On May 9, members and guests of the Louisiana Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus gathered for a lunch at the historic Pentagon Barracks in Baton Rouge. The event provided an opportunity to introduce new legislators to the National Assembly of Sportsmen’s Caucuses, as well as discuss various topics that impact the Sportsman’s Paradise at both the state and federal level.
Among those topics was the importance of protecting the American System of Conservation Funding (ASCF) and the contributions that Louisiana’s hunters, anglers, boaters, and recreational shooters have made to restoring and maintaining abundant fish and wildlife populations. To celebrate these contributions, Louisiana Caucus Co-Chairs Representative Clay Schexnayder and Senator Francis Thompson recently passed resolutions in each chamber of the legislature commemorating the 80th anniversary of the ASCF. During the event, they presented Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) Senior Midwestern States Director Chris Horton with the resolutions from both the House and Senate.
Since the first year Louisiana received funds from the Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Act in 1937, the state’s hunters, anglers, trappers, boaters, and recreational shooters have contributed over $825 million to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. The Department provides many benefits and services to Louisianans such as conserving wildlife, improving habitat, recruiting new generations of hunters and anglers, and providing access for the public to these resources. In turn, this investment in the state’s natural resources results in a significant contribution to the state’s general economy each year. Louisiana has more than 900,000 hunters and anglers who spend around $1.7 billion annually, supporting 23,000 jobs and providing $165 million in state and local taxes.
Studies conducted at both the state and federal level have found that the number of hunters and trappers have been on a generally declining trend over the past several decades. To increase recruitment, retention, and reactivation (R3) of hunters and trappers, which initiative do you think would have the greatest impact?