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Can’t blame snomo clubs

for holiday hunt concerns

Nobody should blame North Woods tourism and snowmobile club officials for getting a little concerned about whether the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) will suddenly push a December holiday deer hunt framework beyond farm country and the chronic wasting disease zones.


Industry officials showed up at the first public hearing in Eagle River last week on proposed changes to the deer seasons and other regulations, changes that are in response to a Deer Trustee Report and modifications made by a stakeholder Action Team.


Hearing attendees were told by state officials that a holiday hunt isn’t being proposed for management units north of Highway 64, countering reports that somebody on the Action Team suggested such a hunt could provide more deer hunting opportunity everywhere when workers and students have time off between Christmas and New years.


The DNR’s track record on intending one thing and suddenly doing another is well-documented. One glaring example is the four-day antlerless deer hunt that follows the muzzleloader season — a hunt never intended for northern counties that somehow became a statewide hunt.


Even today, that four-day hunt in mid-December makes no sense in northern Wisconsin. We have a miserable deer population that doesn’t need more culling and snowmobile club officials are trying to get trail systems signed and inspected. It is no time to have landowners saying their gates will remain shut to club volunteers and snowmobilers because some type of gun deer season is still open.


The other way to view this is that after three months of archery deer hunting, a youth hunt, a nine-day gun hunt and a 10-day muzzleloader season, the deer herd here can’t handle any more pressure. We just don’t need more opportunity to kill antlerless deer.


For the record, we think it’s important that any regulation change regarding a holiday hunt specify that such a season will not occur north of Highway 64. Let’s not assume that future DNR leaders and members of the Natural Resources Board will remember that the North Woods doesn’t want this hunt.

Walker really posturing

on the $100 million plan

There was some intense political posturing involved in Gov. Scott Walker’s recent signing of a bill to spend $100 million on property tax relief for Wisconsin homeowners.


The governor could have accomplished the same feat with a lot less fanfare by just giving back some of the $432 million he cut from the school aid budget in his first year in office, the state shirking its responsibility to provide two-thirds funding for state schools.


Reports issued by the governor’s office were totally vague and unclear about how the tax relief would be accomplished, but critics mentioned that 82 of the state’s 427 school districts would receive no relief.


The relief plan is miniscule compared to what Act 10 did to allow school administrators to save money on benefits and retirement.


Behind the editorial ‘we’


Members of the Vilas County News-Review editorial board include Publisher Kurt Krueger, Editor Gary Ridderbusch and Assistant Editor Anthony Drew.
Tuesday, October 29, 2013 11:08 AM

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