Minnesota Trappers Association
8100 Shady Trail
Breezy Point, MN 56472
MTA President’s Report
Members of the MTA:
Despite the dismal markets for wild fur at this time, I hope all of you took time to get out and enjoy the trap line this fall. We had a pretty decent one even with the cold snowy start in some parts of the state. If you are wondering what to do with your fur because of the poor markets, think about tanning it and have a clothing item made with it. Best green renewable resource out there and you can’t beat the warmth of fur for anything! Another idea would be to have donated to the tanned fur project. The MTA can always use the fur for the project to donate to worthy educators across the state for teaching youth about conservation and trapping. Whatever you decide, get out and enjoy the great outdoors and trap!
The MTA Board of Directors (BOD) had its first face to face meeting since the COVID-19 outbreak October 3, 2020 in Brainerd, MN. The meeting went well and the BOD made decisions on a variety of items. There were many topics discussed during the BOD meeting and the minutes are printed in this issue of the magazine. If you have specific questions about these don’t hesitate to contact your District director, Vice President or myself.
Several decisions made by the MTA Board of Directors that I believe the membership is particularly interested in. The MTA BOD approved offering a contract to retain a Lobbyist once again to represent the MTA down at the state capital. Tim Spreck who has served as our lobbyist in the past will be contacted to determine if he is interested in serving as our lobbyist again for this coming legislative session. A committee was appointed with District 7 Director Brian Fischer as chair to investigate and come up with proposals of ways the MTA can increase revenue to help support general expenses and programming. This would be funds not earmarked for education as our education raffle does a great job of providing adequate funding for any youth education programing we do. Brian and the committee have provided some information in this issue for members to provide feedback on. I encourage you to do so. The MTA needs to find ways to strengthen its fund accounts to help support general programs such as the convention and other areas. The BOD also voted to cancel the Winter Meeting to be held in Brainerd on January 16, 2021. Once again, this was not a lightly made decision. One of the main determining factors were restrictions that would be placed on us by the Brainerd school district. We would have been limited to the amount of people who could have attended, masks would have been mandatory, and temperatures of all attendees would have needed to be taken. Attempts were made to find another suitable location but failed due to either inadequate size or restrictions being placed due to COVID-19. At this time, the Legal Defense Fund Banquet is still on schedule to be held the evening of the 16th. Please look to the magazine for all the information on it, purchasing tickets, and rooming availability.
The legislative session will be starting soon. As the elections showed we will have our work cut out for us this year at the state capital. It will require educating new incoming legislators about trapping and its importance along with re-educating standing members. In addition, we will need to build relationships with new committee chairs in important areas such as environment and finance on both sides as these committees and others are important to helping stop bills potentially harmful to trapping from reaching a vote on the floor. The MTA will continue to pursue non-resident trapping for its members when and where it is able to. Last year before COVID-19 hit, the MTA had a non-resident bill drawn up and gotten sponsorship on the Senate side only to see this completely derailed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With new legislators coming in, The MTA will need to start this process over again to bring people on board with our goal to work for non-resident trapping in MN. Rest assured, non-resident trapping has not been forgotten and the MTA will continue to pursue it. There will be many other challenging issues for the MTA as well including maintaining the viable use of body-gripping traps and snares along with working to get a regulated wolf harvest season once again now the wolves have once more been de-listed by the USFWS. The MTA continues to be represented at the MN Wolf Roundtable to ensure trapping is a part of the final plan.
Randy Goldenman MTA’s MOHA Liaison is going to be working with the MTA to see if we can have another “Trappers Day at the Capitol.” This is a great opportunity for trappers from around the state to come to the capital in support of trapping. Details of the day, what it will entail and how you can get involved will be forthcoming. I encourage all of you when the opportunity comes to get engaged and help support your right as a trapper in this state by participating.
This year is an election year in the MTA. The President and Vice President’s position is up. I announced to the MTA BOD at our fall meeting that I will not be seeking re-election. I want to encourage everyone to think about nominating someone for one of these positions. The nominations can be sent to our MTA Editor, Shawn Johnson. Nominations received will be printed in the MTA magazine if the person excepts the nomination. Deadline for nominations is February 10th, 2021 the next deadline for submissions to the magazine.
With Christmas right around the corner at the time of this printing, I offer up the idea of an MTA membership to that loved one or friend as a great Christmas present. The MTA magazine as well as the Trappers Post comes with the membership along with all other benefits awarded a member most importantly having the MTA help to retain your rights to trap in the state. You can find an application right in the magazine and Membership Coordinators Jesse and Beau Vivant will take good care of you making sure you get all of your membership benefits.
If you don’t have anyone you can give a new membership to, consider sending in for a supporting member patch. Details on how you can get one are found right here in the magazine. You get a beautiful patch and all the proceeds go to help support legal defense of trapping in the state of MN. I want to thank Leon and Denise Windschitl for their work and support of this program on behalf of the MTA. Thanks, your help is greatly appreciated!
If you have questions or concerns, contact me. You can reach me at email@example.com or at 218-52-4050. I will do my best to answer them for you.
Thank you for your continued support and Together we stand-