Experience and Expertise
All bureaucracy is notorious for doing necessary work with needless hassles. It’s true for wildlife agencies: they are at the core of American conservation success and can also be the culprits in the problems of bureaucracy.
State agencies in particular are in the middle of every fish and wildlife issue. Federal agencies typically hold limited, but often powerful, authority to coordinate or supersede the states. These include not only the Fish and Wildlife Service, but the land and water agencies such as the Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, and National Park Service.
Big differences separate State and Federal agencies. State agencies operate on a principle of pay as you go. The primary users of wildlife – hunters and anglers – pay for conservation through license fees and a long-ago, self-imposed tax on guns and ammunition, and rods and tackle and boat fuel (per the Pittman-Robertson and Dingell-Johnson Acts). These funds stay with state wildlife agencies to fund their programs. Federal agencies have limited fee programs and mostly operate on the principle of the Federal Land Management Planning Act and the National Environmental Policy Act, which like many other laws require that every Federal plan, permit, or project decision is based on a scientific analysis.
Watershed Results works closely through strong relationships with both state and Federal agencies, governors’ offices, White House level leadership, and the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, and The Wildlife Society (the professional society of wildlife biologists).