Hoeven Cosponors Sportsmen's Bill to Support Hunting, Fishing and Outdoor Recreation

WASHINGTON – Senator John Hoeven today announced that he is again cosponsoring bipartisan legislation to improve opportunities for hunting, fishing and other outdoor recreation. The Sportsmen’s Act of 2015 reauthorizes important conservation programs, improves access to federal lands and helps to boost the outdoor recreation economy.

“Like many North Dakotans, my family and I enjoy the tremendous hunting and fishing opportunities in our state,” said Hoeven. “Our nation has a rich outdoor heritage, and this legislation will help to protect and enhance recreation opportunities for hunters, anglers and other outdoor enthusiasts in North Dakota and across the country.”     

The Sportsmen’s Act of 2015 contains a range of provisions including:

  • The Recreational Fishing and Hunting Heritage Opportunities Act, which protects the public’s right to recreational hunting, fishing and shooting on Bureau of Land Management and Forest Service lands.
  • The Hunting, Fishing and Recreational Shooting Protection Act, which exempts lead-shot ammunition and lead fishing tackle from being regulated by the Toxic Substances Control Act, leaving the existing authority to state fish and game agencies and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
  • Bows Transported through National Parks provision to prevent the National Park Service from restricting the lawful transport of bows and crossbows through national parks. Currently, firearms can be transported through national parks, but not bows.
  • Reauthorizes the North American Wetlands Conservation Act and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation through 2019.
  • The Making Public Lands Public Act, which requires the greater of 1.5 percent or $10 million of annual Land and Water Conservation Funds for improving recreational access to existing federal lands.
  • The HUNT Act, which directs all federal public land management agencies to improve access to high priority federal lands where hunting, fishing and outdoor recreation are permitted.
  • The Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act, which helps states build and maintain shooting ranges on federal and non-federal lands.

Hoeven is cosponsoring the bipartisan legislation, which was introduced by Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.). Hoeven serves on the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources and has also been a member of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus since January 2011. The senator cosponsored similar sportsmen’s legislation in the last Congress.