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Legislation

 Hunting sports face constant challenges that impair the quality, and at times the very existence of hunting in general. A strong and unified sportsmen’s and sportswomen’s voice is imperative to counter the obstacles and raise awareness of the benefits of hunting.  Minnesota Deer Hunters Association is such a voice.

MDHA is a grassroots, democratic organization of members.  As such, elected chapter delegates and board members meet annually to discuss and vote on resolutions, position statements and pertinent issues at MDHA’s Corporate Board Meeting.  They vote based upon the update information and upon feedback from chapter members.

We strive to represent you and your hunting interests to the state legislature as well as to the state’s congressional delegation in Washington D.C. MDHA works closely with state legislators and agencies to ensure the future of deer hunting. We take positions on specific legislation and encourage passage of laws that benefit deer and deer hunting.

MDHA employs a full time lobbyist in the St. Paul to uphold MDHA members’ interests from across the state. Annually, MDHA invests about $50,000 in direct legislative  efforts.  More importantly, we inform and enable MDHA members to become involved.

MDHA’s Legislative Committee works with MDHA’s Executive Director and Lobbyist to ensure member education, member feedback and member involvement are key legislative issues.

Over the years, MDHA has contributed to various accomplishments for deer hunters including:

  • The All-Season and Multi-Zone Buck Deer Licenses
  • Allowing hunters to take one deer with archery and one with firearm
  • Changing laws to permit the DNR Commissioner to allow management deer permits, depredation permits, special hunts, etc. for deer management purposes
  • Statewide deer disease testing (CWD & TB)
  • LCMR Critical Habitat Funding
  • Institution of the LSOHC (Lessard Council)
  • Allowing the use of handguns in shotgun deer hunting zones
  • Tens of millions of dollars through bonding for WMA acquisitions
  • Institution of Heritage Enhancement Grants for use on WMA’s
  • Establishment of a Moose Advisory Committee, Moose Management Plan and Moose Biologist
  • Establishment of youth duck, deer and dove hunting seasons
  • Returning the 2nd weekend to the 3A deer season
  • Allowing use of ATV’s at any time during deer season while on your own land
  • Establishment of Youth and Firearm Deer Hunts at Camp Ripley, Whitewater State Park and many other state parks, county parks and other previously closed public lands across the state as well as hunts for disabled persons.
  • Strengthening enforcement of deer poaching regulations
  • Toughening of deer baiting regulation
  • The governor’s Omnibus Outdoor Act in 1998
  • Establishing & hosting the Annual Governor’s Deer Hunting Opener

MDHA keeps members informed through Whitetales magazine and Legislative Alert email blasts. Voicing the opinion of MDHA’s membership to state legislators has been and will continue to be important to deer hunters and MDHA. It is too important for you not to be involved.

Together in one camp, we represent the voice of the Minnesota Deer Hunter!  Join us!  Make your voice count!