by Karen Mehall Phillips - Saturday, February 27, 2016
NRA chalked up a big win for American hunters on Feb. 26 as our collective offensive line advanced with the passage of H.R. 2406: the Sportsmen's Heritage and Recreational Enhancement (SHARE) Act. Now en route to the U.S. Senate, the NRA-supported legislation—introduced by Rep. Robert Wittman (R-VA 1)—provides enhanced access to public lands while limiting punitive regulations promoted by “animal rights” extremists.
Applauding the move from the front lines, Chris Cox, executive director of the NRA Institute for Legislative Action (ILA), explained, “The SHARE Act will strengthen America’s hunting, fishing and sport shooting heritage now and in the future. There will be more resources available for public ranges, more hunter access to public lands and more opportunities for Americans to enjoy the great outdoors.”
In fighting for sportsmen's rights, the NRA worked tirelessly with Safari Club International, the Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation and other like-minded groups to rally support for this critical legislation. Key points in the SHARE Act include:
• permitting law-abiding gun owners increased access to carry firearms on land managed by the Army Corps of Engineers;
• protecting the use of traditional ammunition;
• requiring that U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management management plans facilitate and protect opportunities to enjoy hunting, fishing and shooting--including a provision to codify an “open until closed” policy for hunter access on federal public lands.
• comprehensively addressing the interstate transportation of firearms and ammunition for law-abiding hunters and gun owners.
“On behalf of our 5 million members, we would like to thank Speaker Paul Ryan, (R-WI 1), Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA-23) and Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA 1). We also appreciate the hard work of Natural Resources Committee Chairman Rob Bishop (R-UT 1), Rules Committee Chairman Pete Sessions (R-TX 32) and the lead sponsors of the bill—Reps. Robert Wittman (R-VA 1), Tim Walz (D-MN 1), Jeff Duncan (R-SC 3) and Gene Green (D-TX 29)—on moving this legislation through the House,” concluded Cox.
The bipartisan vote puts Congress a giant step closer to enacting these much-needed, common-sense reforms. Once again, the move highlights the power of sportsmen's collective voice when we hunters and shooters take the time to contact our representatives and express our views. As the SHARE Act heads for the Senate, as previously reported on AmericanHunter.org and NRAILA.org, a similar package—the Bipartisan Sportsmen’s Act of 2015—has already advanced from the Committees on Energy and Natural Resources and Environment and Public Works.
FAST FACT: Founded in 1871, the National Rifle Association of America is the nation's oldest civil rights and sportsmen's organization. One hundred and forty-five years later—and more than five million members strong—the NRA continues to work nonstop to protect the Second Amendment and hunting rights; to push for the enforcement of existing laws against violent offenders to reduce crime; and to lead the nation in firearm safety, education and training for law-abiding gun owners, hunters, law enforcement and the armed services.
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