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June 24, 2008

A Column of Personal Opinion
By State Senator Sheila Harsdorf

Sportsmen Survey Says...

Last month, many of you took the opportunity to respond to my 2008 Sportsmen Survey, which I distributed and posted on my website, The newsletter talked about accomplishments in preserving our natural resources through the state’s stewardship program and protections for gun-owners.

Protecting our hunting and fishing traditions is something that I not only consider a legislative priority, but is something that is personally important to me. I was raised on a farm where hunting, fishing and gun ownership was an important part of my life. I want to ensure that these opportunities continue for my family and yours. My son got his first deer last year, and I was proud to be at his side. Our outdoor traditions are part of our rural heritage.

This is why I ask for your involvement and input. On the survey, I posed questions about the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resource (DNR) performance of managing the state’s deer population, willingness to pay higher fees to enhance conservation programs, ideas about increased funding for purchasing land for recreation and conservation, and a longer gun deer hunting season.

39% rated the DNR’s performance good on managing the deer population, 34% said fair, 22% said poor, and 5% said excellent. In regards to increased fees for conservation programs, 43% wanted no more, 34% said a little more, 15% said reduce fees, and 8% wanted to pay a lot more. I also asked how much land the state should purchase for recreation and conservation. 33% wanted the state to purchase a lot more, 30% a little more, 28% said no more, while 8% said sell some and 1% said sell it all. Finally, in regards to a longer gun deer hunting season, 57% supported lengthening it while 43% opposed.

If you would like to add your input to these survey results, please visit my website Your feedback is critical to building a better Wisconsin together.