March 24, 2016

Vermont: Sportsmen’s Caucus Reception and Shoot

On March 10, the Vermont Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus (Caucus) hosted its annual Caucus Reception and Fundraiser at the State House in Montpelier, Vermont. More than 55 Caucus members were joined by Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife staff, leaders and members of national and in-state conservation organizations, and Governors Sportsmen’s Caucus (GSC) Vice-Chair and Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin to celebrate the state’s hunting and angling traditions and to discuss the critical issues facing the sportsmen’s community in the Green Mountain State.

The evening featured remarks by Caucus Co-Chair and National Assembly of Sportsmen’s Caucuses Executive Council member Rep. Patrick Brennan; Governor Shumlin; Caucus Co-Chair Sen. John Rodgers; Commissioner of the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department (VTFW) Commissioner, Louis Porter; Chief of the Law Enforcement Division of VTFW, Colonel Jason Batchelder; Chief of the Wildlife Division of VTFW, Mark Scott; American Suppressor Association (ASA) President, Knox Williams; and Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) Northeastern States Director, Brent Miller.

A day prior to the event, the ASA hosted a suppressor demonstration for members of the Vermont Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus, Wardens of the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department, and local law enforcement to educate them on the realities of suppressor technology. The demonstration came on the heels of the successful passage of House Bill 5 last year which included language championed by Caucus Co-Chair Rep. Brennan to legalize suppressor ownership in the state. CSF continues to work alongside the ASA to educate Caucus members on the benefits of suppressors and remains optimistic that the sunset provision included in last year’s bill will be repealed this legislative session. 

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?

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