Letters From the West

Senate panel sends wolf control bill to be amended

The Idaho Senate Resources and Environment Committee sent a bill that would create an Idaho Wolf Control Board to the amending order Friday.

The bill needs to be changed to meet the state’s Constitution said sponsor Sen. Bert Brackett, a Rogerson Republican. Approval would push the state over the limit for state agencies so Brackett recommended it be rewritten to be under the governor’s office.

The board would collect money from livestock owners and from hunting and fishing license fees to fund wolf control measures, in light of federal budget cuts.

Brackett also told the committee the sportsmen dollars that go into the fund could be used for non-lethal preventive measures pushed by wolf advocates.

The $2 million Idaho Gov. Butch Otter proposed to come from tax dollars is expected to be cut down to $400,000.

Rocky Barker is the energy and environment reporter for the Idaho Statesman and has been writing about the West since 1985. He is the author of Scorched Earth How the Fires of Yellowstone Changed America and co-producer of the movie Firestorm: Last Stand at Yellowstone, which was inspired by the book and broadcast on A&E Network. He also co-authored the Flyfisher's Guide to Idaho and the Wingshooter's Guide to Idaho with Ken Retallic. He also was on the Statesman’s team that covered the Sen. Larry Craig sex scandal, which was one of three Pulitzer Prize finalists in breaking news in 2007. The National Wildlife Federation awarded him its Conservation Achievement Award.

Posted in Letters from the West