Despite the strong tradition of ethics that the vast majority of hunter and anglers abide by, there are those that disregard the laws that regulate hunting and fishing. To address these violations, the Interstate Wildlife Violators Compact (IWVC) was created in 1989 to provide a mechanism to allow state fish and wildlife agencies to share information about fish and wildlife violations between the states. The availability of this information helps stop poachers and other violators from moving their illegal activity to another state after receiving a violation elsewhere.
Earlier in 2013, Vermont became the 39th state to sign on to the Compact, after passing legislation last year. HB 53, sponsored by Representatives Lewis, McAllister, McNeil, and Reis (members of the Vermont Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus), was signed into law by Governors Sportsmen’s Caucus member Governor Peter Shumlin on May 8, 2012.
Several other Northeastern states have advanced IWVC legislation this year – the first step needed towards them joining the Compact in the future:
• Connecticut SB 1020: Introduced by the Joint Committee on Environment (which includes many members of the Connecticut Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus) on February 28, 2013. After passing the Senate on May 28, 2013 and clearing the House on June 5, 2013, SB 1020 was signed into law by Governors Sportsmen’s Caucus member Governor Daniel Malloy on July 11, 2013.
• Delaware SB 117: Passed the Senate on June 18, 2013, passed the House on June 30, 2013, and was signed into law by Governor Jack Markell on July 15, 2013.
• New Hampshire SB 133: Introduced on January 3, 2013 by Senator Jeff Woodburn, Co-Chair of the New Hampshire Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus. SB 133 passed the Senate on March 14, 2013, passed the House on May 22, 2013, and was signed into law by Governor Maggie Hassan on June 28, 2013.
• Rhode Island SB 814: Passed the Senate on June 4, 2013, passed the House on June 26, 2013, and was signed into law by Governor Lincoln Chafee on July 16, 2013.
For additional information on the Interstate Wildlife Violators Compact or sportsmen’s policy issues in the Northeast, contact Brent Miller at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Recently, Virginia has proposed legislation that would make the punishment for poaching, in their state, a 1-5 year prison sentence through HB-449. Poaching undermines the social acceptance of hunters, jobs, recreation, local and state economies, and conservation efforts. How should poachers be punished?Vote Here
- By sentencing them to jail time. (37.25%)
- By giving them a cash fine. (12.75%)
- By banning their hunting and fishing privileges and their ability to buy the necessary licenses. (15.69%)
- By putting them on a probation period. (0.98%)
- There should be some discretion in the penalties depending on the motivations for the poaching incident. (33.33%)