President’s message – George Vandel, Pierre

February 16, 2021

It’s action time!

HB 1140, an act to restrict access by GFP Wildlife Conservation Officers on private land – just passed out of committee (Ag and Natural Resources – comprised of a majority of landowners).  It now heads to the House floor for debate and vote.  It will likely happen soon.

It’s a bad bill supported by the Gov. GFP, various ag organizations and several commercial hunting groups.  It was opposed by the entire conservation community and former GFP Secretaries John Cooper and Jeff Vonk.  I testified on behalf of SDWA in opposition – it passed anyway.

It will change law enforcement on private land creating two types of hunters – those who hunt private land vs those who hunt private land.  It creates a poachers paradise.  It’s bad for hunters, it’s bad for wildlife.

Please contact your 2 House members and strongly urge them to vote no on HB 1140!  If you want help and background, contact sdwfcamo.net for specific suggestions.  Remember, be polite but firm,

Our main issues 1) expanding and increasing quality waterfowl hunting access opportunities in South Dakota 2) maintaining quality waterfowl hunting in our state by balancing nonresident waterfowl hunter numbers such that they not create undue conflicts with resident waterfowl hunters and 3) to ensure that commercialization of waterfowl hunting in South Dakota remains low.

Board: John Simpson – Pierre, Spencer Vaa – Brookings, Tom Yseth – Brookings and Bill Koupal – Pierre.  Bobby Cox will serve as Secretary Treasurer and Chuck Dieter will serve as Past-president.