Update on the DNR Funding Bill

Update on the DNR Funding Bill, Sea Grant Workshops and 1st Reminder of the Joint Lake Huron and Lake Michigan Citizens Fishery Advisory Committee

Hi Everyone,

I received another update Friday on the progress of the Governor’s DNR Budget and fee restructuring package.  As I stated before there is continued support from Organizations but some of the Legislators would like to hear more from individuals. 

If you have not already done so, or if you want to encourage your Legislators again, just click the following links for their contact information, SENATOR List and REPRESENTATIVE List.  If the DNR Budget Bill is not approved, it will be next to impossible to move forward on expanding hunting and fishing opportunities in Michigan.  To say the least, that would be devastating for hunters and anglers but also a major blow for expanding the State’s economy.  For your convenience, below are some of the areas that will be implemented if the funding package is approved.
  1. Increasing the rearing and stocking of fish by addressing infrastructure needs at DNR hatcheries
  2. Increasing the acres of public game areas receiving habitat management or maintenance; providing grants to stakeholders for this purpose; increasing the acres of state forest land where wildlife habitat management or maintenance is performed
  3. Providing grants to stakeholders to increase fisheries habitat on inland lakes and streams
  4. Increasing outreach to anglers who fish for perch, bluegill and bass to improve angler retention
  5. Increasing the Pheasant Restoration Initiative focus on public lands throughout southern Michigan
  6. Increasing technical assistance for fisheries habitat improvement on coldwater streams
  7. Increasing creel surveys and assessments on inland lakes and streams
  8. Expanding hunter access opportunity in southern Michigan
  9. Replacing the Great Lakes research vessel Chinook: $2 million one-time General Fund expenditure to replace the 65-year old Great Lakes research vessel
  10. Training and hiring 25 new Conservation Officers
Brandon Schroeder has completed the arrangements for the Sea Grant Lake Huron Spring Workshops and the flyer is attached.  Meetings will be held in the evenings from 6-9 pm at Ubly on Thursday April 18, Oscoda on Wednesday April 24 and Cedarville on Thursday April 25.  Several very interesting items will be discussed including the newly expanded Atlantic salmon program, the final results of the Lake Huron predator diet study, updates on the fisheries and many other pertinent subjects.  The agendas will be finished shortly and I will send them along when they are available.
I want to remind everyone of the Joint Lake Huron and Lake Michigan Citizens Fishery Advisory Committee Meeting to be held on Tuesday April 16, 2013 at the Doherty Hotel in Clare Michigan.  The meeting will start at 10 am and conclude by 3 pm.  Topics covered at the meeting will be of interest to Advisors from both Lakes and include the low water levels and the logistics of dredging the numerous harbors along Lakes Michigan and Huron if funding is approved.  We are planning to have speakers from the Waterways Commission and the U.S. Corps of Engineers.  Other items that will be discussed are how the funds of the hunting and fishing fee restructuring proposal will be spent if the budget is approved by the Legislature, an update on the Chinook salmon stocking reduction in Lake Michigan, an update on the progress of the Atlantic salmon program, updates from the managers and law enforcement and the highlights of the Lake Michigan and Lake Huron presentations at the Upper Great Lakes Committee Meeting to be held in Duluth this week.  Several of us will be attending this meeting and the focus will be native species restoration.
Frank Krist
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Category: MCBA News