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This was forwared to me from a fellow hunter and I think it is important for all hunters to respond to it. Please take the time to contact your Senator regarding The Great American Plowout. Here is the info and a sample letter to copy and email to ND Senator Byron Dorgan at [email protected] <[email protected]>

Legislative Alert

Real Estate Consolidation Could Cripple Fish and Wildlife's Easement Program

The Senate Subcommittee on Interior Appropriations is currently considering a proposal that would consolidate the Department of Interior's real estate appraisal functions, including those of the US Fish and Wildlife Service. Delta Waterfowl believes this consolidation would reduce Fish and Wildlife's ability to take easements on some of the most productive breeding habitat on the continent and for that reason encourages members to voice their opposition to the proposal.
According to an impact statement issued by the chief of Fish and Wildlife's Region 6 Division of Realty last July, consolidation of the real estate functions could increase the processing time for grassland and wetland easements by 9 to 12 months, and would reduce by 50 to 80 percent the agency's ability to protect these imperiled habitats.
The International Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (IAFWA) has contacted Interior Secretary Gale Norton asking that appraisals of conservation easements and fee acquisitions valued at less than $5 million remain within the Fish and Wildlife system.
Individuals are asked to contact the chairman of the subcommittee, Sen. Conrad Burns of Montana, and/or Sen. Byron Dorgan of North Dakota to voice their concern over the consolidation. Sen. Burns' office can be reached by sending a fax to 202-228-4532. Sen. Dorgan's fax number is 202-228-2345.
Members also can send an email to any member of the committee by going to www.senate.gov and following the contact instructions.
Members of the subcommittee are Sens. Burns (chairman), Dorgan (ranking member), Ted Stevens (AK), Thad Cochran (MS), Pete Domenici (NM), Robert Bennett (UT), Judd Gregg (NH), Ben Nighthorse Campbell (CO), Sam Brownback (KS), Robert C. Byrd (WV), Patrick Leahy (VT), Ernest Hollings (SC), Harry Reid (NV), Diane Feinstein (CA) and Barbara Mikulski (MD).

Sample Letter

Dear Senator (fill in name),

As a sportsmen, I am concerned that the proposed "reprogramming" of the Department of Interior's real estate functions will hamper the US Fish and Wildlife Service's ability to take easements on native grasslands across the prairie pothole region.

These easements are currently protecting some of the best remaining waterfowl breeding habitat on the continent. Easements also help keep family ranch operations on the land.

For that reason, I encourage you to either oppose the consolidation, or to keep appraisals of conservation easements and fee acquisitions valued at less than $5 million within the Fish and Wildlife system.
 

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Guys, this is a big DEAL. Alot of that private ground you hunt may have an easement...keeping it in grass. This proposal will make it very hard for that to continue.

C'mon Hustad, Fetch, Ken, Dan and the rest of ya get it done and post up so we can encourage others to do so.

If you MN hunters put as much pressure on Dorgan as you did on Pawlenty we could really make some inroads... :)

Regardless of where your from, you need to take the time to study this and contact Sen Dorgan and the other Senators on the press release.

f
 
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