Arizona Trappers Association January 2010 Report

trapper7772003@yahoo.com

President — Rick Van Horn, 4185 N. Irving Street, Kingman, AZ 86409; phone: (928)757-3860; e-mail: rgvan@npgcable.com

Vice President — Mike Burris, 5452 E. Farmdale Avenue, Mesa AZ, 85206; phone: 480-654-1411; e-mail: bda30@cox.net

Recording Secretary — Mike Huffer, P.O. Box 11474, Scottsdale, AZ 85271; phone: 480-970-5904; e-mail: mjwildlife1@yahoo.com

Treasurer — Mike Hull, P.O. Box 3355, Chinle, AZ 86503; phone: (928)674-9542; e-mail: trapper7772003@yahoo.com

Membership Secretary — Amanda Prosser, P.O. Box 4111, Chino Valley, AZ 86323; phone: 928-499-2114; e-mail: atamembershipsecretary@yahoo.com.

Fur Auction manager — Mike Huffer, P.O. Box 11474, Scottsdale, AZ 85271; phone: 480-970-5904; e-mail: mjwildlife1@yahoo.com

NTA Director — Cindy Seff, P.O. Box 762, Seligman, AZ 86337; phone: 480-390-0723; e-mail: AzTrappers@hughes.net

Scent Post — Winter/Duncan Davis, P.O. Box 86783, Phoenix, AZ, 85080; phone: 623-466-6799; e-mail: dunksdonk@yahoo.com

Membership Options:

• Adult membership including subscription to Trapper & Predator Caller — $30
• Junior (under 16) with subscription — $20
• Family membership with subscription — $35
• Oldtimer membership with subscription — $75
• Lifetime membership with subscription — $275

Complete membership application on first page of association section and send dues to:

ATA, Membership Secretary
Amanda Prosser
P.O. Box 4111, Chino Valley, AZ 86323
Phone: 928-499-2114

NTA DIRECTOR’S REPORT

First, I would like to apologize for not having a report in the T&PC for the last few months. My computer has been up and down and it has been a very frustrating time to say the least. Hopefully these problems are now all behind. I will do my best to catch up on a few things.

Todd Roggenkamp announced he would be stepping down as General Organizer effective Oct. 1, 2009. As to the bylaws of the NTA, the Executive Council is tasked with appointing someone to complete the term of any elected officer other then President. The EC had asked anyone who had an interest in the position to contact the EC before Sept. 1. Two individuals express an interest, Charlie Rath and John Daniel. After consideration, the EC offered the position to John Daniel and he has accepted.

Todd will be missed by us all, but rest assured he promised to continue to support and help the NTA and trappers however he can. He has left a message to us all: “It has been an honor and privilege to serve trappers and trapping over the past years as a director, council member and officer in the NTA. I wish you all the best as we move forward and remember, ‘together we stand, divided we fall.’”

Now, with that said, if only everyone that stands to cause wedges between various organizations would just remember this, look how much better off we would be.

Sam Smith has been acting as the NTA representative to FWTH, FICA and other like groups. While in Lima, NTA met a gentleman and his wife who are both familiar and active on the political fronts. Dave Linkhart is the eighth generation of his family to farm and trap in Greene County, Ohio. He is a 1972 graduate of The Ohio State University with a degree in Agricultural Education and Natural Resources. He and his wife Karen have been very active in many agricultural and conservation organizations at the local, state and national level. Karen is a graduate of Wright State University with a degree in English, and served for eight years on the Ohio Wildlife Council, a position appointed by the Governor. Dave served as President of the Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts and was active with that national association as well.

He currently serves as the Public Information Officer for the Ohio State Trappers Association. They have both been to Washington D.C. many times to lobby for several different organizations. They have two daughters, Lindsay and Mariah, both trappers and graduates of OSU with degrees from The School of Natural Resources. They raise 750 acres of corn and soybeans, cattle, buffalo and fish and catch several hundred ’coons a year, all of which are put up. Dave and Karen have volunteered to assist the NTA and the NTA decided to take them up on their offer. Dave and Karen represented the NTA a USSA banquet in OH and Dave also represented the NTA in NY City at a FWTH & a FICA event.

Here is a summary of events from Dave to date:

On Sept. 14, I represented the NTA at the annual meeting of Fur Wraps The Hill (FWTH), the lobby coalition we are a part of, at the law offices of Kelley Drye & Warren in New York City. The meeting was held in conjunction with the annual meeting of the Fur Information Council of America (FICA) and the Fur New York Banquet. After reviewing the financials, which for the present time are adequate, the group discussed 2009 political activities.

The Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act (AETE), passage of which was the goal of FWTH when it was founded, has seen its first convictions. Our European counterparts are envious of this legislation. It might see a constitutional challenge and we need to be continually supportive of this law in congress.
The BMP process might be in jeopardy due to funding limitations. Since this is not a line item in the federal budget, bureaucrats in the APHIS division of USDA set the amount within their budget. They seem to consider this an ongoing process and are willing to proscribe only a minimal amount to cover administrative costs. Scientists within the division realize this process has a deadline and want money to complete it. We might seek a meeting between the two groups to work out a possible solution.

A Fur Labeling Bill has been introduced in congress. In its original form, it required that the Asiatic Raccoon be labeled Raccoon Dog. That designation would have destroyed the product in the U.S. and Europe. That provision has been deleted due to efforts of FWTH. However there are other aspects of the bill that could impact the fur industry. It would require additional labels for garments that are not needed and remove the current $150 exemption. The fur ranchers of FWTH decided to not oppose the removal of the $150 exemption, since it would not affect their products, but question all other parts of the bill.

It is hoped that by gutting it of most of its provisions, it will die a quiet death in committee. This is likely since everyone on the hill is working on healthcare and other issues. I stated that trappers would oppose the removal of the $150 exemption since it could impact sales of small goods.

The Federal Trade Commission will rule on the Asiatic Raccoon name. We expect a favorable outcome there since their own guidelines prohibit naming any animal after two others.

Animal confinement issues in several states were discussed. Ohio is taking a proactive approach and put an initiative on the ballot with the help of the state legislature to form an animal confinement advisory board, which would set standards for the industry. This was in response to HSUS’s threat to try to totally outlaw most types of confinement, such as farrowing stalls for hogs, cages for chickens and pens for mink and foxes. Voters will decide this fall and other states are watching.

The Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF) 20th Anniversary Banquet and Auction will be Oct. 7 in Washington DC. FWTH has four seats in exchange for two fur jackets, compliments of FICA, donated for the auction. It was decided that Dave Sollman, Ex Dir of FWTH, Keith Kaplan, Ex Dir of FICA, Larry Lasoff of Kelley Drye & Warren and myself Dave Linkhart of NTA, would attend. We will be making visits to the hill while in DC.

The nomination of Cass Sunstein, an avowed animal rights activist, to an important position within the Department of the Interior, was discussed. The fact that the process was held up for nine months shows how contentious the appointment was. According to our legal counsel, Sunstein said he would not let his personal views affect his performance of the job. Many are skeptical. Access to public lands is a major issue to trappers. We will monitor his performance and work with our friends in congress to make sure he keeps his word.

On Tuesday, Sept. 15, I set in as a guest at the FICA meeting. Many of the same people are involved in both organizations. FICA representatives discussed ongoing promotional activities including ad campaigns and fur placement in various movies and TV shows. Since their budget is dependent on the fur trade, money is very tight.

Tuesday evening we attended the Fur New York Banquet where Mike Mengar of NAFA was honored as Fur New York Man of the Year.

On Oct. 7, our group of four made several visits to congressional offices in DC prior to attending the CSF Banquet. The issue most discussed was the fur labeling act. I stressed that it was harassment legislation from HSUS and others and did nothing to “protect” consumers. We also met with my freshman congressman and his staff and laid the groundwork for future activities. We know each other from his time at the Ohio Statehouse where we met numerous times on conservation issues.

At the banquet, I met many people who I’m sure will be invaluable contacts in future fights for our rights as sportsmen.

After attending several meetings as the representative of the National Trappers Association the last two months, and advising on public relation issues, the Executive Council asked that I be a part of a conference call Nov. 4. Prior to that, I was sent a copy of the contract the NTA had with the previous Director of National and International Affairs. That was the first time that I had seen all of the job responsibilities. President Kaatz had requested assistance with public relations and I had offered to help with media relations at upcoming conventions as well, so we were already looking at additional duties.

At the conference call, the EC requested that I submit a contract proposal by Jan. 1 for the position of DNIA. I am working on that proposal. It appears that the DNIA position has been a very demanding one for an individual and we are considering adding to that. For this and other reasons, I am considering a contract that would involve several people each with unique talents, abilities and availabilities. I would be the lead person and would attend a majority of the required meetings to maintain continuity, but some of the other responsibilities could be done by my team. In addition to the aforementioned responsibilities, we would offer to the NTA and affiliates, leadership training, media training and legislative contact assistance. These would be on an as requested basis and no cost would be incurred unless services would be rendered.

My team right now would consist of myself, my wife, Karen, perhaps one of our daughters and a friend who is the director of three federal training centers, two in the DC area and one in Denver. This proposal is very preliminary and will undoubtedly be modified often.

Before any action is taken, I will be in contact with NTA personnel and also people from the other organizations that we work with. I also welcome any input from NTA Directors and affiliates as to what you feel are the needs that we might help meet. I can be contacted by e-mail at kdmlink@juno.com or by cell phone at 937-903-7688 or home phone 1-937-376-5731. I will be in the combine often for the next week or so to finish harvest so I can trap, but the cell phone works fine there.

Jim Curran attended the Congressional Sportsmen Foundation, National Assembly of Sportsmen’s Caucuses in McCall, ID from Oct. 27 to 30, 2009. This was the sixth annual Sportsman-Legislator Summit and was attended by over 100 legislators and sportsmen representatives. The mission statement for the NASC: The National Assembly of Sportsmen’s Caucuses unites state legislators to support hunting, fishing and trapping in America. The NASC is made up of state legislators from 38 states that have formed their own sportsmen’s caucus from their members in their state. This association is under the umbrella of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation. In addition, there has been recently formed a Governors Sportsmen’s Caucus.

The NTA was asked to present two 45-minute programs on the NTA and trapping in the U.S. The theme of the presentations were the ISO standards, which created the need for BMP studies and how the BMP results were assisting in the manufacturing, development and usage of traps that met the international standards as humane restraining traps. It is very important to have the legislators understand our traps meet the ISO-TAG standard.

The NTA office put together educational packages for everyone; which included both videos, the Trapper Handbook, several tri-folds, one complete BMP and the Introduction to the BMP study. These packages were very well received. It is recommend that the NTA stay involved with this group as it is a direct line to the members of the state legislature’s fish and game committees where all anti-trapping legislation would be heard. Through Fur Wraps the Hill, we are connected with the Congressional Sportsmen Caucus and
Foundation, however this subgroup is where we connect with the State Legislators directly.

Sam Smith traveled to Austin, TX for the AFWA meetings the week of Sept. 14, 2009.

Shirley Wagner, Financial Administrator, has resigned effective Sept. 22. Her husband Jerry was awarded a government contract that will require that she spend a greater amount of time with the paperwork for their business. We will miss her and wish them both the best of luck. Office Manager Dave Roberts is planning to absorb Shirley’s workload as well as distribute it among current staff. The staff has been cross trained to meet these responsibilities. In addition, Dave has many years of experience as a financial administrator. The NTA will re-evaluate this situation at the end of the year.

General Organizer John Daniel and Vice President Karola Owen are currently looking into ways to make future Southeast and Northeast Regional NTA Conventions affordable and profitable, possibly altering years between the Southeast and the Northeast. The Western Regional was not a financial success and we believe that with the new guidelines that were developed for next year and discussed at the Board Meeting that we can avoid these losses on Regional conventions. One very big positive that came from this Convention was that the Montana Trappers received $1,160 from restricted items in the auction for the Footloose Initiative fight and then the NTA sent them another $2,065 (one-half of the un-restricted portions of the regional auction gross) for the same purpose. They also received $755 in scholarship money from restricted auction items and their convention split of $1,290.

The NTA membership is on a steady climb over the last few months.
You should have received your cash calendars by now. If you have not sent yours in yet, don’t delay, great way to make the NTA a few dollars and also give as gifts to family and friends.

A news article printed on the global warming issue gave a misleading view of the NTA’s stance on this subject. The NTA’s response has been posted on the NTA Web site.

The dates for the 2010 Regional Leadership conferences are as follows:
Midwest: March 19-21, 2010, Signature Inn, 101 Southern Veterans Parkway, Normal IL 61761 Ph# 309-454-4044, Cutoff date for reservations Feb. 19, 2010.

Western: March 25-28,2010, Super 8 Motel, 4250 Koval Lane, Las Vegas NV 89109 Ph# 702-794-0888, Cutoff date for reservations March 16, 2010.

Northeast: April 16-18, 2010, Fairfield Inn & Suites Saratoga-Malta, 101 Saratoga Village Boulevard Malta, NY 12020 Ph# 518-899-6900, Cutoff Date for reservations March 16, 2010.

Southeast: April 9-11, 2010, Calhoun, Georgia, see NTA Web site or watch for further information.

Everyone is encouraged to contact your legislature in Washington DC and encourage them to support HD 3749, which recognizes hunting, fishing and shooting on Federal public lands. In the definitions of this bill, hunting includes trapping in section 3 (5) a. Please pass this information along to your membership.

The court issued a ruling in the Maine Lynx case. It is very favorable, and denies the request for a permanent injunction based on a number of reasons, but two are important reasons for future disputes involving trapping.

First, that AWI failed to show that foot trap captures caused stress or PTSD to lynx that result in decreased long-term survival. Second, and this is big, very, very big, that the standard in ESA cases is harm to the species, not to the individual animal for issuing permanent injunctions. This standard is the whole deal. We won completely. AWI may still appeal the court’s decision so we’ll need to wait on that, but for now it is a tremendous victory.

As a reminder to Arizona Trappers, the annual fur donation hunt in Seligman is Jan. 9 , 2010. For more information, to help or register, please call me at 480-390-0723.

I will close by reminding you if you need more information, check out NTA’s Web site at www.nationaltrappers.com.

Also, if you are not a member or need to renew, you can do so on the Web site or by sending $30 for one year to: National Trappers Association, 2815 Washington Ave. Bedford, Indiana 47421.

Or for questions, call Headquarters at 812-277-9670.

If you ever need anything I can do to assist you or answer questions, please call. If I don’t know the answer, I will get it. Remember, I am only a phone call away — 480-390-0723.

Catch ya next Time.

— Cindy Seff
 

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