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Alright, time for the ignorant question of the week! And since I'm feeling inspired to think change is at least a possibility due to NorthJeff's post from Mr. Ozoga, I'll go ahead and ask. What exactly is the NRC's purpose and what benefits were they supposed to provide when they were created. I have limited knowledge of the subject because I think when they started I was about 12, and I don't want to say what I personally think because I don't want to bias the responses.

-GB
 

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The NRC was supposed to insure that decisions were made based on sound science(proposal G) without any political influences. Unfortunately, it seems to have only made things worse. The NRC seems to listen to the groups that make the most noise rather than what the science indicates.
 

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Some of us our making quite a bit of noise!!;)

Basically, the DNR completes their scientific studies, research, etc., and makes their recommendations to the NRC. The NRC then makes the regulatory decisions that effect our wildlife and habitat, based on the recommendations of the DNR, and whatever else influences their decision. I may be wrong, but I was under the impression that Proposal G dictated the NRC would make their decisions based on scientific research and fact. What has happened though is that SOCIAL science has definately crept into the equation, and that allows the NRC an even broader range of decisions they can reach, influenced by a multitude of other factors besides actual biological scientific research and fact. The NRC commisioners are also appointed by the current governer and need no biological expertise or background in professional management.

I don't know how much they are paid, or even if they are paid, but they basically dictate the direction our wildlife resources take, for better or for worse, based on their decisions.
 

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precisely,NJ - And since SOCIAL has apparently replaced 'scientific' in their decisions,time for action has long since passed and WE are not acting. Assuming the NRC has a website, we should at least bombard them with emails demanding SCIENTIFIC be restored.Indeed,be foremost in their decision-making. Social considerations do enter into the issues but should not precede science IMO. MORE NOISE!
 

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The Purpose of the NRC has nothing to do with Proposal G.

The NRC, then called the Conservation Commission was formed in 1921. In 1968 when the Department of Conservation was renamed the Department of Natural Resources was when the Conservation Commission was also renamed as the Natural Resource Commission.

The Conservation Commission and the NRC was never meant to be comprised of biologists or any particular professional. It was meant then and still today to be a 7 member citizen body appointed by the governor. This law creating the commission was first established by Act 17 of Public Acts of 1921. Through law changes and the recodification of wildlife laws and although established under a different title the wording establishing the commission is basically the same as it is today.

http://www.michiganlegislature.org/...-501&highlight=
 

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Personally, it is time for dissolving the NRC. In fact, if we continue to make biological decisions based on popularity, then we should consider the elimination of the DNR also. Since the NRC and the Governor have already made decisions based on emotional outcries rather than scientific research (i.e., reintroduction of supplemental feeding the UP and the current Dove season fiasco), I think the Gov would be more than happy to save the DNR budget money for her other "feel good" programs that we cannot afford.

I have already sent that very idea to my state senator and I will be send a note to the Governor again proposing this. Since the NRC and the Governor are all scared to make decisions and want to hide behind referendums, why in the hell do we have elected officials in the first place??

Dan
 

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I find the blatant disregard for constitionally required decision making based on scientific principles for all elements of state govt. (UNcluding the NRC?)to be a reflection on the integrity of each individual member thereof. They must be held accountable to the people they represent.
 

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I am very good friends with Commissioner Campbell. His induction into the National trapping hall of fame, and Michigans Trapping Hall of Fame plus previous president of MUCC among other decorations make him more than qualified to oversee the MIDNR and make sound decisions for our wildlife.
 

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Originally posted by jimmyboy
...blatant disregard for constitionally required decision making....
What constitutional requirement is that? :confused:

Sometimes we all need to know how things work. Unfortunately, hunting and fishing have nothing to do with the constitution in this state. It is a privilege not a right. The constitution guarantees rights.
 

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:DSure, and the privilege of doing it.:D
 

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Originally posted by Swamp Ghost
Not constitutional, just a legal mandate.
Which is being carried out. Sometimes in mine, sometimes in others opinion, not properly but then again, that is just opinions.;)
 

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"State government has a legal mandate and moral responsibility to act, even if contrary to public will, where the integrity of the resource is threatened. Thus, the real challenge of the future of deer management will be to carefully sort out the social from biological, to respond to the will of the public for the former, and to take leadership, even if unpopular, for the latter." http://www.michigan.gov/dnr/0,1607,...28543--,00.html
 

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Found this in the LSJ,

In 1996, Michigan voters passed Proposal G, which promised that the NRC would utilize "principles of sound scientific management" when making wildlife decisions. Since then, however, the NRC has continually made decisions that are neither "sound" nor "scientific."

Take, for example, the commission's June 2003 decision to overturn an "early season grain ban" by allowing bear hunters to use bait known also to attract deer and elk. This increased the risk of serious disease transmission known to occur over bait piles. The reason for the change? According to a published quote by NRC member Bob Garner, "People are doing it anyhow."

But probably the worst offense in the face of "sound science" - one that predates Proposal G, but continues to be an issue - is the way our deer herd is managed.

Deer numbers are deliberately maintained at their current high levels because the NRC views white-tailed deer as a "cash crop." After all, hunters must pay a fee to kill them.

The NRC perpetually claims it wants to reduce deer numbers, yet each year reports that the deer population is just under "2 million."

The NRC also caters to the hunters' desire to take bucks over does by giving hunters a choice, virtually guaranteeing that a large percentage of fawn-bearing does are left to reproduce and replenish - or even increase - the herd the following year.

This occurs despite the rising risks and insurance costs for the rest of us due to deer vehicle collisions, crop damage, etc.

Ninety-six percent of Michigan citizens do not partake in consumptive wildlife activities, including 2.7 million wildlife watchers who outnumber and outspend all of their consumptive counterparts. While these figures should garner most people consideration in wildlife decisions, the NRC continues to act instead as if wildlife is a commodity that exists primarily for those who choose to buy a license to kill it.

By law, wildlife is held in trust for all people. Isn't it time, then, that all people are equally represented in the decisions affecting it?

The result would undoubtedly be an improvement for all, including wildlife.
~Jodi Louth

Jodi Louth is director of the Saline-based Citizens for Fair Natural Resources Representation.

http://www.lsj.com/opinions/letters/040314_loutptv_(enviro)_11atxt.html


From Ozoga's letter to the NRC:


The Future

I’ve been involved, as a professional, with deer and deer hunting for over 40 years. I’ve seen some changes during that time. But I can assure you, the change will be immense in the next couple of decades, as deer management shifts from an emphasis on quantity to one of quality.

In the future, managers will be require to place greater emphasis on creating and maintaining smaller deer herds that are not only nutritionally balanced, but also socially balanced.

Most hunters probably are unaware, but there is a strong “naturalism” movement in progress. In the future, greater emphasis will be placed on such things as biodiversity, old growth forest stands, an ecological approach to resource management, and general trend toward producing plant and animal communities more like those that existed prior to the white man’s arrival on this continent. These changes will greatly impact whitetailed deer populations, especially on public land.

Depending upon where you get your figures, roughly 10 percent of the American populus are hunters, 10 percent are antihunters, and 80 percent are nonhunters. Most nonhunters are not against hunting, but they are concerned about the welfare of wild species. We’ll never convert antihunters to hunters, but if we as hunters offend nonhunters, many could become antihunters.

Public concern for animal welfare, and the debate over hunting impacts, more than likely will intensify in the future. (More states are having to amend their constitutions to protect hunting rights. That should tell you something.) This trend, often with a greater emphasis on a “hands-off or nonlethal” approach to deer management, will take center stage. As a result, the nonhunting public will be more prominent in deciding deer management policies. These nonhunters will ultimately decide whether we hunt deer.

I also think hunters should emulate natural predators whenever possible, by becoming more selective harvesters and inflicting mortality that more closely mimics natural predation. This means holding peer populations in numerical balance with existing food and cover. It also means maintaining deer populations that are in social harmony with proper sex and age structure. This is what QDM is all about.
Something to think about.
 

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I heard Bob Garner used an example as to why he was not for mandatory AR's because the deer he shot last year, which he thought was a doe, turned out to be a 3" spike. I think it was Leon Hank that responded, "We're willing to work with you on that", or something to that effect.

I got to ask you guys, have you ever pulled the trigger when it was possible you may be shooting an antlered buck, when you were intending to shoot a doe?!? Good think Mr. Garner had a buck tag! or, I suppose he would have taken more time to identify his target before he shot, if he didn't have the buck tag? and if that is the case, it brings up the question, is there a time when it is O.K. ever to take the time to correctly identify an animal in one circumstance, but not in another?

I'm not saying I would never make a mistake, but be certain if I did I would be taking all the blame, regardless of what tags or tag I carried, or what AR's were in place, or not in place.
 

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You know what they say about opinions.......everybody has one.;)

Fortunately I haven't shot at a doe and found it to be a buck but I have made plenty of mistakes. It's really hard to be perfect.

Of course I'm still waiting to hear about the better way than the present way too. I don't have a better way than the NRC, do you?

Of course here we are talking about the NRC not 118 or QDM.
 

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"State government has a legal mandate and moral responsibility to act, even if contrary to public will, where the integrity of the resource is threatened. Thus, the real challenge of the future of deer management will be to carefully sort out the social from biological, to respond to the will of the public for the former, and to take leadership, even if unpopular, for the latter." http://www.michigan.gov/dnr/0,1607,...28543--,00.html

I don't mind the current system, if the above is followed. I guess we have opinions that vary, but in my opinion, the above is not followed. Gary Alt of PA, had said his bear management activities had been challenged in court twice in his many years in charge of the program. His department was able to win easily both times, because his management practices were only based on sound, scientific research, period. I would like that same type of accountability to be applied to the decisions of the NRC. Sure, they have the authority to make any decision they want, but I would like to see some accountability on those decisions, and I'd like to see those decisions be able to stand the scrutinity of our judicial system.

I personally would be happy to stand under that type of scrutiny for the decisions that I would make, and would think that unless there is something to hide, the current NRC would too.
 
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