Contact: Nick Buggia, Upper Midwestern States Manager
On May 8, the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) joined the Illinois Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus to host the annual Illinois Caucus Reception and Fundraiser.
This event brought together state legislators and members of the Illinois hunting and angling community to discuss policy priorities in the state and across the Midwestern region. The funds raised provide a resource for members of the Illinois Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus to sponsor local youth outdoor activities, such as high school bass fishing clubs and high school shooting teams.
Caucus Co-Chair Representative Larry Walsh assisted with organizing the event and provided the opening remarks to welcome attendees.
“Illinois is home to 1.3 million hunters and anglers who contributed more than $64 million to conservation in 2018,” said Rep. Walsh. “I’m proud to report that the Illinois Sportsmen’s Caucus remains strong and is committed to good policies that protect and enhance our outdoor traditions.”
One pro-sportsmen’s bill, HB 3623, sponsored by former Caucus Co-Chair Representative Jerry Costello, would expand apprentice hunting opportunities in the state. The bill unanimously passed the House and is currently being considered on the Illinois Senate floor.
The newly appointed director of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources Colleen Callahan also addressed attendees.
Through the American System of Conservation Funding, Illinois sportsmen and women provided over $64 million for conserving Illinois’s abundant fish and wildlife in 2018.
Title Sponsors included Ameren; Bass Pro Shops; and Cabela’s Outdoor Fund. Host Sponsors included: Hornady Manufacturing, Inc.; National Shooting Sports Foundation; Plano Synergy Holdings; Richard Childress Racing; Safari Club International; Shimano American Corporation; and Vista Outdoor Inc. Co-Host Sponsors included: Chicagoland Operators Joint Labor Management PAC; Comcast Corporation; ComEd; Exelon; Illinois Pipe Trades Association; and Peoples Gas & North Shore Gas. Supporting Sponsors included: AT&T; Foresight Energy; and Illinois State Council of Operating Engineers.
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- Improve hunter and target shooter involvement in regulatory and legislative processes. (13.89%)
- Enact or expand temporary hunter education deferral programs (apprentice license programs, multiyear options, programs for all first-time hunters regardless of age, and programs promoting hunting of multiple game species). (12.50%)
- Offer shooting sports and hunter education as school activities and recreation programs. (59.72%)
- Link existing programming into family-oriented organizations (such as churches and home-school groups) where participants will have the social support to continue. (13.89%)