Salt Lake City, UT: The Mule Deer Foundation praised the U.S. House of Representatives for yesterday’s passage of the America’s Conservation Enhancement (ACE) Act by voice vote. Their support will send the bipartisan legislation, that passed the Senate in September, to the president for his signature. The ACE Act compiles a number of conservation-related bills that have broad support. Most notably for mule deer enthusiasts is the provision to establish a task force and direct research funding to tackle chronic wasting disease, as well as allowing states to direct a portion of the excise taxes paid by sportsmen and -women to programs that encourage the recruitment, retention and reactivation (R3) of hunters and recreational shooters.
“The Mule Deer Foundation appreciates this Congress for once again recognizing that conservation is a broadly supported issue, and working together to pass the ACE Act,” commented Mule Deer Foundation President/CEO Miles Moretti. “Chronic wasting disease is a growing issue for deer hunters as more states are struggling with reducing transmission of the fatal disease. In addition, MDF and our state and non-profit partners have been working hard on R3 efforts to introduce more people to our hunting and recreational shooting traditions. The ACE Act will help direct resources and focus to these important issues and we thank Senator John Barrasso and Congressman Mike Thompson for their leadership on this package.”
In addition to the CWD and R3 provisions, the ACE Act addresses a number of other conservation priorities. The bill reauthorizes the North American Wetlands Conservation Act at $60 million annually. It also reauthorizes the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, an organization that has coordinated funding for habitat conservation projects that MDF and many other organizations are implementing. Other provisions support Chesapeake Bay and Great Lakes conservation programs, express congressional support for the use of voluntary, collaborative agreements in species conservation, and authorizes a national partnership for fisheries habitat.
The Mule Deer Foundation is the only conservation group in North America dedicated to restoring, improving and protecting mule deer and black-tailed deer and their habitat, with a focus on science and program efficiency. MDF is a strong voice for hunters in access, wildlife management and conservation policy issues. MDF acknowledges regulated hunting as a viable management component and is committed to recruitment and retention of men, women and youth into the shooting sports and conservation. Get involved in your state or become a member at www.muledeer.org or call 801-973-3940.