North Dakota Senate committee to take up baiting, fishing tournament bills Thursday
HB 1151, which the House passed 76-18, would strip the Game and Fish Department of its authority to ban hunting big game over bait as a way to mitigate potential spread of chronic wasting disease.
BISMARCK — Hearings on two key hunting- and fishing-related bills are on tap Thursday morning in the North Dakota Legislature.
The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee is scheduled to take up HB 1151 at 9 a.m. Thursday. The bill, which state House lawmakers passed 76-18, would strip the North Dakota Game and Fish Department of its authority to ban hunting big game over bait as a way to mitigate the potential spread of chronic wasting disease.
The bill would allow hunting big game over bait on private property from Aug. 25 through Jan. 7, with a stipulation that no more than 50 gallons of bait could be placed at a time, with a setback requirement of at least 150 feet from the landowner’s property line.
The Game and Fish Department and the North Dakota Wildlife Federation both oppose the bill.
Then, at 10 a.m. Thursday, the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee is scheduled to hear HB 1538 , a bill that would eliminate the 10% conservation fee the Game and Fish Department currently charges for fishing contest organizers and replace it with an administrative fee not to exceed $75 for nonprofit groups and $2,500 for organizers of larger tournaments.
The legislation, which passed the House by a 90-2 vote, would also eliminate the requirement that nonprofits return 75% of fishing contest proceeds to contest participants.
The bill has widespread support among fishing tournament organizers and community tourism groups across the state, but Game and Fish, the Wildlife Federation and the North Dakota Sportfishing Congress all oppose the bill.
The North Dakota Game and Fish Department provides regular updates on the status of outdoors-related legislation on its website at gf.nd.gov/legislation .