U.S. Sportsmenís Alliance Foundation did an outstanding job. Without them, we would have been in serious trouble.Ē



        The DIFW has filed with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) to receive an Incidental Take Permit. The permits are distributed by the FWS for activities that could possibly result in "take" of threatened or endangered species. If the agency grants the permit, the settlement and its restrictions will expire.



        The U.S. Sportsmenís Legal Defense Fund is the nationís only litigation force that exclusively represents sportsmenís interests in the courts. It defends wildlife management and sportsmenís rights in local, state and federal courts. The U.S. SLDF represents the interests of sportsmen and assists government lawyers who often have little or no background in wildlife law.



        The U.S. Sportsmenís Alliance is a national association of sportsmen and sportsmenís organizations that protect the rights of hunters, anglers and trappers in the courts, legislatures, at the ballot, in Congress and through public education programs. For more information about the U.S. Sportsmenís Alliance and its work, call (614) 888-4868 or visit its website, www.ussportsmen.org.
        Saltwater Fishing Articles & More by Outdoor Writer Jerry LaBella
        http://www.jerrylabella.com/forums
        http://jerrylabella.com

        Comment


        • #5
          Sportsmen Settle Suit, Protect Trapping in Maine

          Sportsmen Settle Suit, Protect Trapping in Maine
          Litigious anti's fail at their attempt to ban trapping
          October 5, 2007 (Maine)

          (Columbus) - Sportsmen have reached a legal settlement in a lawsuit that threatened to ban trapping in Maine. The decision will allow trapping to continue in the state.
          On Oct. 4, the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife (DIFW) agreed to restrict trap sizes in areas where Canada lynx exist. The action is part of a settlement between the state and the Animal Protection Institute (API), an anti-trapping organization that filed suit in 2006 to ban trapping. The group argued that all trapping should be prohibited to prevent the inadvertent catch of federally-protected Canada lynx.

          The U.S. Sportsmenís Alliance Foundation joined the case as a defendant intervenor to represent sportsmenís interests. Itís legal arm, the U.S. Sportsmenís Legal Defense Fund, worked along with the Maine Trappers Association, Fur Takers of America, Sportsmanís Alliance of Maine, National Trappers Association and individual sportsmen Oscar Cronk, Donald Dudley, Alvin Theriault and Brian Cogill.

          ďWe will get to continue trapping in Maine with minimal restrictions,Ē said Skip Trask, executive director of the Maine Trappers Association. ďThe attorneys for the U.S. Sportsmenís Alliance Foundation did an outstanding job. Without them, we would have been in serious trouble.Ē

          The DIFW has filed with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) to receive an Incidental Take Permit. The permits are distributed by the FWS for activities that could possibly result in "take" of threatened or endangered species. If the agency grants the permit, the settlement and its restrictions will expire.

          The U.S. Sportsmenís Legal Defense Fund is the nationís only litigation force that exclusively represents sportsmenís interests in the courts. It defends wildlife management and sportsmenís rights in local, state and federal courts. The U.S. SLDF represents the interests of sportsmen and assists government lawyers who often have little or no background in wildlife law.

          The U.S. Sportsmenís Alliance is a national association of sportsmen and sportsmenís organizations that protect the rights of hunters, anglers and trappers in the courts, legislatures, at the ballot, in Congress and through public education programs. For more information about the U.S. Sportsmenís Alliance and its work, call (614) 888-4868 or visit its website, www.ussportsmen.org.
          Saltwater Fishing Articles & More by Outdoor Writer Jerry LaBella
          http://www.jerrylabella.com/forums
          http://jerrylabella.com

          Comment

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