WYOGA News & Updates - August 2020

The 2020 Wyoming Outdoors is coming along. If you are interested in advertising, please let the office know. There are a few spots left. Timeline for publication:

September 1st: Bios are due

October 1st: Reserve ad space

November 1st: Ad material and payment due 

Thank you for your continued support for this project.

TRW meet in Thermopolis on July 16-17. They received an update from the Game and Fish, but the majority of the meeting was focused on the impacts of COVID-19. WYOGA successfully advocated for a business liability protection bill that was drafted by the travel and tourism industry and business coalitions. The bill will be a committee bill in either a special session held by the Legislature in late August or early September or the General Session in 2021.

On a parallel track, the Joint Judiciary Committee will meet on August 20-21, to discuss liability protection. They are taking public comment electronically through this link, Public Comment Form, until August 19, at 5:00 PM. Please take the time to share your concerns about this critical issue and the need for added protections for the industry. It only takes a few minutes and will be imperative that the voice of Outfitters and Guides is heard by this committee.

We are closely monitoring several key primary elections in the legislature. Numerous anti-outfitting candidates are on the ballot as well as some of our allies are facing primary challenges. Look for a full update following Tuesday’s election.

TRW will meet on September 24-25 in Sundance.

Thank you!
Bill Novotny, WYOGA Lobbyist

The 2020 Annual Winter Retreat is presently scheduled for:

December 11-12, 2020
Ramkota Hotel
Casper, WY

 Invitations with a tentative agenda will be mailed November 1st.  We will hold Election of Officer’s on Saturday, December 12th during the general membership meeting. Mark your calendar and plan to attend.

The non-resident elk application The Wyoming Outfitters and Guides Association (WYOGA), Jackson Hole Outfitters and Guides Association (JHOGA), Sublette County Outfitters and Guides Association (SCOGA) and Safari Club International (SCI) jointly intervened in a case in which anti-hunting groups are challenging the U.S. Forest Service’s (Service) approval of supplemental winter feeding of elk on National Forest System lands in Wyoming.  

The federal district court in Wyoming granted the Hunting Coalition’s motion to intervene, despite the anti-hunting groups’ request that the Coalition’s participation be limited.  

The petitioners—including Sierra Club and Western Watersheds Project—want the Service to stop the winter supplemental feeding.  Animal rights groups have sued to stop the feeding several times before, alleging that the concentration of elk on feed grounds increases the risk of disease transmission, including a recent concern that supplemental winter feeding would increase the risk of Chronic Wasting Disease transmission.  In a different, ongoing case, the Coalition (except SCOGA) intervened to defend supplemental elk feeding authorized by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on the National Elk Refuge.

Feeding on National Forest System lands and state feed grounds has occurred for more than 100 years.  Without the supplemental feeding, many elk would starve. 

The intervention of WYOGA, JHOGA, SCOGA and SCI is step-one in the litigation process.  Parties will eventually file briefs and likely participate in a hearing to resolve the merits of the case. 

Wyoming’s elk herds provide high-quality hunting opportunities for hunters, and outfitters in Wyoming depend on those hunts for their clients.  

WYOGA, JHOGA, and SCOGA are represented by attorneys from the Falen Law Offices, LLC.  SCI is represented by in-house counsel.

2020 Primary Election
Tuesday, August 18th. Candidate that will support the outfitting industry: 
Robert Short for US Senate

Copyright © 2020 Wyoming Outfitters & Guides Association, All rights reserved.

Contact us for more information:
Wyoming Outfitters & Guides Association
P.O. Box 2650, Casper, WY 82602

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