By Brett Stayton, Mid-Atlantic States Coordinator
On June 19, the Pennsylvania Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus hosted their Annual Cigar Reception at Sawyer’s on Second Street in downtown Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
Traditionally the largest annual caucus event with upwards of 60 members of the bipartisan and bicameral caucus were in attendance, including Co-Chairs Representatives Eddie Day Pashinski and Ryan Warner, and Senators Pat Stefano and Jim Brewster. Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) Mid-Atlantic Coordinator Brett Stayton and Senior Director of Northeastern States Brent Miller were also in attendance.
“Thanks to the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation, our sponsors and the hard work of multiple individuals, we were able to put on a tremendously successful event and bring together legislators and stakeholders to discuss issues important to sportsmen,” said Rep. Pashinski. “In an effort to continue last night’s success, I look forward to working with my fellow legislators and the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation to put together a wide range of engaging events in the future.”
Rep. Ryan Warner echoed his colleagues sentiments, “I would like to thank all of our sponsors and the efforts of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation that made this event possible. Pennsylvania has the second largest population of hunters in the United States, so it is very much an honor to showcase the resources and opportunities that we provide sportsmen throughout our commonwealth. I look forward to continuing to work with the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation to promote and preserve those opportunities to our next generation of sportsmen.”
Attendees at the event were engaged on a discussion of pertinent policy issues affecting the state such as Sunday Hunting, Chronic Wasting Disease, the 2018 Farm Bill reauthorization, and State Agency Authority to Set License, Permit fees, while also enjoying a night of comradery, cigars, and beautiful weather.
In addition to the high legislator turnout, Bryan Burhans, Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Game Commission was also in attendance as were several other staff members from the both the Game Commission and the Fish and Boat Commission.
The event also brought together conservation partners from around the Keystone State including leaders from Hunters Sharing the Harvest, Ducks Unlimited, Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, Safari Club International, The Keystone Elk Country Alliance, Hunters United for Sunday Hunting, and the National Rifle Association. The events sponsors also included Alta Resources, Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation, Chief Oil and Gas, Kline Associates, Range Resources, Reynolds American, Seneca Resources, UGI Energy Services, and Williams Partners.
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- Improve hunter and target shooter involvement in regulatory and legislative processes. (11.67%)
- 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). (11.67%)
- Offer shooting sports and hunter education as school activities and recreation programs. (65.00%)
- Link existing programming into family-oriented organizations (such as churches and home-school groups) where participants will have the social support to continue. (11.67%)