Letter to the Editor: Haddock against transfer of $150M from PA Game Commission

As an avid outdoorsman, I am firmly opposed to a proposal by state Senate Republicans to take $150 million from the PA Game Commission and transfer it to the Clean Streams Fund.

I learned about the plan from various stakeholders’ groups representing sportsmen across Pennsylvania. I was surprised and disappointed that the commission was mum about it and did not seem to be fighting harder for themselves to protect funding that is meant for sportsmen programs. If the transfer occurs, the state also will lose approximately $40 million in federal grant funding through the Pittman Robertson Wildlife Restoration Act for perpetuity.

It is not in my nature to let things fall where they may, and so after hearing nothing about it from the Game Commission, I questioned them during a House Game and Fisheries Committee meeting earlier this year. I asked the Game Commission executive director why there was no public statement on their position. The director reasoned that no one asked. I then said that I was asking as a member of the House and he said they were against the $150 million transfer.

Fast forward several months and I am pleased to report that House Democrats were successful in blocking the idea from becoming part of the 2023-24 state budget package. The PA Game Commission remains fully funded and PA sportsmen can continue to enjoy the outdoors.

State Rep. Jim Haddock