HUNTING -- As the Idaho Fish and Game Commission considers offering five additional big-game auction tags to raise money for wildlife management, the Panhandle Region has scheduled a meeting for the public to visit with an area commissioner as input is gathered.
Commissioner Brad Corkill of Cataldo will be available to talk to sportsmen at 7 p.m. on Tuesday at the Fish and Game Department's Panhandle Region office, 2885 W. Kathleen Ave., in Coeur d'Alene.
The commission is set to decide on the proposal on Thursday. An unscientific survey already has indicated that Idaho hunters would go along with the move.
Idaho Fish and Game commissioners are considering offering five additional tags for auction including one each for elk, mule deer, mountain goat, pronghorn and moose.
Since 1988, the department has been auctioning a single tag for a bighorn sheep each year. That tag sold for $90,000 last month.
In 2012, the Idaho Legislature gave the commission authority to auction up to 12 “Governor’s Wildlife Partnership” big-game tags, but the commission has not offered any tags for auction except the bighorn tag.
The commission is seeking public comment on the proposal, and the deadline for comments is at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 2.
The commission will review public comment during the meeting before voting when it meets via conference call at 7 a.m. (PST) on Thursday.
The proposed elk, mule deer, mountain goat, pronghorn and moose tags would be auctioned by nonprofit organizations dedicated to conservation. At least 95 percent of the proceeds from the tags would go to Fish and Game, which could use up to the 30 percent of the proceeds for sportsman access programs such as “Access Yes.”
The remainder would be used for wildlife habitat projects, wildlife management projects to increase the quantity and quality of big-game herds, and other research and management activities approved by the commission.