Anyone who watched or participated in the FWP committee meeting on HB 505 last week had to be amazed at the people who introduced the bill, those who showed up as proponents, and the opponent’s logical arguments.
First Rep. Wylie Galt spoke, then WFP Director Hank Worsech, then Chief of staff, Quentin Kujala. By now everyone probably knows the specific bill details. What really stood out was while Worsech and Kujala were explaining the bill, Galt was standing in the doorway right behind them. Evidently he was making sure they said what they were supposed to say. Disgusting.
Then the proponents spoke. These proponents were the same proponents who appear every legislative session when there is an opportunity to profit from the public, be it wildlife, water, public lands or anything they can profit from. They have no qualms about getting right up to the front of that line to the public trough.
The opponents laid out just what this bill would do to Montana, particularly hunters and they did a great job. What is absolutely disgusting about the event is that the committee did not table this bill. What it really demonstrates is that the current far right Republican Party in Montana will vote however they are instructed to, the public be damned.
Montana sportsmen have to get together and find a way to stop HB 505. Legislators may try amendments but watch out. When the words collaborate or compromise come up, if we are not careful, we will lose. The proponents have nothing to lose, and everything to gain. The opponents, (public) has nothing to gain, and everything to lose. There can be no win, win solution.