Sportsmen’s Bill Set for Senate Vote

Hunting is big business here in Texas. A fact that Dan Zimmerman now understands, having spent upwards of $350 on the license alone for the Republic. Thankfully, a bill is set for a vote on Thursday to keep the EPA from regulating the crap out of hunting ammunition and fishing gear and therefore raising the price, specifically the lead within said projectiles and sinkers (much to the dismay of some wildlife activists, no doubt). The NSSF has been pushing pretty hard for this legislation, and I’m expecting they’re doing some gloating today…

From the AP:

In its first roll call since September, the Senate voted 92-5 on Tuesday to debate a bill to ease restrictions on hunters and fishermen and allow 41 U.S. hunters to bring home polar bear carcasses trapped in Canada due to a ban on trophy imports.

But polar bears aren’t the only thing in the bill that benefits hunters and shooters in the United States. According to the NSSF, the bill comes with some extra goodies, specifically:

  • The Hunting, Fishing and Recreational Shooting Protection Act: Specifically excludes ammunition and fishing tackle from the Toxic Substances Control Act, preventing unnecessary regulations that could devastate hunting, shooting, conservation funding and the firearm and ammunition industries.
  • Making Public Lands Public: Requires that the 1.5 percent of annual Land and Water Conservation Fund funding is made available to secure public access to federal public land for hunting, fishing, and other recreational purposes.
  • Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act: Makes Pittman-Robertson funds available to states for a longer period of time for the creation and maintenance of shooting ranges. The bill encourages federal land agencies to cooperate with state and local authorities to maintain shooting ranges and limits liability for these agencies.

Some of you may remember (from the last time we discussed it) that the Pittman-Robertson Act is a tax on guns and ammo that benefits hunters, and making those funds more available is definitely a good thing.

Is it the sexiest pro-gun and pro-hunter legislation you’ve ever seen? Probably not. But progress is progress, no matter how small.

UPDATE: The original version of this article stated that the bill had already passed, which was incorrect and based on a report out of North Dakota. After researching further it seems that the bill is simply set for a vote on Thursday, and I have updated the text to reflect that.

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About Nick Leghorn

Nick Leghorn is a gun nerd living and working in San Antonio, Texas. In his free time, he's a competition shooter (USPSA, 3-gun and NRA High Power), aspiring pilot, and enjoys mixing statistics and science with firearms. Now on sale: Getting Started with Firearms by yours truly!

13 Responses to Sportsmen’s Bill Set for Senate Vote

  1. avatarjwm says:

    I don’t hunt but I gladly pay the xtra taxes on my shooting gear to support shooting on public lands. Maybe some day I’ll live in a gun friendly state instead of California and will enjoy using my guns on public lands.

    • avatarsurlycmd says:

      Once you escape, you will find much improvement with your general quality of life.

      • avatarsanchanim says:

        Plans are in the works for my great escape..

        • avatarAvid Reader says:

          I’ll be crossing my fingers for both of you. I’ve turned down job offers in the People’s Republic of Kalifornia, and even though it hurt short term I don’t regret it.

        • avatarJim Scrummy says:

          The best thing that ever happened to me was not getting a position I applied for in Mexifornia. Y’all can keep what you have.

  2. avatarAccur81 says:

    Excellent! It would be great to have more hunting land and shooting ranges. A little competition would greatly improve ranges here. I am specifiaclly referring to a range that has a “shoot for 25 – 30 minutes and check your targets for two minutes” policy. If your target blows over, you’re screwed. I mentioned it to management, and they think they are doing the best thing possible because it is “so hard to clear the line.”

  3. avatarsanchanim says:

    I am all for pro hunter gun legislation. simple really now that I think about it.. lol

  4. avatarJason says:

    While I like the fact that this eliminates a round-about tactic from being used to prevent gun ownership or use, I wish it didn’t have to come to this.

    The fact is that lead is harmful to our natural environment and Hunters and sportsmen should be concerned about its effects. It would be nice if sensible environmental policies could be passed without the threat to manipulation from anti-gunners, but unfortunately we’re stuck with the world we live in.

  5. avatarAverage_Casey says:

    Wow, I can’t believe the senate passed a bill like this.

    • Update: not yet. Set for vote on Thursday.

      Special thank you to a certain North Dakota newspaper for not doing their research. Which I subsequently did and amended the article to reflect.

  6. avatarensitu says:

    Senate to vote on the Federal Land Seizure Act on Thursday

    Senator Jon Tester (D-MT) — who is “F” rated by Gun Owners of America — is pushing a “hunting” bill that authorizes the Obama administration almost unlimited power to seize private lands for “environmental” purposes.

    Anti-gun Majority Leader Harry Reid has scheduled Tester’s bill for a vote, and it will probably take place on Thursday.

    ACTION: It is imperative that gun owners contact their Senators and ask them to OPPOSE S. 3525. Click here to tell them that the modest conservation gains allowed in the bill are totally offset by giving unelected bureaucrats the authority to steal land from hunters and private property owners.

    BACKGROUND

    (1) When the “wetlands” provisions of the Clean Water Act were originally enacted, no one could have foreseen that a landowner would go to prison for applying clean dirt to a junkyard adjacent to a sewer, which was determined to be “wetlands.” But environmentalists have been brilliant in taking seemingly innocuous programs and massively expanding them through fraudulent interpretations or tiny loopholes.

    (2) S. 3525 has “sweeteners.” It allows archery bows to be transported through national parks under very limited circumstances, although Obama could do this by administrative fiat. It also allows, but does not mandate, Pittman-Robertson funds to be used for target ranges. But none of these small discretionary provisions offset the potential damage this does to the rights of individual landowners.

    (3) THE ISSUE OF LOST OPPORTUNITY: If this is the Democrats’ sop to gun owners, it may make it a lot more difficult to secure national concealed carry reciprocity or to stop anti-gun measures and treaties.

    THE CENTRAL PROBLEM WITH S. 3525

    The central problem with the bill is that it allows seizure of private lands for “aquatic habitats” [Sections 201( and 204 (d) (2)]. The definition of this term is limitless and includes seizure of lands in order to “protec[t] the quality and quantity of water sources” and to “serv[e] as a buffer protecting the aquatic environment.” [Section 201 (2)]

    Thus, a factory that “pollutes” can be seized to protect an “aquatic habitat.” The only real limit on seizure in Section 204 is the requirement that the government manage the seized property “in accordance with the purposes of this subtitle.”

    WHO ARE THE DECISION MAKERS?

    The National Fish Habitat Board consists of 27 members. The initial members (Obama appointees) select the remaining members. Thus while the “commercial fishing industry” supposedly has a representative, you can bet that that fisherman is an Obama-supporter and will support his agenda.

    The board then enters into “partnerships” with, inter alia, outside groups. And you can bet that every liberal environmental organization in the country will now be feeding at this pig sty. The outside groups recommend fish habitat programs and plans for seizing private lands.

    Bottom line: This will give immense powers to unelected bureaucrats — a clear violation of the Separation of Powers which our Founders implemented as a way of protecting our rights.

    WHAT ABOUT SECTION 211 (e) (2)?

    This supposedly requires the consent of landowners prior to having their lands seized. But, note the sneaky loophole: Section 211 (e) (2) applies only to property that is being seized with federal funds and, under Section 204 (e), half the funds need to come from non-federal sources.

    So while this section is put forward as a “protection,” it actually doesn’t provide total immunity because the government can take a land owner’s property using non-federal funds — and there is no protection in the bill against that.

    • avatarjkp says:

      Leave it to GOA to angrily complain that the half loaf they received was a little stale and didn’t have sesame seeds.

      That said, I am curious to learn how the federal government can seize land using “non-federal” monies.

    • avatarG23 to 9 says:

      Yeah….do some research, Harry Reid isnt that much of an Antii

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