Walker to include deer plans in budget

MADISON (AP) — Ask any Wisconsin hunter and he will likely tell you the deer herd is one of the state's best assets.

"We need the herd, we need hunting, it's not only our tradition it's economical for the state of Wisconsin, said Paul Mayer.

"We've watched a lot of the deer disappear, some have come back, but it's kind of hard to take kids and new people hunting if you sit all day and see nothing but squirrels," said Bill HIlgers.

So Governor Scott Walker said he is taking deer trustee James Kroll's advice and adding some new herd management stipulations in his upcoming budget proposal.

"Dr. Kroll and his team put a lot of time, a lot of effort into across the state talking to hunters, talking to sports men and women about what their feelings are, what they'd like to see to improve the hunt," explained Walker.

The DNR will get the money, about two million dollars, to carry out the new steps.

There are four main areas Walker hopes to cover. 

The first is what's known as a D-MAP.

"A deer management program to help put more people out into the field," said Walker.

This will allow landowners and hunting clubs to create their own "mini-hunts" after consulting with the DNR.
The second area is greater investment in new satellite mapping technology.

 "We're gonna increase and upgrade the GIS system so we can improve tracking and help hunters and others involved use new technology to improve the hunt," explained Walker.

The third is putting more resources toward fighting chronic wasting disease.

"Funding additional sources for CWD and making sure we're doing both surveillance and quicker turn around on testing," said Walker.

And finally Governor Walker's budget will include plans for the DNR to develop emergency rules to implement some of these changes for the coming hunting season.

In a statement Friday DNR Secretary Cathy Stepp said the new plan: "The report covers many aspects of deer management and will greatly change aspects of how the Department manages deer in Wisconsin. We have talented staff and dedicated partners to see implementation through."

Again, these proposals will be in the governor's budget coming out in a couple of weeks.  To put them into effect, they'll need to be approved by the Republican-controlled legislature.

Click here to read Kroll's full report


Copyright 2014 WLUK TV. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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According to the 2010 U.S. Census, Wisconsin’s population totaled 5,686,986, a 6.0% increase over the 2000 U.S. Census count of 5,363,715. (Source: Wisconsin Blue Book)
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