In a blow to New Jersey sportsmen, a state appeals court ruled on Thursday, September 27, against the state’s 2005 bear management plan, which included bear hunting to help control overpopulation. The court ruled that the 2005 plan did not follow several administrative procedures, such as the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) failing to give a public presentation and not responding to questions. Any new plan will need to be approved by DEP Commissioner, Lisa Jackson.
In 2006, Lisa Jackson cancelled the fall bear hunting season when she decided to let politics trump sound wildlife management. The court’s ruling puts any future bear hunting season in jeopardy. Please call Commissioner Lisa Jackson and urge her to reconsider her position on bear hunting as a viable wildlife management tool. Commissioner Jackson can be contacted via phone at (609) 292-2885, via fax at (609) 292-7695, and via mail at Lisa P. Jackson, Commissioner, 401 E. State Street, 7th Floor, East Wing, P. O. Box 402, Trenton, NJ 08625-0402.
Unfortunately, this ruling is not the only example of how hunting activities are being further eroded by anti-hunting organizations and politicians in New Jersey. In June, the Assembly Environment and Solid Waste Committee passed A3275, which would remove sportsmen from the Fish & Game Council and eliminate any reference to use and development of game for public recreation and food supply. The New Jersey legislature is currently in recess; please continue to check www.NRAILA.org for further updates on A3275.