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South Dakota considers elk tag raffle for Black Hills


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The South Dakota Game and Fish Commission met last week to discuss the possibility of adding a special elk tag for the Black Hills in South Dakota. The request, which was presented via a petition to commission members in October, came from members of South Dakota Ducks Unlimited who say that creating the special raffle would provide funds for conservation projects within the state. The request was considered for a final vote late last week.

While many support the idea, saying that similar raffles have helped other big game species like bighorn sheep, others say that only the wealthy will benefit, according to the Capital Journal.

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“Only the rich will win, not fair to the fixed income folks,” wrote Dwain Hudson of Custer in a comment submitted to the commission.

According to the Capital Journal, here are the proposed rules being voted on by the commission:

  1. Establish an elk raffle license in the Black Hills elk hunting season, which would be valid in any unit where any elk license is allocated.
  2. The new elk raffle license would only be valid in hunting units within the Black Hills hunting season where any elk licenses are allocated.
  3. The new elk raffle license would not be valid in Custer State Park.
  4. The raffle license would only be available to qualifying residents.
  5. The raffle license would be available to any 501(c)3 nonprofit conservation organization that dedicates itself to wildlife management.
  6. Funds from the raffle would be held in an account that can specifically identify and track the revenue and expenditures of the raffle money to “assure funds generated are spent on wildlife management activities” that help South Dakota natural resources.

1 Comment

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Joey N. - posted 8 months ago on 11-11-2018 09:09:23 am

Kinda sounds like Dwain Hudson needs a change in attitude. The goal is to fund conservation, not pander to people on fixed income who cannot manage finances in a manner to afford the hunts they desire. Just because something doesn't seem "fair" to you doesn't mean it isn't of value. The ironic thing is that a tag like this allows for increased funding, which will often lead to increased populations and thus increased opportunity for general licenses. It is a similar argument to governor's tags or super tag raffles. There are a million and one things which are better for those who put more money forth with it, and this system as proposed actually gives people like Dwain a much higher chance of obtaining the tag than just an auction for the tag. This self-centered, rather than conservation-centered, attitude has no place in the discussion around fundraising for wildlife, which is effectively what this is. Hunters all know that the hunt isn't just about the kill or the harvest. The attitude expressed here shows that the selfishness still prevails over the desire for well funded sound management, which is unfortunate and gives the antis just one more point, while undermining the argument of "Hunters are the Strongest Conservationists"