By John Culclasure, Central Appalachian States Manager
On February 21, the Virginia Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus partnered with the Virginia Sportsmen’s Foundation to host the 28th Annual Wild Game Chili Cook-Off in Richmond.
Approximately 150 people, including more than 30 legislators, attended the non-partisan event held in the Old City Hall where attendees sampled a variety of wild game chili recipes. The event brings together legislators and state officials from both sides of the aisle, provides an opportunity for nonhunters to try wild game, and helps promote Virginia’s outdoor traditions. The Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation was a proud sponsor of the event.
Sheriff Ken Stolle started the event in 1992 in his session apartment when he was a freshman State Senator, and it has grown to one of the most popular events while the General Assembly is in town.
“We continue to put on this event, because it’s one of the rare times when you can get everyone involved in the General Assembly together just for fun. It’s a no-politics zone and frankly is, for many of the attendees, the only time of the year they get to try wild game,” said Virginia Sportsmen’s Foundation President Will Payne.
Virginia’s 1.07 million hunters and anglers spend over $2 billion dollars annually on their pursuits which supports over 39,000 jobs in the state and generates more than $242 million in state and local taxes.
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A key component of the American System of Conservation Funding, the Pittman- Robertson Act directs excise taxes on firearms, ammo, and archery equipment to wildlife conservation. Since its inception in 1937 the Act has generated more than $12 billion towards conservation. However, there has been a loss of 5 million hunters in the past decade. One proposed solution to help fund conservation is to dedicate lottery proceeds for conservation purposes. Would you support this effort in your state?Vote Here
- Yes. (78.26%)
- No, only sportsmen and women should fund conservation. (8.70%)
- No, I support alternative funding mechanisms, but not lottery funds. (8.70%)
- Unsure. (4.35%)