Move to Abolish F&W Advisory Council Draws Fire

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The most controversial of the four proposals I laid before the legislature’s Fish and Wildlife Committee on Thursday, February 28, was LD 128, An Act to Abolish the Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Advisory Council.


The bill drew strong opposition from the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine and the Maine Professional Guides Association, as well as from the Fish and Wildlife Department. I was surprised that only one Advisory Council member attended the hearing and spoke against the bill.

DIF&W Communications Discussed at Legislature

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When I developed eight proposals for the legislature to consider this session, I never dreamed that four would be up for a public hearing on the same day. But that was the case on Thursday, February 28. Four of the five bills heard that day by the Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Committee are mine.

Well, not exactly mine, because I was blessed to win the enthusiastic support of the outstanding  legislators who sponsored my proposals. These are very much their bills now, and it’s been a real pleasure to work with them as the bills were drafted and cast upon the legislative water.

LD 86, sponsored by Senator Anne Haskell, is a Resolve, Directing DIF&W to Amend Its Process of Gathering Public Opinion on Rulemaking and other Projects. Senator Haskell opened the hearing with an excellent presentation. Following that, here’s what I told the committee.

Inn at Bath - A Vacation Destination

City or Town: 
Bath
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Who knew that Bath is a vacation destination?

After years of driving by this thriving community, we stopped for a night at the Inn in Bath where we met others on weekend get-a-ways from Chelsea, Maine to Chicago, Illinois! And because of a storm, this turned into a 3-day visit!

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IFW Committee Acts on Deer, Bear, and Crossbow bills.

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A work session this afternoon by the Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Committee disposed of a bunch of bills, all of which had public hearings last week. Four of the five bills on today’s work session agenda involved giving deer hunting. But the most interesting exchange came on a bear bill. Here’s what happened.

LD 63, sponsored by Rep. Larry Dunphy, would allow “veterans with lower limb loss to obtain any-deer permits.” DIF&W’s Director of Licensing, Bill Swan, answered questions and expressed his support for the bill, with a suggested amendment. The committee unanimously voted the bill “ought-to-pass” with the amendment that would require these veterans to possess a disabled veteran hunting license.

Four of My Bills Up for Thursday Hearings

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When I developed six proposals for the legislature to consider this session, I never dreamed that four would be up for a public hearing on the same day. But that’s the case on Thursday, February 28, when the Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Committee hosts public hearings on five bills. Four are mine.

Well, not exactly mine, because I was blessed to win the enthusiastic support of a group of legislators who sponsored my proposals. These are very much their bills now, and it’s been a real pleasure to work with them as the bills were drafted and cast upon the legislative water.

Here’s the line-up for Thursday’s public hearings that begin at 1 pm in Room 206 of the Cross Office Building in Augusta. If you can’t attend, but have an interest in following the action, you can listen to the hearings online at the legislature’s website.

Bet You Don't Know This About Maine!

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There’s a lot you don’t know about Maine. But you are lucky, because Bill Barry’s new tell-all book about the history of our state will fill your knowledge gap while entertaining and enlightening you. Honestly, I could not put it down.

Maine: the Wilder Half of New England was published in 2012 by Tilbury House in Gardiner, and will be supplying me with background information and topics for my newspaper columns for many years to come.

Maine’s State Historian Earle Shettleworth, Jr., said it better than I can, calling the book, “an accurate, articulate, informative, insightful, and visually attractive account of Maine for the twenty-first century.” Well said Earle!

La Bella Vita and Pies on Parade. Buon Appetitto!

City or Town: 
Rockport
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It was tough – enjoying a spectacular dinner at the Samoset’s La Bella Vita on Saturday night, and finding room to eat our way around Rockland the next afternoon at Pies on Parade.

But we did it!

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