New Mexico Department of Game and Fish
Media contact: Dan Williams, (505) 476-8004
Public contact: (505) 476-8000
dan.williams@state.nm.us

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, AUG. 9, 2010:

DEPARTMENT SEEKS CITIZEN PARTICIPATION IN HABITAT STAMP PROGRAM

ALBUQUERQUE -- The Department of Game and Fish is seeking individuals interested in serving as advisors for the Habitat Stamp Program. Volunteer advisors review landscape plans, prioritize habitat improvement proposals and forward recommendations to the State Game Commission.

Since 1990, all anglers, hunters and trappers who use U.S. Forest Service or Bureau of Land Management lands must purchase a Habitat Stamp. The Habitat Stamp Program then uses the $5 stamp fee for on-the-ground habitat improvements.

Citizens have been involved in every aspect of the program, advising which habitats are most in need of improvement. Citizens representing sporting, environmental or public-land permittee interests meet each winter to provide input to and review habitat plans covering numerous landscapes. In spring, they reconvene to prioritize habitat proposals.  Advisors serve 3-year terms.
 
"We have five regional Citizen Advisory Committees to involve citizens early on in the project-planning process," said Dale Hall, Habitat Stamp Program manager. "What separates this program from other typical government programs is its citizen participation. Currently we are looking for volunteers to assist the Department in expanding citizen involvement into project selection and design processes at a landscape level.”

Appointed by the Game Commission, 21 current Citizen Advisory Committee members’ terms expire December 2010. Expiring terms include 15 sportsmen, three environmentalists and three permittees.  Besides meeting twice a year, they attend field tours in summer months. Participation is completely voluntary.

To volunteer, contact Dale Hall at (505) 222-4725 or dale.hall@state.nm.us for an application.  Applications are due September 10, 2010.

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