Conservation Education Program (CEP) Funding Framework
Program is paid for by willing Users, not mandated by AZGFD.
Legislation be developed and put in statute to insure the program is permanent and focused on the intended goals of the program. This would be similar to the legislation developed for the Special Commissioners Auction permits.
Establish a committee, similar to the Habitat Partnership Committee, to administer the program. Administration should include recommending all funding expenditures, setting goals and monitoring the success in attaining those goals. Commission, Department and User
Representation is essential for complete program transparency.
Application and license fees for these permits should be set at a level lower than the current application and license fees set for the regular AZGFD permit lottery. We would recommend a fee of at least five dollars but not to exceed ten dollars for each individual application.
Taking permits from existing AZGFD recommended permits should not support the program. Instead, additional permits should be added to support the program; and these permits should not have a biological consequence to the resource.
None of the NEW special lottery permits created under this program would be like the Special Commissioners tags, which are 365 days in length. Instead, they would all be either regular established seasons like those in the hunt regulations or slightly enhanced for promotion.
The program should be built on the concept of Multiple Options for the Users in how they engage supporting the conservation education effort.
These options should be in the form of a lottery, not by creating additional auction permits.
Where possible, the CEP should coordinate with the Arizona Big Game Super Raffle, to maximize benefit and revenues of both fundraising efforts.
The CEP should not impact the current Habitat Partnership Program. Efforts to insure this will not happen should be utilized to mitigate any issues that may arise.
How many permits? We are not advocating for a specific number at this time. We do want to work with the Department and Commission to establish that number. One thing we do know is that the number will be far less than 1% of the total number of permits the AZGFD and Commission currently authorizes in its three annual drawings
Lottery Funding Options
Create a Special Super Tag
These would be few in number, not more than seven in total.
These lottery options would be made available to all of those applying online for the three annual regular AZGFD permit lotteries. At checkout, the applicant would be asked if they would like to purchase a chance for one or more of these special hunts.
This option, or similar options, have been used in other states and is very successful!
Partner with Arizona Big Game Super Raffle
We believe it would be possible to partner with the AZBGSR to increase the AZBGSR funds and establish a new funding source for the CEP
Currently the AZBGSR offers monthly incentives to get Users to buy raffle tickets. Instead of outdoor gear, it would possible to offer the opportunity for additional special tags or tag packages as an incentive for purchasing AZBGSR chances.
Partner with In-State Sportsmen’s Organizations to promote additional raffles.
Currently the Special Commissioners tags are given to applicants who qualify, for them to promote and auction or raffle. The funds raised go into the HPC program.
We believe it would be possible to do the same with special raffle tags. Sportsmen’s Conservation Organizations would be willing to apply for, promote, sell opportunities and draw winners at their annual fundraisers. These could be individual tags or tag packages.
We believe this will also increase the number of organizations involved in conservation education fundraising and reduce competition for the current Special Commissioners tags.
Special Event for Auction and Raffle Tags
We would like to suggest that an event be planned and developed to showcase Arizona’s Conservation Education program.
This would be held annually, perhaps in conjunction with some other AZGFD event.
Auction permits could be sold; raffle permits could be drawn, and it would provide an opportunity for individual SCO’s to come together and partner in support of Conservation.
We see this event as an opportunity to showcase what we do as individuals; but more importantly, collectively it shows how the Commission, Department, and Sportsmen and Women, work together for the benefit of Arizona’s wildlife.