Category Archives: Legislative Topics
The ORTWS legislative affairs committee and the conservation affairs committee have been busy in 2017. For more information on what legislative and conservation issues ORTWS has been involved with and to read comment letters visit our policy page!
The Oregon House of Legislators has just passed SB644. This bill would allow counties to approve mining permits on exclusive farm use zoned land, without needing to abide by state land use planning goals or administrative rules. This legislation raises concerns for conservation planning, because although allowances are made for sage-grouse conservation, there are a wide variety of other species that use these habitats. No provisions for consideration of impacts to other species conservation requirements are made within SB644. Resource management biologists worked diligently throughout the state to scientifically classify and delineate these essential protection areas. There are thousands of such acres adjacent to and near rural communities that provide vital deer and elk winter range, native bird shrub and grassland habitats, waterfowl wetlands, and stream habitats for aquatic species that would be susceptible to damage or elimination under the provisions of this bill.
Please take a minute to write the governor to share your perspectives on the potential impacts of changing land use planning requirements on wildlife resources. Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org with the governor’s office.
Thank you for your time and effort with these very important legislative issues.
The change in policy ties directly into engaging non-consumptive users in ownership of the wildlife management agencies and clarifies ODFW’s role for staff, managers, elected officials and the public. Read ORTWS’ testimony in support of HB3228 here.
Recovering America’s Wildlife Act (H.R. 5650 would dedicate $1.3 billon to state conservation programs
Following the recent recommendations of the Blue Ribbon Panel on Sustaining America’s Diverse Fish and Wildlife Resources, Congressman Don Young (R-AL) and Congresswomen Debbie Dingell (D-MI) have introduced the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act (H.R. 5650) in the House of Representatives on July 6.
If passed, the legislation would dedicate $1.3 billion in federal funds annually to state conservation programs – a development holding significant promise for funding ODFW and the Oregon Conservation Strategy.