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Giant_Jackpot

Time To Move On The 3/16 Initiative

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I posted this in the Political Power forum as well but I think more people look at this forum.

Did you all see the Outdoors Almanac section in the Sunday Paper? If this is not a misprint it looks like Senator Sams has upped the 3/16 initiative to 4/16. Please send your representatives an e-mail and ask them if they are going to support this. If they get enough of us writing they will have no choice but to support it (or we'll vote 'em out!!) I am including a link to the Strib article (scroll down until you see the Permanent Funding heading) and a link the Minnesota district finder web site. The District Finder will allow you to easily find out who your reps are and how to contact them. It's easy to do and only and only takes a few minutes to send a quick e-mail.

http://maps.commissions.leg.state.mn.us/HSOforum/districts/
http://www.startribune.com/stories/531/4350001.html

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<bump>

I sure hope some people are taking a few minutes to send notes to your legilatures on this.
If you enjoy hunting or fishing, you need to act on this. It WILL make a difference.

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I have not been watching or reading the news lately, what is the 3/16 issue.

O

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I agree that stands should be removed as fish houses do each year, this would stop cabins in the sky. How about a stand Permit like a Portable permit? this could also raise some money. Angelers get taxed enough each year, through license's stamps and boat/house license's. Considering that some residents don't hunt or fish, is it fair for them to pay for someone else's sport? There is many ways to raise money such as through increased fines for those who break the law.

------------------
en kala
(I fish)

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My understanding from the first time the 3/16 bill went around is that the money is not soley for hunting and fishing, but for wildlife in general. Examples would include non-game wildlife (similar to the "chickadee checkoff" on the state tax form), state parks and state forests, maybe some city parks and trails, etc. It was a source of money dedicated to wildlife and outdoors, including hunting and fishing, but not limited only to hunting and fishing.

Also, if I remember correctly, the 3/16 money would replace some specific funds now allocated to the outdoors, such as maybe the state lottery money or something like that. That's one of the reasons the DNR has had to make such drastic cuts - through the state budgeting process they find out that they are going to be given much less money to run their department. Having a consistent and dedicated source of funds, such as 3/16, would provide some stability and limit cuts to these programs. The money currently given to these programs and departments would be used elsewhere (maybe not even wildlife or outdoors related). Personally I think it's a great idea.

[This message has been edited by PerchJerker (edited 02-02-2004).]

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I recieved this as an email:

quote:

Dennis Anderson, Star Tribune

Published January, 30 2004

ANDY30

On Tuesday, while Gov. Tim Pawlenty was promoting a constitutional

amendment to reinstate the death penalty in Minnesota, leaders of various

hunting and angling groups were planning a press conference to promote a

constitutional amendment of their own.

Rather than execute the "worst of the worst" criminals, as the Pawlenty

constitutional amendment would do, the amendment promoted by the hunters

and anglers would execute a plan in Minnesota to vastly improve natural

resource conservation.

The surprise Tuesday was that the governor didn't promote the sportsmen's

proposed amendment in addition to the death penalty amendment -- given that

Pawlenty, before being elected, was among its chief advocates.

Said Pawlenty on Nov. 3, 2002:

"I have been a strong supporter of the idea of dedicated, long-term funding

for natural resources. . . . To get the [constitutional] amendment proposal

on the ballot we will have to demonstrate to Minnesotans that we have the

reforms in place to achieve the desired outcomes.

"My position is that I support the dedication of 3/16s of 1 percent of the

state sales tax from existing resources. . . . I am saying we would take

the 3/16s from the current sales tax.

"But whatever the exact details of the amendment the state's voters might

approve, it's not a violation of my pledge [not to raise taxes] if the

people of Minnesota decide to dedicate this money in a referendum.

"The Legislature has the ability to put such a proposal on the ballot. A

governor can't veto it."

This last is an important point. In theory, governors play only minor roles

in developing Minnesota constitutional amendment proposals. It is the

Legislature's obligation alone to approve such plans for placement on the

statewide ballot.

Still, a governor's support in encouraging passage of a constitutional

amendment proposal by the Legislature is important, if not crucial.

Which is why Pawlenty is pushing early for serious consideration by the

Legislature of the death penalty amendment.

Passage of such proposals is extremely rare, and passage this session of

two would be rarer still.

So it is that leaders of hunting and angling groups, aided in part by

former Sen. Bob Lessard of International Falls, are hoping their press

conference a week from today at the Capitol gives their idea a boost.

Some background:

The apportionment of 3/16s of 1 percent of the state sales tax is an idea

lifted from Missouri, where a similar sales-tax dedication underwrites what

is generally considered to be the nation's best conservation department.

Dedicated funding -- while not the sole answer to Minnesota's considerable

conservation problems -- is important for many reasons, among them:

? Without it, long-term conservation planning is futile.

? Without it, the DNR (or whatever a reconfigured conservation department

would be called) is forever at the mercy of the governor and the

Legislature, neither of which, historically in Minnesota, have

sufficiently funded or supported conservation.

? Without it, Minnesota soil and water will continue to be degraded, and

with them the state's quality of life. At particular risk in coming years

will be the state's aquifers and the drinking water they provide.

Next Friday's press conference (with its still unannounced, but promised,

slate of celebrities) is intended to breathe life into the 3/16s idea for

the coming legislative session.

But important to gaining support among legislators and, ultimately, the

governor is development of a plan to spend the money. Such a plan should be

part of a larger vision detailing what we, as citizens, want Minnesota to

look like in, say, 2020 and even 2050.

The reason: Understanding the additional pressures that agriculture,

development and more people will place on the state's resources in coming

years is a first step in determining how best to develop a conservation

program for tomorrow and beyond.

Passage of the dedicated sales-tax idea also implies retooling the state's

conservation delivery system. By this I mean primarily the DNR but, more

broadly, also other state and federal agencies, as well as conservation and

environmental groups. The goal would be to increase the likelihood that

(assuming an influx of new money) desired outcomes will occur.

Complex undertakings, yes, but doable.

First, however, comes the press conference next Friday to promote the

dedicated sales-tax idea.

Following, it is hoped, will be renewed support by the governor.

Then, finally, the hard work of moving the proposed constitutional

amendment through the Legislature.


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Hopefully, this will go through.

[This message has been edited by MT Net (edited 02-03-2004).]

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MT,

Thanks for putting in the additional info.

To everyone else reading this post:

I would like to make it clear that if this is going to move forward WE all need to send a note to our representatives asking them to support it. We can’t just wait for one news conference and hope it just goes from there. I was at a meeting of the Minnesota Game and Fish Coalition a couple of years ago when Mark Holston (then a Senator now the DNR Deputy Commissioner) told us it does not take that many letters to make a difference. If you go to the Game and Fish Coalition web site they have suggestions on how to write a letter. I know just about everyone that visits this great web site does really care about our natural resources. I would like to suggest that if you have the time to be reading these posts and making posts of your own, that you do actually have the time to write to your representatives. It really does take just a few minutes and it can make a difference. Here is the link to the District Finder so you can easily find out who your rep is.

http://maps.commissions.leg.state.mn.us/HSOforum/districts/

Please, please, please, please take a few minutes to do this!!!!!

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Come on folks, I know you are looking at this post. Send a note to your reps and then let us know what they say. I have not heard back from mine yet but with the session just getting under way I will cut them some slack.

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I sent a query to both of my representatives for Senate and House. Dick Day - Senate Republican leader and Connie Ruth. I have received no reply from Connie Ruth.

Here is the reply I received from Senate Republican leader Dick Day after I told him about the plan to introduce the 4/16s bill.

Rick:
So it is basically the same plan as past years, only it's 1/16th of 1 percent more.

I will certainly support this bill. Doesn't matter to me who introduces the bill as long as we get it passed!

Thanks,

Dick Day

This is an edited version but does tell Dick's position accurately.

Everyone be sure to use the links above to contact your reps and let them know your position and ask for theirs.

[This message has been edited by Rick (edited 02-03-2004).]

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I just sent a email off to my state rep and senator. It was easy also, I hope more people get on board with this.

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I just sent my emails off. Only took a few minutes. Whoever posted the link to help me find my representatives, Thank You. That’s a great tool.

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My emails are sent. I'll post any response I get.

Thanks for all the info. It feels good to get involved!!

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Hey! Thanks for helping to get the word out. Tell your friends and co-workers to do the same. As you found out, it is easy and quick.

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The state senator who represents my district (first ring of the western metro) wrote me back. He told me that he will not be supporting this initiative. His logic went along the line that we do not use dedicated funding for other things (he used schools as an example) so we should not use it for this purpose. While I disagree with him and will probably not vote for him the next time he comes up for election because of this, I can see his side of things as well. I see this as a small price to pay for something that will benefit so many.

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Let him know you won't be supporting him on his next election campaign.

Great to see some movement here. Lets keep going.
I have one reply supporting the bill, and no reply from the other. I gave him a little reminder email today, that I want to know his stance.

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BigLake,

I made sure he knows how I feel about this. Before he replied he knew I wouldn't vote for him if he votes against this.

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Bumping this one up to the top.
Sorry, but its necessary.

If we can have 10+ pages for naming a cartoon, I would hope we could get 10+ pages for some actions on this.

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Sent my emails as well, hopefully the response will be positive. With all of the money that is spent in this state on hunting and fishing by residents and non-residents, it is high time we get something back on paper that goes back to our resources!!!

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