NYS Conservation Council News

From: Jim Greeley, NYSTA Delegate to the New York State Conservation Council

Fellow NYSTA members,

Many of you know me, but I know that many of you don’t, so let me introduce myself before I go any further. I have been a member of NYSTA since 1981, and a life member since 1994. I am also a life member of the NTA. I am a past region 4E director and currently serving as the County Rep for Rensselaer County as well as the NYSTA Delegate to the NYSCC.

Close to three years ago, I was asked by Mr. Tim Holt to take his place on the council’s fur resources committee. Soon after, I was appointed as NYSTA’s voting delegate to the council. Since NYSTA is an affiliate member of the NYSCC, it gives us a vote at their spring and fall meetings. This is especially important for NYSTA when and if any trapping or furbearer related issues come up. I can’t tell you how critical it is that we “have a place at the table”. If the need arises, we can also submit up to two resolutions per year for the council to consider, and the members to vote on. I want to take this opportunity to thank my longtime friend Mr. Tim Holt for his many years of dedication to preserve trapping in NY, and his years of service on the furbearer resource committee. Thank you Tim!

For more years than I care to count, there has always been a slight rift between the NYSCC and NYSTA concerning the council’s stance whenever trapping or furbearer related issues came up. It has always been NYSTA’s stance that the council should converse with NYSTA’s leadership to find out where they stand on any trapping or furbearer issues that come up, before taking a stance themselves. Being that the NYSCC and NYSTA are two of the longest running sportsman’s organizations in NY, it is imperative that we both work together. It has been my goal since being appointed as NYSTA’s delegate to achieve that end.

For the past year, I have been working hand in hand with Chuck Parker, NYSCC president on coming up with a “Letter of Understanding”, which recognizes NYSTA as one of the leading organizations in NYS where trapping is concerned. I am proud to say that on April 1st, we signed this official document. This could never have happened without the help and input from our Executive Board members, and our Executive Director, Dave Leibig. Thank you all for your help on achieving this goal.

Below is the “Letter of Understanding” that we signed on April 1st. I cannot stress enough how important it is that this is just the first step. Both organizations need to follow these guidelines and work together, instead of separately.

In addition to this “Letter of Understanding”, President Hellijas, members of the Executive Board, and myself came up with, and submitted a list of resources for the council and the furbearer resource committee to contact and use in their decision making whenever trapping related issues arise. Up until this point, the only resources listed were, the NTA, FTA, and Trapperman.com. We took extreme exception with Trapperman.com being on the list since it is nothing more than an opinion forum for trappers. It is not based on sound scientific studies. I’m glad to report that Trapperman has been removed and NYS DEC has been put in its place. The council’s website is currently being completely reconstructed and I look forward to seeing all the suggested changes put in place.

In closing, I would like to invite NYSTA members that would be interested in serving on a council committee to contact me; I would be glad to discuss that with you. We can certainly use more members on the Furbearer Resource Committee.

Yours for the future of trapping,

Jim Greeley

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