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On Friday September 7, HB 1483 was referred to the State Government Committee within the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. The process now begins to pass the bill out of committee and then off the floor of the House on its way to the Senate where it will undergo a similar process. The remaining time is short within this 2017-18 Legislative Session, but all efforts are being placed on moving the bill as swiftly as possible toward passage this fall. We have only until mid October to complete the process and hopefully have the Governor sign it into law.
Important bill information. Please contact your House and Senate members for your districts and request their urgent support of this extremely important bill.
HB 1483 is the most important bill in generations for sportsmen and the scientific management of our wildlife resources. It is designed to bring back the deer herd, improve hunting, create habitat for grouse and 150 other species of wildlife, and repair billions-of-dollars of damages to wildlife resources, hunting, and the outdoor industry that have been caused by Game Commission mismanagement. The bill will also assist the Legislature in overseeing the Commission and holding them accountable throughout the future.
Please read the official House Memorandum that briefly describes the many benefits of the bill.
Assessment of PGC's deer management program
By Blaine Toy
John Eveland (Forester, Wildlife Biologist, and Ecologist) wrote a very precise report of the PGC's deer management program. The report is long but very important reading. Click here to read this report.
Failed PGC Deer Policy Costing Taxpayers $92 Million Per Year
By Phil Wagner
On February 20th in the state capitol, Auditor General Eugene DePasquale announced in the presence of a room of sportsmen that the official financial audit of the Pennsylvania Game Commission was underway, and overdue. Read more
Accurate PGC Audit?
By Blaine Toy
The PA sportsmen need to question the early procedures surrounding the current audit of the PGC. AG DePasquale announced he was going to audit the PGC on February 20, 2018. He recently held a couple closed-door meetings with only selected sportsmen and groups that historically support the interests of PGC which many times contrast the views of PA sportsmen. My understanding is the media was not permitted to cover these meetings, which always raises suspicion as to the transparency of the meeting and input for the audit.
The AG stated at the original presser he is going to look at PEG's actions since 2014. I understand the last audit of PGC was sometime in 2004. This audit should cover from the last audit till now and not leave a 10-year void, a period in which many questionable financial actions were exposed by USP and others.
The Auditor General needs to hear from honest Sportsmen of PA to request a thorough audit of PGC not one potentially biasing opinions of a political cover-up. If you feel you have information to assist the AG with this investigation CLICK HERE and submit the information or contact them at Department of the Auditor General Finance Building, 613 North Street, Room 23, Harrisburg, PA 17120-0018 (717-787-1381). Your help is needed to insure an accurate and transparent audit of the PGC is done.
Please contact you representative and ask them to support an honest audit. This will hopefully correct any corruption and poor decision making with-in the PGC, and bring Pennsylvania back to the top rated hunting state it once was.
Find your Representative
Alert from USP Regarding audit
Please read this alert!
Increasing Rifle Purchase Age is Baseless
By Randy Santucci
Dicks Sporting Goods, a Pittsburgh based corporation, has recently decided to increase the age to purchase a rifle from 18 to 21. As a (58-year-old) life resident of the Commonwealth, I would like to bring forth some facts of rifle sales and use as it relates to Pennsylvania. Read more
Why Sportsmen should support HB 1483
It is very important that PA sportsmen support HB 1483. It is designed to solve PEG's greatest conservation mistake in the agency's over-one-hundred-year history. Click here to visit USP’s HB 1483 page listing several articles of interest to sportsmen. Please take time to read them and use them in helping returning wildlife to PA.
Additional information regarding the importance of HB 1483 can be read on the Friends of Pennsylvania web site. Click here to visit their site.
How was your 2017 deer hunting season?
By Blaine Toy
From all information I have heard so far 2017 was a very poor hunting season for most PA deer hunters thanks to our great PGC. It is a shame that PA when from being one of the best hunting states to the nation to the laughing stock of the nation now.
Several individuals that I have talked to use to be very active in deer hunting, but now have given up hunting due to the lack of deer to hunt. The normal answer is “Why waste my time in the woods hunting when there are no deer to be seen”.
One hunting group I talked to spent the first full week hunting seen very few deer and only harvested one deer, however the same group hunting the bear season harvested 4 bears. That 4 days hunting bear and six days hunting deer, shows the poor deer population, again thanks to our great PGC.
Attempting to teach youth the sport of hunting is a waste of time, many I have talked to stated they take their children/grandchildren deer hunting but after not seeing any deer the youth lose interest and no longer want to waste their time.
Please read an article from a frustrated deer hunter that I was sent.
8 Worst States to Bowhunt (Even with a Crossbow)
If PA is ever to get hunting back we must contact you representatives to support and pass HB 1483. This bill is designed to address "deer management and wildlife habitat, rural economies, and Game Commission accountability". Rep. Maloney distributed the memo under the title "Wildlife Habitat". It is important that sportsmen ask their legislators to cosponsor this vital piece of legislation
For the past 16 years, the Game Commission has continued to reduce the statewide deer herd to nearly un-huntable numbers in some regions in an attempt to improve forest seedling regeneration and to promote native wildflowers. Independent studies as well as state and federal investigations have indicated that virtually no scientific benefits have resulted from PGC's action, while the impacts to sportsmen, family businesses, rural communities, and the Commonwealth's economy have been outrageous and unacceptable.
The decline in tourism and recreation has now impacted rural economies and the State by over $7 billion in the past dozen years. Collapsing the state deer herd has been called the greatest conservation mistake in the over 100 year history of the Game Commission. HB 1483 will rebuild Pennsylvania's deer herd, improve the populations of grouse and other wildlife, return over 200,000 sportsman who have quit hunting because of the lack of deer, re-invigorate rural economies by over $500 million per year, and generate $40 million of annual tax revenues for local and state governments. Under PGC's current plan, it would take the Game Commission 100 to 200 years to achieve the same degree of habitat improvements as Rep. Maloney's bill will accomplish in 10 to 15 years
Please contact your legislator either by phone or email and request that he or she immediately cosponsors Representative Dave Maloney's "Wildlife Habitat" bill (HB 1483).
ATTENTION PA HUNTERS VERY IMPORTANT
PLEASE TAKE ACTION
find your Representative or Senator.
Handgun Concealed Carry Reciprocity
in the various States
By Ron Benjamin
As Chairman of the USP FIREARMS Committee, Read more
Concealed Carry Weapons Permit Travel
By Ron Benjamin
Recently, a USP member sent me an email suggesting Maryland State Police are using their vehicle on-board computers connected to automatic license plate readers to flag out-of-state vehicles with owners who have concealed carry weapons permits (CCWs). Read More
Why the Game Commission and DCNR Nearly Collapsed
Pennsylvania’s Deer Herd, and the Impacts to Sport Hunting,
Wildlife Populations, and the Commonwealth’s Economy
The Need to Pass HB 1483 for Deer Management, Wildlife Habitat,
and Game Commission Accountability.
In 1998, DCNR entered into an agreement with the Forest Stewardship Council – a German-based environmental organization . Read more
"WE WILL HAVE TO WAIT FOR THIS GENERATION TO DIE"
By Ralph Saggiomo
This or something to that effect is what Dr. Alt of the Pennsylvania Game Commission (PGC) stated some years ago, when his program was adopted by the PGC and went into effect to reduce the Whitetail Deer herd, much to the dismay of many of the sportsmen/women of PA.
Well go to HADES Dr. Alt! Some of us are still here to testify how you and the powers to be at that time tried, and in some cases destroyed, the traditional aspect of hunting here in PA.
I have been hunting and trapping in this great state since 1946. Myself and many others of my generation are still here to testify that the PGC was founded in 1895 under title 54 to propagate for the Hunters and Trappers of PA. Hopefully the sitting Commissioners have not lost sight of that Oath they have taken!!!
Hopefully they will not give in to those that come to the table disguised as pro-hunting advocates, but have anti-hunting or other political agendas that will negatively impact our Hunting Fraternity. Many of us believe these hidden agendas have caused the demise of license buying Sportsmen/women.
Hunters and Trappers created the PGC over 120 years ago, and many that followed had the foresight to protect the vision of the founding fathers of this Commission. The PGC mission was to propagate game for the sportsmen/women of PA. Only a clear focus of this mandate should be accepted by those that elect the future leadership of the PGC. We may not be here much longer, but we know from whence we have come and where we are now.
"Save the Babe, Throw out the wash water".
Attention gun owners, could this deer reduction program just be another assault on our 2nd amendment rights?
Eliminate hunting then why own guns?
Forester, Wildlife Biologist, and Ecologist
John Eveland is
by education and profession a forester, wildlife biologist,
and ecologist. Of the three big game mammals in Pennsylvania
(white-tailed deer, black bear, and elk), he conducted the
original statewide research, wrote the original state management
plans, and was directly involved in the successful recovery
of two of these species -- black bears and elk.
John Eveland can
be reached at (412)601-0077, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Commission’s response to a hunters comment on our website:
The old proverb
you can’t beat city hall is proved more and more by the Pennsylvania
Game Commission. They seem to have many liberal Judges in
their pockets. The most recent action involves Sunday hunting.
Their power should be criminal as it seems the PGC will never
be beaten in a major challenge. Read
indicates coyote predation
deer in East manageable
USP president Randy
Santucci was invited and presented research on the coyote
problem four years ago to the PGC board of commissioners.
Dr. Rosenberry refuted the research and they did not take
any action. Dr. Rosenberry is acknowledged as a contributor
in the current coyote predation article attached. Another
time USP was right and the PGC wrong.
here to read the article.
the Hunting Field for Coyotes
Dr. Dennis Wydra
use of semi-automatic rifles for hunting in Pennsylvania has
been illegal for decades... Read
Rifles in the Hunting Woods
accurate, they're customizable and they're fun to shoot. Why
you're about to see more AR-style rifles in the woods.
By Blaine Toy
Recently USP President
Randy Santucci was interviewed about an idea he had by John
Hayes of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette regarding the overpopulation
of urban deer. Read more
THEIR BANG FOR THE BUCK
As documented in
the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources'
(DCNR's) Deer Management Plan, concurrent seasons, antler
restrictions, and hunters, themselves, have been used to reduce
the deer population and maintain the herd at exceedingly low
numbers. Read more
Costs and Benefits of FSC Certification of DCNR Forests
Impact of the DCNR/PGC
Marcellus Mess on Elmerton Avenue
For quite a few
years now, it is no secret that The Unified Sportsmen of Pennsylvania
has had a rocky relationship with the Pennsylvania Game Commission,
primarily over deer management. Read
Sportsmen of Pennsylvania
Supports responsible Drilling.
visit our new gas page.
information for our visitors with
regarding the deer situation in their
find your Representative
USP is here for the sportsmen.
purpose of the Unified Sportsmen of Pennsylvania is to bring
attention to important issues relating to hunting, fishing,
trapping and shooting. We publish and distribute
a quarterly news letter (Woods & Waters) for our members.
Does That Mean Forever?
Wayne Haas, USP Vice President
The big sign below
is self-explanatory, simple, and to the point. No Doe Hunting!
But, does that mean
forever, absolutely not. There is nobody that wants to harvest
antlerless deer more than USP. But, at the present time in
history because of the needless reduction of the deer herd
since 2001, we believe there needs to be an increase in the
number of deer. We would like to see the day when hunters
harvest over 200,000 buck and 200,000 doe and if regulations
were changed to only one deer per hunter everywhere except
special regulation areas, with 750,000 total hunters, over
half of all hunters would take home a deer to enjoy at the
table. License sales would be sure to increase and back to
the good old days we would go.
Therefore, for a
private landowner to have the ability to control their land
to make this happen (if wanted), USP has printed and has available
the No Doe Hunting signs below. Most PGC Game Lands and DCNR
State Forests need these signs too!
that regular deer hunting season is over, we hope everyone
had a safe hunting season. However, from feedback and complaint’s
we have been getting at USP; the season was another failure
with hunters seeing very few deer. Thanks to the PGC's failed
deer management plan with very few deer remaining, we can
no longer call it hunting, just time enjoying the outdoors.
second archery and primitive flintlock hunting season open;
we ask all hunters to be extremely careful and insure and
identify your target. At this time hunters will be wearing
camouflage while hunting, and not wearing the
florescent orange, and can very
easily blend into the background .
are asking the hunter’s to not shoot a doe and help the deer
doe hunting signs are available from USP. To cover our printing
cost the signs; we sell them at $.60 each plus shipping.
To purchase signs contact Treasurer Pete Kingsley at 717-471-5820,
340 Hilltop Road, Strasburg, PA 17579.
sportsmen are well aware there are locations with-in Pennsylvania
that are over populated with deer, but the majority of the
state has had the herd decimated. This sport of hunting must
be preserved for our future generations of children and
grandchildren, change to PGC's self destruction of siding
with the anti-hunters. We sportsmen must band together and
attempt to end the fraud of the PGC.
supports returning to the traditional two week buck season
followed by a two day doe season. We believe the PGC should
go back to doe allocations by county instead of Wildlife Management
Units. If a county has a deer shortage; close that county
and give the herd a chance to build back up. Where there are
an abundance of deer extend the doe season if necessary.
- To promote and
maintain high standards in conservation of our natural resources.
- To cooperate with
State and Federal agencies and all sportsmen organizations
to protect and achieve the needs of both wildlife and sportsmen.
- To defend our heritage
right to hunt, fish, trap, and to protect our constitutional
right to keep and bear arms.
- To promote programs to educate the public
about hunting, fishing, trapping and shooting for all future
the largest independent statewide sportsmen organization in
Pennsylvania, we can accomplish a lot with just a small amount
of money. All of the USP officers are highly motivated, interested,
knowledgeable sportsmen and all are non salaried, and even
our professional full time representative in Harrisburg is
a non salaried officer. In spite of all this we cannot perform
miracles, and we cannot exist without you as a member.