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Simplifying deer hunting regulations is topic of public meetings (February 12, 2008)

Simplifying regulations governing Minnesota’s deer hunting seasons will be the topic of nine public meetings scheduled in March by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR).

“This is an opportunity for hunters to provide input on proposals that would significantly simplify deer hunting regulations,” said Steve Merchant, DNR wildlife programs manager. “We encourage anyone with an interest in hunting issues to attend.”

Simplification proposals to be discussed include:

· eliminating the all-season deer license but still giving hunters the opportunity to
participate in the firearms, archery and muzzleloader seasons

· consolidating the number of deer hunting zones from six to two

· eliminating license validation

· changing cartridge requirements.

The proposals are based on recommendations from a 13-member citizen committee assembled by the DNR. Committee members represented a variety of backgrounds and interests including deer hunting groups, new hunters, outdoor media and individuals with local knowledge of deer hunting issues. The committee’s complete report is available online at mndnr.gov/hunting/deer/simplify.

Meetings will be conducted so participants may attend any time during a meeting to discuss issues and offer comments. Meetings are scheduled in:

· Deer River, 7-9 p.m., March 5, at Morse Town Hall, 32775 Minnesota Highway 46

· Aurora, 6-9 p.m., March 6, at Aurora Community Center, 15 West 1st Ave. North

· St. Paul, 7-9 p.m., March 6, at the DNR/PCA Cafeteria, 500 Lafayette Rd.

· Hutchinson, 7-9 p.m., March 10, in Room 141 of Ridgewater College, 2 Century Ave.
SE, Hutchinson

· Winona, 7-9 p.m., March 11, at Elks Club, 4540 Service Drive

· Near Watson, 7-9 p.m., March 12, at Lac qui Parle Wildlife Management Area
headquarters, 14047 20th St. NW

· Park Rapids, 7-9 p.m., March 13, at Century School Cafeteria, 501 Helten Ave.

· Mora, 7-9 p.m., March 13, at Mora Public Library, 200 Maple Ave. West

· Thief River Falls, 7-9 p.m., March 25 in at Northland Community College Auditorium.

Each year, the DNR conducts public meetings throughout the state to gauge hunter opinions about regulations, seasons and other wildlife management issues. Those who cannot attend the meetings are urged to e-mail comments to wildlife@dnr.state.mn.us.

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