Block funding debacle?


Well-known member
Jan 9, 2001
Laramie, WY

Nothing unreasonable with the costs and it is a good program, IMO.

I believe there is some room for improvement, likely some over-sight needed, etc.

I had a good talk with Tim A. about both Montana's BMP and Wyoming's HMA program a couple months ago. We both thought that Montana would benefit from some of the things that work well in Wyoming, and vice-versa.

Ben Lamb

Well-known member
Aug 6, 2010
Cedar, MI
The tactic this session has been to take after the spending authority of FWP when it comes to access and habitat conservation. The sponsor of HB 403, Dave Hagstrom, has repeatedly said that his goal is to end Habitat Montana, new Fishing Access Site Acquisitions and habitat conservation programs in spite of overwhelming opposition to this poorly thought out idea.

It's backfired in large part due to groups like RMEF, Pheasants Forever, DU, WSF, etc, really stepping up to the plate and exerting significant influence in the decision making process.

There has also had a dedicated team of lobbyists working on this issue for the last few weeks and a lot of credit should go to MWF & MT TU for their determination and willingness to push the issue hard when the committee's have been a little terse and somewhat combative. We're not out of the woods yet. HB 2 isn't perfect and it could still hamper landowner services, meaning a less responsive department when it comes to working with landowners in Block Management.

HB 403 is still being debated in Senate Finance and Claims and there will be amendments offered to restore authority, but I would expect their to be attempts to remove the ability of the agency to purchase land, which is still hugely problematic when we look at projects like Red Hill or future Fishing Access Site Acquisitions. It would also mean that if a property like the Marias River WMA comes up in the budget cycle, sportsmen would lose out.

Keep the comments coming in on HB 403 and on Block Management, it's working and Legislators are being very responsive to input from constituents.