Mid-March grab bag: Oppose the GROW Act, plus it’s outdoors awards season

(Photo by Rob Drieslein)

Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever issued an alert to their members this week urging them to oppose U.S. Senate Bill 2557 – the “GROW Act.”

The major rub with the “Give our Resources the Opportunity to Work” legislation is a provision that would cap the Conservation Reserve Program at 24 million acres. For more than a year, outdoors groups have been advocating for a 2018 Farm Bill that contains a robust CRP of 40 million acres. This bill caps it at an unacceptably low number.

In a release, PF said the bill will “drastically impact CRP, upland wildlife, and your ability to find quality places to hunt. It’s bad news for you as a hunter and wildlife advocate.”

For more information about the lousy legislation, PF has a thorough webpage here.

Four members of the Senate Agriculture Committee introduced the bill last week in Washington D.C. They include Iowa GOP senators Joni Ernst and Chuck Grassley, and two Democrats, Sherrod Brown, of Ohio, and Bob Casey, of Pennsylvania. PF/QF is encouraging members and any citizens concerned about the future of CRP to contact the authors or their own senator to oppose the GROW Act. You can contact them via this link.

  • Congrats to the three individuals and two organizations that the Fishing Hall of Fame of Minnesota will enshrine for 2018 this Friday, March 23. Inductees in the Hall’s Individual Legends category include outdoor writer, photographer, and filmmaker Mark Strand; one of North America’s most recognizable faces and voices in fishing today, Director of Field Promotions for Rapala USA, Mark Fisher; plus legendary Rainy Lake guide, Billy Dougherty. The Gapen Company and MinnKota will join the ranks of Legendary Organizations. Joe Fellegy wrote about Dan Gapen on Page 12 of this week’s print edition of Outdoor News. Pick up a free copy at our booth at the Northwest Sportshow, which starts tomorrow (Thursday, March 22) at the Minneapolis Convention Center. Then watch for photos and complete details of the Hall of Fame induction in next week’s print edition of Outdoor News.
  • Remember that the Rally for Minnesota Public Lands at the State Capitol is just over a month away. David Lien has a good piece in the Duluth News Tribune defending public lands and making the case for the rally, which you can read here.
  • Finally, congratulations to the 20th recipient of the Outdoor News Person of the Year Award, Arlen Schamber of Austin, Minn. Tim Spielman wrote a fascinating profile of the man and his family on Page 38 of this week’s print edition of Outdoor News. The staff here thoroughly enjoyed meeting this lifetime conservationist and his family when they visited our offices a couple weeks back. Hard to believe it’s been nearly two decades since Outdoor News created the award and gave its inaugural version to Joe Duggan following the passage of the Right to Hunt and Fish Amendment in 1998. Looking forward to announcing recipients for decades to come!

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