TWA supports “Due Process” bill for deer breeders
An important bill supported by the Texas Wildlife Association reached the Governor's desk on May 9.
The Committee Substitute for SB 820 by Sen. Tommy Williams relates to the management, breeding, and destruction of deer and to procedures regarding certain deer permits. It is commonly referred to as the "Due Process" bill for deer breeders.
TWA supports the Committee Substitute for SB 820 and is pleased the bill has reached the Governor's desk. The bill contains agreed-to language coordinated by State Rep. Ryan Guillen, Chairman of the House Committee on Culture, Recreation, and Tourism. TWA, Texas Deer Association, and the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department supported the language of the committee substitute. TWA appreciates the leadership efforts of Chairman Guillen and his staff in crafting language that could be supported by all stakeholder entities.
TWA opposed the language in the introduced versions of SB 820 and HB 1614 by State Rep. Larry Phillips. The introduced legislation contained several areas of concern, and TWA highlighted these concerns to House and Senate committee members earlier in the session. Committee leadership recognized these concerns. All along, TWA was hopeful that improvements in procedures and due process for deer breeders could be obtained this session, and the Committee Substitute for SB 820 accomplishes this goal. It's a good bill, and its meaningful improvements are supported by TWA.
The bill provides a more objective appeal system for permit holders. The bill allows for a thorough and fair review by a district judge.
The bill requires TPWD to provide written notice in the event the department seeks to depopulate some or all of a breeder's deer herd. This gives the breeder the opportunity to seek legal counsel prior to the depopulation.
The bill allows for one-, three- and five-year deer breeder permits, instead of the current annual permit. TPWD still retains the authority to revoke breeder permits due to violations, but more defined and detailed processes are created.
You can read a pdf copy of the enrolled Committee Substitute for SB 820 at this link: http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/tlodocs/83R/billtext/pdf/SB00820F.pdf#navpanes=0