NWTF leadership discusses conservation and politics at SHOT

EDGEFIELD, SC — During the American Wildlife Conservation Partners press conference hosted at the National Shooting Sports Foundation’s annual SHOT Show, NWTF Co-Executive Director Jason Burckhalter praised the AWCP and spoke about the NWTF’s involvement advocating for legislation that benefits America’s natural resources and athletes. women.

Burckhalter said it takes all of our organizations working together to ensure that our future generations experience our natural resources as we do today. Since its founding, he continued, the AWCP has profoundly affected America’s wildlife and wild places.

The AWCP is a consortium of 50 organizations representing the interests of millions of professional hunters, conservationists, and managers of America’s wildlife and natural resources.

Burckhalter noted the significant successes of the AWCP since the 117the Congress, including the unprecedented Bipartisan Infrastructure Act that resulted in the NWTF signing a $50 million 20-year National Master Stewardship Agreement with USDA Forest Serviceme.

He also praised the passage of the MAPLand Act and the REPLANT Act, but said much remains to be accomplished, namely enacting the American Wildlife Recovery Act and establishing a new law that prevents special interest groups from inhibit NWTF conservation delivery on public lands nationally.

Despite a tremendous multi-year collaborative effort by the NWTF, AWCP partners, and the broader sports and conservation community, RAWA’s passage into law never came to fruition, Burckhalter noted.

RAWA would amend the Pittman-Robertson Act to direct a guaranteed allocation of nearly $1.4 billion to states and tribes to restore vulnerable species.

RAWA would supplement existing Pittman-Robertson funding, not replace it, allowing excise tax dollars on firearms, ammunition and archery equipment to remain focused on game conservation, recruitment and access hunters, as well as the development of shooting ranges. In 2021, these taxes generated $1.1 billion for the state’s conservation efforts, maintaining the hunting and hunting community’s status as America’s most hardcore conservation heroes.

NWTF and AWCP partners are also actively working with members of Congress on legislation that would make it more difficult for groups opposed to forest management to misuse the Endangered Species Act, the National Protection Act Environment, the Equal Access to Justice Law and federal law. court system to prevent major forest and range work from being done on federal lands.

The prospective bill, sponsored by Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT), and RAWA are priorities for the NWTF and AWCP as 118the Congress speeds up.

Early involvement of the NWTF and AWCP in planning for the 2023 Farm Bill was also addressed.

The farm bill is one of the largest conservation bills supporting work on federal public lands, as well as voluntary incentive programs for family and private work lands. Through numerous coalitions, the sport conservation community is working to develop priorities for the bill’s conservation and forestry titles to ensure that authorities and funding are available to continue to manage habitat on lands across all boundaries. proprietary.

Burkhalter noted that what we do on our public and private lands over the next decade will be critical to building resiliency in our nation’s forests and other upland ecosystems, ensuring clean water for our communities, providing access for hunters and other enthusiasts of the outdoors, while improving wildlife habitat.

About the National Wild Turkey Federation

Since 1973, the National Wild Turkey Federation has invested more than half a billion dollars in wildlife conservation and has conserved or improved more than 22 million acres of critical wildlife habitat. The organization continues to advance wildlife conservation, forest resiliency, and robust recreational opportunities across the US by working beyond borders at the landscape scale.

2023 is the 50th of the NWTF the anniversary and an opportunity to push the organization’s mission into the future while honoring its rich history. for his 50 the anniversary, the NWTF has set six ambitious goals: positively impact 1 million acres of wildlife habitat; raise $500,000 for wild turkey research; increase membership to 250,000 members; dedicate $1 million to education and outreach programs; raise $5 million to invest in technology and the people of NWTF; and raise $5 million to build a $50 million endowment for the future. Find out how you can help us achieve these lofty goals.