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North Dakota

NC Game and Wildlife implementing a number of laws



Bismarck, North Dakota – Our lives are impacted by what happens at the state capitol, and organizations are no different.

Officials from the Game and Fish Department are still keeping track on more than a dozen laws that may have an impact on how they operate.

“Much of what Game and Fish does in terms of how we manage our fish and wildlife resources in the state, is actually established in state law,” said Scott Peterson, North Dakota Game and Fish deputy director.

The halfway of the session, known as a crossover, is when lawmakers have a break.

“We started out tracking Game and Fish bills, those bills that have the most impact on how we do business, and we started out tracking 21 bills. And eight of those bills have now been either withdrawn or failed in their house of origin,” said Peterson.

All bills, according to Peterson, are significant, but some are more so than others.

“First and foremost is our appropriation bill, Senate Bill 2017. And so even though we’re a special fund agency, which means we don’t get any general fund dollars from the legislature, we still need to get spending authority from the legislative body to spend our dollars,” said Peterson.

This session, House Bill 1151, which deals with chronic wasting sickness, has drawn a lot of interest.

“Which essentially would take away our authority to ban hunting over bait for big game. That passed the House and is now going to be headed over to the Senate,” said Peterson.

Also approved by the House, House Bill 1538 will now proceed over to the Senate.

“Which basically deals with how we regulate and monitor and govern fishing tournaments,” said Peterson.

And if you’re interested in following the progress of these bills: “Our website does an excellent job, almost real-time updates on each bill, where it stands and, so, people can log in to to track those in, again, almost real-time,” said Peterson.