Most Natural Resources are Outside Indianapolis …

INCA needs member support across the state as well.
To strengthen our “unified voice advocating for public funding for land, water, and wildlife“, the INCA is hosting a series of regional grassroots meetings to identify and engage conservation-minded citizens in the effort to secure meaningful public funding for conservation.  
 
At these meetings, we will share information about INCA and provide a brief history of our conservation funding advocacy and the results.  Most importantly, we want to talk to people locally to hear what is important to them to protect, what their communities are doing and how state programs might be useful.  We want to find out how much people are or aren’t communicating with their legislators.  If they’re not, how can we assist?   If they are, we want to support and encourage them to continue and will do our best to provide them pertinent information or provide assistance as needed.
 
As you know we are in an era of reducing government, but as a former legislator told us, “priorities get funded in good times and priorities get funded in bad times.”  We want to grow our influence with members of the general assembly – both in their districts and at the statehouse –to make conservation funding a statewide priority.     
 
The meetings will be held in:
 
Southeast Indiana
Date:  Tuesday, August 26th
6 pm to 8 pm (EDT)
 
Location:  Batesville Memorial Public Library
131 N. Walnut Street
Batesville, IN

Southern Indiana
New Albany/Jeffersonville/Clarksville area
Date:   September 11, 6 to 8 p.m.
 
Location: Pineview Government Center
2524 Corydon Pike
Rm. 102
New Albany, IN  47150
 

Northern Indiana

South Bend/Elkhart area 
Date and location to be announced
 
For more information about a specific regional meeting, contact:
 
for North meeting:  Holly Jones, hollysinthegarden@gmail.com, 317-517-9180
 
for South meeting:  Lynn Dennis, ldennis@tnc.org, 317-829-3810
 
for Southeast meeting: Tim Maloney, tmaloney@hecweb.org, 812-369-8677
 
 

Button, button, who’s got the button …

Senate Bill 404, “canned hunting” failed to pass by one vote to move to the House of Representatives for consideration.  However that does not mean the subject is  “dead” for this session. The language, that was Senate Bill 404, may indeed pass on, similar to the “button” in the children’s game. It can arise again as an amendment to another bill that has passed one chamber of the Legislature and is under consideration by the other chamber, either in the House or Senate.

A possibility exists that the “canned hunting button” may appear as an amendment in Senate Bill 52, Criminal Penalties & DNR. (As long as the topic of the amendment is sort of close to the original subject, it passes parliamentary muster.)  Last year a similar “canned hunting” bill, SB 487  Shooting and Hunting Preserves, was passed by the Senate and the House, but didn’t make it out of Conference Committee. If “canned hunting” is amended into Senate Bill 52, you can get an idea of your Representatives position on it from his/her vote last year (click here).

Senate Bill 52 is assigned to the Corrections and Criminal Law committee in the House.

On the other hand, the “canned hunting button” may be amended into HB 1307  Various Natural Resource Matters, which passed in the House of Representatives and is being considered by the Senate now. It is assigned to the Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee who passed the original SB 404 out of committee only to have it fall one vote short of passage in the full Senate – two Senators were absent for the vote. (The amended bill would have to go to Conference Committee and if approved by that committee then be voted on by each chamber for final passage.)

In addition to the obvious ethical issues involved in “canned hunting” there is great risk of introducing Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) into Indiana’s natural deer population. Once introduced CWD cannot be contained or eliminated. Unlike the Emerald Ash Borer and Asian Carp the principle vector for CWD disease is the Interstate Highway system and the farms that raise captive deer.

Senator Yoder passes on 2nd Reading of Canned Hunting Bill

Today, SB 404 was up for 2nd reading which included the opportunity to amend and to engross (put the bill in final form) and to move the bill to 3rd reading and final vote.

The process will repeat itself on Monday, the final day for 2nd reading.  There is still time to contact your Senator and express your views. SB 404 will come up again on 2nd reading to see if it progresses. The Senate calendar hopes to finish all bills (3rd reading) on Tuesday.

The introduction in Indiana of Chronic Wasting Disease is thought to have come from Pennsylvania (over the interstate highway in a truck). Click here to see why this disease is so difficult to track in the video on our Fact Sheet page.

INCA member Indiana Wildlife Federation shares the following on their website.

Canned Hunting bill SB404 passed the Senate Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee with a vote of 6-1.

Update on SB404 – The bill passed the Senate Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee with a vote of 6-1.  We thank Sen. Tim Skinner of Terre Haute for taking a stand for wildlife and voting no.  The bill was amended to add a few features that would help reduce the likelihood of captive deer escaping.  That said, this is still a bad bill no matter how you look at it.  The major concerns fall into two categories:  1. Health of the wild deer herd, and 2. Fair chase and hunting ethics.   While the opposition may propose things like double fencing to keep wild deer and captive deer from interacting, there’s no way to dress this up to be fair chase hunting.

Action that you, your friends, family, and affiliate members can take to speak up for wildlifeand stop legalization of high fence shooting/canned hunting:

  1. Contact the people who have the power to address this and make the right decision that canned hunting is not good business for Indiana:
    • Gov. Mike Pence:  317-232-4567
    • Sen. David Long, Senate President Pro Tempore: 317-232-9416, Senator.Long@iga.in.gov
    • Speaker of the House, Brian Bosma:  317-232-9657, h88@iga.in.gov

2. Sign the on line petition to oppose canned hunting in Indiana: http://www.change.org/petitions/ban-canned-hunting-in-indiana

January 28th Editorials from the Journal Gazette:

http://www.journalgazette.net/article/20140128/EDIT07/301289995/1021/edit

http://www.journalgazette.net/article/20140128/EDIT07/301289984/1021/edit

10th Annual INCA Conservation Day a Success

Yesterday’s Conservation Day at the Statehouse, despite the bitter cold which closed Indianapolis’ City Government Offices, saw most of the 90 people registered and INCA organizations attend. 2013 Legislator of the Year awards were given to Senator Long and Representative Karickhoff and former Lt. Governor Becky Skillman updated the group on the Bi-Centennial Trust. 

We are nearing the halfway point of this fast moving session and there are still bills and resolutions in play that affect Indiana’s conservation future – stay tuned. In addition to this website you can also follow us on Twitter @INConservation.

INCA Recommends Caution Tomorrow if you Travel to Indianapolis

The City of Indianapolis has announced its offices will be closed Tuesday, except for essential services. The State has not made such an announcement, nor has the General Assembly, which is a separate branch and thus would make any announcement about their status.  At this point we believe it is unlikely the legislature will be closed.  Well over half of the members stay in Indianapolis during the week.

We caution you to use your own judgment and do not feel pressured to come to Conservation Day if you are concerned about the commute.

We will still post cancellation if we find out that the Legislature or Statehouse indeed is closed.