H.R. 2834, introduced by Rep. Dan Benishek (R-Mich.) recognizes the rightful place of hunting, fishing and recreational shooting on Federal lands and supports Executive Order 13443 that directs all Federal agencies to facilitate the expansion and enhancement of hunting on our public lands.
H.R. 2834 establishes an “open unless closed” policy for hunting, fishing and recreational shooting on lands managed by the US Forest Service (USFS) and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).
H.R. 2834 would protect hunter access to federal lands by ensuring a proactive management of recreational uses of those lands and prevent the sudden closure of lands without public knowledge or input or when lacking sound scientific support.
H.R. 2834 would also reverse a recent court ruling that interferes with the authority of the US Fish and Wildlife Service to open wildlife refuges to hunting. The bill eliminates unnecessary and costly environmental analyses of hunt programs imposed upon the Service by a court ruling in a lawsuit brought by anti-hunters.
H.R. 2834 would require that hunting, fishing and recreational shooting be addressed in management plans that are developed for Federal lands. This requirement will prevent these activities from being treated in a discriminatory or prejudicial manner.
H.R. 2834 allows the USFS and BLM to lease or designate lands for recreational shooting.
The NRA strongly supports language in H.R. 2834 that ensures that the designation of USFS and BLM wilderness, wilderness study areas, primitive and semi-primitive areas cannot be used to preclude hunting, fishing and shooting.