House Natural Resources Committee Passes Legislation To Protect Hunting and Conservation

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Washington, DC – Safari Club International (SCI) thanks the 28 members of the U.S. House Committee on Natural Resources for their bipartisan votes to pass two pieces of legislation:  H.R. 1818, the Polar Bear Conservation and Fairness Act of 2013 and H.R. 2463 the Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act, on July 31st.  Further, SCI respectfully requests that these important pieces of legislation be brought to the House of Representatives for a floor vote soon.

The Polar Bear Conservation and Fairness Act of 2013 allows for the Secretary to authorize permits for importation of legally harvested Polar Bears taken from populations approved for hunting in Canada before the 2008 import ban was enacted by the U.S.  These harvested bears are currently being held in cold storage in Canada because the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS)  has determined that the law prevents it from issuing these once-routine import permits, even though conservation funds of nearly $45,000 will be lost by preventing these imports.

The Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act will amend the Pittman-Robertson Wildlife Restoration Act to facilitate the establishment of additional or expanded public target ranges in certain states.

“These two bills, along with others that are priorities to American Sportsmen and women need to see continued movement,” said SCI President Craig Kauffman.  “H.R. 1818 will make available vital funds for arctic conservation of polar bears and H.R. 2463 promotes our hunting heritage by allowing more Americans exposure to sport shooting activities.  It is imperative that the House advance both bills with a vote, so that the U.S. Senate can adopt this legislation, necessary to preserve the sporting heritage of Americans for years to come.”

The U.S. House of Representatives passed similar legislation in the 112th Congress and Safari Club International remains hopeful to have the current bill move quickly to a floor vote for passage.  Hunters all across America are encouraged to contact their lawmakers and ask them to protect American’s sporting heritage for future generations by supporting both H.R. 1818 and H.R. 2463.

MEDIA CONTACT: Nelson Freeman; nfreeman@safariclub.org

 Safari Club International – First For Hunters is the leader in protecting the freedom to hunt and in promoting wildlife conservation worldwide. SCI’s approximately 200 Chapters represent all 50 of the United States as well as 106 other countries. SCI’s proactive leadership in a host of cooperative wildlife conservation, outdoor education and humanitarian programs, with the SCI Foundation and other conservation groups, research institutions and government agencies, empowers sportsmen to be contributing community members and participants in sound wildlife management and conservation. Visit the home page www.safariclub.org or call (520) 620-1220 for more information.

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