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To the editor:

The recently concluded Utah Wildlife Board public hearing on the sandhill crane hunt showed clearly that the compulsive need of Utah's wildlife bureaucrats to be in charge, to control, to be experts, to make the rules, to - in a word - manage, is still locked firmly in place.No appeal to reason, common sense or emotion did any good. It was a waste of time. The Division of Wildlife Resources remains a commercial hunting club.

Can anything be done to loosen this grip around the throat of Utah's wild creatures? There are possibilities:

- Take the DWR off budget by eliminating the 6 percent general fund taxpayer subsidy to the division. When the food tax is eliminated by popular vote, this will be a $1.3 million tax savings cut.

- Introduce and pass legislation that will eliminate the sale of non-resident hunting licenses. This will not only protect Utah's wildlife heritage but will take $2.7 million out of DWR hands.

- Don't participate in the so-called non-game income tax check-off. This contribution does nothing but subsidize the hunting operation.

- Don't buy a hunting license. Do everything you like about hunting - family togetherness, walking around in the woods, riding around in the pickup, drinking beer, seeing wild animals - just don't kill anything. Not buying a license to kill means more bucks in your pocket, more bucks in the mountains and fewer bucks in the hands of division bureaucrats.

Jim Platte


Project: Spiral Sky Dancer