Week of October 17, 2011

Beyond the Great Lakes
National

Regional

Veterans Issues
General
2nd Amendment issues

Illinois
Indiana
Michigan
New York
Pennsylvania
Other Breaking News Items

 

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Beyond the Great Lakes

Asian carp caught in North Dakota

North Dakota wildlife officials say an Asian carp species has been caught on the James River. State Game and Fish spokesman Lynn Schlueter says the silver carp was caught near LaMoure, in southeast North Dakota. Wildlife officials are disappointed but not surprised that silver carp have entered the state. Schlueter says silver carp have migrated upstream on the James River through South

Dakota in recent years.

 

“We know that one fish has been caught,” said Brandon Kratz fisheries biologist for Game and Fish at Jamestown. “We’ll know more after we do electro fishing to determine the concentration.” Kratz speculated that the high water in the James River this summer may have made it easier for the silver carp to migrate upstream.


Louisiana wildlife officer killed

Paul Stuckey, 47, an 18-year veteran agent with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, was shot and killed after responding to a call of night hunting. His body was found by a fisherman on the banks of the Mississippi River near St. Francisville.

DWF Secretary Bob Barham said Stuckey received a call of night hunting sometime after midnight near St. Francisville.  ''He sent a text to his supervisor to let him know that he was going on the call and that was the last communication until he was found," Barham said. Stuckey leaves behind a wife and three children.


Animal activists block Oregon F&W offices

About a dozen people from the Portland Animal Defense League put horseshoe-shaped bicycle locks around their necks and through door handles, blocking entry to the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife building. Protestors held signs and chanted through bullhorns against the decision to kill two wolves responsible for

killing livestock.

 

According to a press release from Fish and Wildlife, the decision was made after a confirmed calf killing, the 14th confirmed livestock loss this year by members of the pack. Two of the protestors were arrested on charges of disorderly conduct and criminal trespass.


Pork Choppers shoot feral pigs

Michigan lists them as invasive species

The U.S. has a wild pig problem in search of solutions. One getting the green light from Texas state officials is helicopter hunting. Texas has declared October “Get the Hogs Outta Texas” month allowing Lone Star State “pork-choppers” to target feral pigs through 2011.

 

Michigan, on October 10 issued a statement listing sporting swine as invasive species.  “Absent a regulatory program in Michigan law for sporting swine facilities, the invasive species order is being put into effect,” said DNR Director Rodney Stokes.  Stokes said active enforcement of the invasive species order will not start prior to April 1, 2012,

 

Not so different from extreme sports like heli-skiing and

heli-hiking, helicopter hunting expeditions or "aerial 

deprivation" missions to slim down wild boar populations may be the latest trend in hunting.  And in Texas, which has made it legal to for the public to hunt wild hog from low-flying helicopters, it’s open-season all year 'round.

 

Lone Star State politicians decided to step it up and lift a ban from shooting animals from helicopters.  This year they've given the green light for helicopters or “pork-choppers,” to enhance the effort, from Oct. 1 through Dec. 31. And hunters are ponying up big bucks -- about $500 an hour -- for the privilege of participating.

 

Texas pigs are prolific -- reproducing every 115 days with up to 12 in a litter. Experts say shooting even 60 of them will only maintain the current population in Texas where they range from 2.6 to 3.9 million.


National

Sonar-equipped robo-kayak patrols Welland Canal for carp

Canadian scientists are launching a robotic kayak equipped with echo sounder sensors in the Welland Canal this week to see if invasive fish such as the Asian carp could travel between Lake Ontario and Lake Erie.  Some scientists say it’s only a matter of time before Asian carp arrive in the Great Lakes. They worry that the ravenous fish will out-compete native species for food.

 

The Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal, which links the Mississippi River basin to the Great Lakes basin, gets much of the attention as a potential entry point for invading carp. Resource managers have focused prevention efforts there.  But other invasion routes need to be monitored, too, said Becky Cudmore, a senior science adviser with Fisheries and Oceans Canada, a federal agency.   “If we’re just focused on our front door and it sneaks in through our back door, we’re in trouble,” she said.

 

Many invasive species, such as sea lamprey, have slipped through the Welland Canal, where locks lift ships around Niagara Falls into Lake Erie, said Scott Milne, principal of Milne Technologies in Peterborough, Ontario. That gains them access to the upper Great Lakes from the east, but no one has yet proven that a lunker like the Asian carp would swim through this vulnerable passageway.

 

Because of heavy ship traffic, scientists aren’t allowed to enter the lock chambers with boats and nets to survey how fish move in the canal, Milne said.  His robo-kayak, dubbed the “Waterbug,” is ideal for the job since it is unobtrusive and crewless.  Powered by a 12-volt battery that runs two small motors mounted on either side of the 14 foot hull, the Waterbug can turn on a dime in response to radioed commands from onshore operators.

 

In real time, the kayak’s echo-sounders send acoustic images to a laptop computer that estimates the size of fish and pinpoints their movements. A fish as large as the Asian carp would produce a unique echo, Milne said.  “The idea is to use the echo sounder to see where fish are in the system, then follow up with a camera that takes acoustic images that show distinctive features such as fins,” he said

 

The sensors can even be tuned to track tiny invasive zooplankton.

 

Milne and his partners at Fisheries and Oceans Canada hope the pilot survey of the canal will help measure the risk of passage by Asian carp and inform officials whether and where barriers are needed. And they’ll keep an eye out

for other invaders.  Milne doesn’t expect to find Asian carp

this year.  But if his team finds common carp in the canal, it raises suspicions that Asian carp are also capable of navigating the locks.

 

The kayak launched from near St. Catharines, Ontario, will complete the survey by mid to late October. The Waterbug will cruise about 26 miles from Lake Ontario to Lake Erie through lock chambers and intervening waters.  “It’s possible to program the Waterbug to run autonomously for 24 hours surveying a system,” Milne said.

 

Depending on how the Waterbug performs, it could be used for monitoring the effectiveness of such hurdles as the electric barrier in the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal, according to Phil Moy, an invasive species specialist with Wisconsin Sea Grant.

 

Cudmore co-authored a 2004 risk assessment that concluded there is a high probability that Asian carp could become established in the southern Great Lakes basin and have a significant impact on the ecosystem.   The most likely route of entry to the Saint Lawrence Seaway and Lake Ontario is through the live fish trade, Cudmore said.  Live carp are prized in the Greater Toronto Area where fish markets sold over 100,000 kg of Asian carp, much of it still alive, in 2003.

 

Unfortunately, people buy fish at the market and then release them.  “Individual Asian carp have been found in a tributary of Lake Ontario and in a fountain in downtown Toronto,” said John Cooper, a spokesperson for the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources.  In 2005, Ontario banned the possession and sale of live Asian carp.  The U.S. ban on transporting live Asian carp across state lines went into effect March 22.

 

Over the past year, the Ministry of Natural Resources has partnered with the Canadian Border Services to intercept three shipments of live Asian carp.  A Canadian judge slapped one importer with a fine of $20,000 for a 6,000 pound shipment of carp and fined a repeat offender $50,000 for a 4,000 pound shipment.  The third case is still before the courts.

 

Imported in the 1960s and 70s to control algae in catfish farms in the southern U.S., Asian carp grow up to 4 feet long and weigh more than 100 pounds.  The carp invaded the Mississippi River basin in the early 1990s through accidental and intentional releases, Moy said.

 

Leaping Asian carp have inflicted broken bones and concussions when they land on boaters, Moy said.  The ravenous fish has likely out-competed native filter-feeding species in the Mississippi River ecosystem.   “In some parts of the Mississippi River, nine out of every 10 fish caught are Asian carp,” Cudmore said.


Weber new NE Regional Director for the USFWS

USFWS Service Director Dan Ashe named Wendi Weber as the new Regional Director for the Service’s Northeast Region. Weber, a 13-year career Service employee, has served as Deputy Regional Director for the region since 2007.

 

In her new capacity as Regional Director, Weber will oversee Service activities in the 13-state Northeast Region, which ranges from Maine to Virginia. From the regional office in Hadley, Mass,  she will lead more than 900 Service employees working in more than 130 field offices across a region ranging from Aroostook National Wildlife Refuge in northern Maine to the Southwestern Virginia Field Office in Abingdon.

“Wendi Weber is a dynamic and passionate leader who has continually proven her ability to work with others to achieve great things for conservation.

 

As Deputy Regional Director, Weber oversaw the day-to-day operations of the region, coordinating and directing activities to ensure compliance with legal, regulatory, and

Departmental policies. She also advised and consulted

with members of Congress, the Office of Management and Budget, the Office of the Secretary, and other Federal and State agencies and Departmental Bureaus on matters pertaining to Service programs.

 

Prior to coming to the Northeast Region, Weber served as Assistant Regional Director for Ecological Services in the Service’s Midwest Region in Minneapolis from 2004 to 2007. From 2002 to 2004, Weber served as Chief of Endangered Species in the Service’s Northwest Region, based in Portland, Ore. She also worked for the Service’s endangered species and international affairs programs in Washington, D.C., for three years.

 

Prior to joining the Service in 1998, Weber worked for the states of Florida and Georgia as a field biologist. She lives in Hadley with her husband Jon and sons, Bailey, 14, and Clayton, 12. Originally from Rochester, New York, Weber has a bachelor’s degree in zoology from the University of Rhode Island and a master’s degree in fisheries from the University of Georgia.

 


House warned against “EPA Power Grab of Breathtaking Proportions”
Expert testifies before House Committee on New Vehicle Energy Mandates
Washington, DC, October 12, –  In the aftermath of a recent deal between the Obama administration and automakers to force higher fuel economy standards on “light duty vehicles,” the House Oversight and Government Reform chaired by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) is holding a hearing to question the Environmental Protection Agency’s decision to impose those costly new standards.

“The Environmental Protection Agency is carrying out a power grab of breathtaking proportions,” said CEI Senior Fellow Marlo Lewis, in written testimony submitted to the subcommittee on Regulatory Affairs, Stimulus Oversight and Government Spending.

EPA is regulating fuel economy and determining national policy on climate change. EPA claims that in doing so it is merely implementing the Clean Air Act. But, Lewis notes in his testimony, the Clean Air Act was enacted in 1970, “almost two decades before global warming emerged as a public concern and five years before Congress enacted the nation’s first fuel economy statute.

“The Clean Air Act was neither designed nor intended to regulate greenhouse gases, and it provides no authority to regulate fuel economy,” said Lewis.

Lewis’s testimony develops the following points:

►If packaged into a bill, EPA’s fuel economy/greenhouse gas regulations would be dead on arrival. That’s after almost two decades of global warming advocacy. There is no plausibility Congress signed off on EPA’s greenhouse agenda in 1970.

►EPA cannot regulate greenhouse gas emissions from motor vehicles without implicitly – and obviously – 

regulating fuel economy, because carbon dioxide (CO2)constitutes almost 95% of motor vehicle greenhouse gas emissions, and the only technologies that can reduce vehicular CO2 emissions are fuel-saving technologies.

►Congress, however, delegated the responsibility to regulate fuel economy to another agency, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), under a separate statute, the Energy Policy Conservation Act (EPCA). EPA’s actions are inconsistent with the statutory scheme Congress created.

►To preempt auto industry opposition to its power grab, EPA pursued a strategy of regulatory extortion, confronting auto companies with the economically ruinous prospect of a market-balkanizing “regulatory patchwork” if they did not waive their right to sue EPA.

►EPA created the patchwork threat by reconsidering California’s request for a waiver allowing states to implement their own greenhouse gas/fuel economy programs. EPA did this even though EPCA expressly prohibits states from adopting laws or regulations “related to” fuel economy.

►The May 2009 “historic agreement” between the White House and the auto industry recognizing EPA’s new role as fuel economy regulator was conducted behind closed doors, under strict orders to “put nothing in writing, ever,” thereby flouting federal standards for transparency and accountability in rulemaking.

►The Obama administration’s latest agreement with automakers, establishing a fuel economy target of 54.5 mpg by 2025, was also a closed-door proceeding and similarly tainted.
 

Currently, no vehicles except plug-ins or battery electric cars meet that standard.  The new CAFE standards will add over $3,000 to the cost of an average vehicle in 2025, according to government estimates.  The actual cost could be even higher.

View the testimony by Marlo Lewis, Jr.


Firearms Interstate Commerce Reform Act

Allows for the interstate sale of firearms

WASHINGTON - Recognizing the need to revamp outdated and restrictive gun laws, U.S Senators Mark Begich (D-Alaska) and Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) have introduced the Firearms Interstate Commerce Reform Act. The bill allows for the interstate sale of firearms and removes several antiquated and unnecessary restrictions imposed on interstate firearms transactions.

 

“Utahns and Americans everywhere have a right to bear arms, and this legislation ensures that onerous and outdated restrictions on everyone’s Second Amendment rights are no longer in place,” Sen. Hatch said. “By removing these restrictions, we can ensure that the constitutional freedoms we seek to protect remain intact.”

 

“Current laws restricting interstate commerce of firearms not only lag behind common sense and new technology, they are unfair and burdensome,” Sen. Begich said. “This legislation cleans up decades-old laws that are unnecessarily restricting the rights of Alaskans and other Americans to purchase and sell firearms.”

 

“The National Instant Criminal Background Check System has made many restrictions enacted in 1968 obsolete.  It’s time to bring the law into the 21 st century. This important legislation will modernize and streamline interstate firearms transactions. The NRA and gun owners across the nation thank Senators Hatch and Begich for their leadership on this issue,” said Chris W. Cox, executive director of the NRA Institute for Legislative Action.

 

The Firearms Interstate Commerce Reform Act removes a number of restrictions from the Gun Control Act of 1968, which only allowed licensed dealers to sell rifles and shot guns to residents of a different state under a lengthy series

 

of conditions. The restrictions were supposed to prevent buyers from evading “background checks” available at the time, which were mainly carried out through state laws requiring local police chiefs to issue firearms permits.

 

However, since 1998, all people buying firearms from dealers in the U.S. have been subject to computerized background checks under the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System; a system much more sophisticated and advanced than what was available in 1968. As a result, the complex system of state laws currently restricting the interstate commerce of firearms is outdated. In some cases, current law requires citizens to jump through so many hoops, it hinders or even prevents these sales.

 

The new law would allow:

►Individuals to buy handguns, as well as rifles or shotguns, from licensed dealers in another state, subject to the background check requirement. The buyer and dealer would still have to meet in person and comply with the laws of both states;

►Dealers to engage in their business at gun shows in other states, complying with the laws in the state of gun show;

 

The bill would reduce theft and loss of firearms during shipment between dealers by getting rid of a provision that says dealers may not transfer firearms to one another face to face, away from their business premises. Currently, dealers who agree on a sale are forced to return to their businesses and ship firearms to one another which involves some risk of theft or loss. The new law would allow an in-person exchange.

 

Similar legislation has been introduced in the House.


Wild Game Donation Act
Alaskan Congressman Don Young has introduced H.R. 3142, The Wild Game Donation Act.

 

This bill would make hunters who donate meat to food based charities eligible for a tax deduction for the 

processing cost of their wild game. Additionally, this legislation would provide a tax credit for processors who take part in this program. H.R. 3142 requires that all animals are killed in accordance with state and local laws and by the individual making the charitable contribution.


Regional

Special event in Erie, PA on wind energy

The movie WINDFALL will be shown at the Erie County Blasco Public Library-Hirt Auditorium on Sunday November 6, 2011 at 2:00 pm.  It will be FREE to the public.  This award winning documentary film by director Laura Israel provides the public with accurate information on industrial wind turbine energy as it depicts the Town of Meredith, NY and an Irish wind turbine energy developer that came calling.

 

The film is 83 minutes long and there will be a very short introduction of the film and no discussion in the auditorium afterward.  There is a possibility of a representative of the Chautauqua County Citizens for Responsible Wind Power

may be available in the lobby after the movie to provide an update on the status Ripley-Westfield, NY wind project and nearby Chautauqua County projects.

 

This movie is very relevant to what is happening in the Erie, PA region concerning proposed industrial wind turbine projects.  Erie and Warren Counties in PA both have large industrial wind turbine (IWT) projects in the planning stage with more to come.  The adjoining counties of Ashtabula, Ohio and Chautauqua, New York also have industrial wind turbine projects in various stages of development.  Large IWT projects for offshore in Lake Erie are being planned and proposed for both the Canadian and United States sides of the Lake.


Great Lakes Water Levels for Oct 14, 2011 

WEATHER CONDITIONS

Following a gorgeous weekend, many locations across the Great Lakes basin received decent amounts of rainfall this week. Cooler conditions were also recorded, but temperatures for the most part remained above seasonal averages. To date in October, all of the Great Lakes have recorded lower than average precipitation. Looking ahead, a return to more seasonal temperatures is expected this weekend. Scattered showers are also possible in many locations.

LAKE LEVEL CONDITIONS

Currently, Lake Superior and Lake Michigan are both similar to their levels of a year ago. Lakes St. Clair and Erie are 5 and 10 inches, respectively higher than they were at this time last year, and Lake Ontario is 1 inch above last year's level. Over the next thirty days, Lake Superior is projected to drop 1 inch from its current level, and Lake Michigan-Huron is expected to fall 2 inches. The water levels of Lakes St. Clair, Erie and Ontario are forecasted to decline 6, 6, and 4 inches, respectively, over the next month.

FORECASTED MONTHLY OUTFLOWS/CHANNEL CONDITIONS

Lake Superior's outflow through the St. Mary's River is projected to be below average for the month of October. The outflows from Lake Huron into the St. Clair River, and from Lake St. Clair into the Detroit River, are also expected to be below average throughout the month of October.

Lake Erie's outflow through the Niagara River and the outflow of Lake Ontario into the St. Lawrence River are both predicted to be above average over the next month.

ALERTS

Lake Superior's water level is currently below chart datum (CD) and expected to remain below CD through the next several months. Users of the Great Lakes, connecting channels and St. Lawrence River should keep informed of current conditions before undertaking any activities that could be affected by changing water levels. Mariners should utilize navigation charts and refer to current water level readings.

 

 

Superior

Mich-Huron

St. Clair

Erie

Ontario

Level for Oct 14

601.05

577.66

574.15

571.72

244.91

Datum, in ft

601.10

577.50

572.30

569.20

243.30

Diff in inches

-1

+2

+22

+30

+19

Diff last month

-2

-2

-4

-2

-5

Diff from last yr

0

0

+5

+10

+1


Veterans Issues

Find Military Friendly jobs

www.military.com/veteran-jobs

Besides offering critical information to service members and veterans, Military.com also offers a job search for veterans.

 

Military.com's free membership connects service members, military families and veterans to all the benefits

of service — government benefits, scholarships, discounts, lifelong friends, mentors, great stories of military life or

missions, and much more.  Military.com members share stories, insider tips, news from the front lines, and unique slices of military life including the tough stuff of war.  Military.com provides headline news and technology updates since our community answers the call and makes news.


General

Sport angler decline

The number of U. S. sportfishing participants declined by 10 % between 2006 and 2010, and most of the drop was between 2009 and 2010. In 2006 there were 49.7 million participants. A prdoject of the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation, the Outdoor Industry Association

conducted 38,742 online interviews with individuals and families. Other conclusions: males constitute 68.2 % of total participants. The seven seaside states of the South Atlantic region have the most anglers of any region, 18.4 percent of the total.


 

Illinois solution to Asian Carp: just eat 'em

Asian carp numbers are soaring. Illinois is ground zero in the battle to manage the rapidly populating invasive from China. Now Illinois is partnering with a couple of big name chefs from Louisiana to get people to serve Asian carp. "We’ve got to show people that this fish tastes good. It can be worked with preparation wise, and this fish can be very servable and very edible in every capacity," said Travis Loyd, deputy director of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. Louisiana chefs Philippe Parola and Tim Creehan are on the case. Parola insists the fish is just as good looking as a salmon or a lake trout. "So quit calling it ugly because it's not ugly," he said.

 

The Asian carp, a species of fish brought from China to the U.S. several decades ago, is a growing concern in the midwest state of Illinois.  The number of Asian carp in the state’s waterways has soared in recent years, choking out many native fish species.  But state officials hope to solve the problem, and also strike a blow against local hunger, by changing public attitudes about the much-maligned fish.

 

Asian carp found in the Illinois River are large, much too plentiful, and, says  Travis Loyd, deputy director of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. "It’s ugly.  The fish is predominantly not a pretty fish," he said.

 

Parola and fellow chef Tim Creehan are teaming up with Illinois state officials in a campaign to whet the public's appetite for the Asian carp. "It’s very palatable and very pleasing when you taste it," he said.

 

"We’ve got to show people that this fish tastes good.  It can be worked with preparation wise, and this fish can be very servable and very edible in every capacity," said Loyd.

 

Asian carp is widely consumed in China, but most fish-eaters in the United States avoid it because they confuse it with native carp. These fish are bottom-feeders that many people believe are contaminated by toxic pollutants, including mercury.  But Asian carp, which are not really carp at all, feed on plankton and algae near the surface of rivers and lakes.  That is why they're often seen jumping out of the water.

 

Travis Loyd says Asian carp is a clean fish, with low levels of mercury, that’s safe to eat. "We’ve tested it - the levels are in most cases nil, and it is the safest fish," he said.

 

Another reason many Americans avoid eating Asian carp is that it is bony, difficult to fillet and hard to sell in fresh fish markets.  But Chef Creehan says when the fish is cooked the bones come out easily, enabling food processors to package it as a ready-to-serve product. 

 

Better still, says Creehan: Asian carp is cheap. "The average price per pound of ocean fish is $6 a pound (or about $13 per kilogram) whole.  This is looking at 12 to 20 cents (per pound, or about 26 to 40 cents per kilogram).  So this is so affordable," he said.

 

 


Indiana angler wins Chicago Carp Classic

Professional fishing tournaments are big in America but now there's a new kind of fishing tournament, a different kind that is slowly catching on, no thanks to misguided introductions– the carp tournament. 

 

Amos Behanna, an Indiana angler was crowned Chicago Carp King with a 22.7 lb carp, using his private bait reciepe during the Chicago Carp Classic.

Forty nine anglers participated in the September 10, 2011 Chicago Carp Classic, the premier event for the nation-wide Carp Anglers Group. This year's event was held on the Chicago Lakefront at Montrose Harbor . The tournament is conducted in conjunction with the club’s annual meeting and draws anglers from across the country as well as from other countries.

 

 


Company admits guilt in Insurance Fraud in tragedy of Ethan Allen

In October 2005, the Ethan Allen cruise boat took 47 passengers on a scenic cruise of Lake George (New York) to view the autumn colors.  The captain, Richard Paris, saw a large wake of another boat approach the Ethan Allen and turned the boat sharply causing the passengers to all be scooted along the benches to one side of the boat.  The wake and the rapid shift in the boat's center of gravity caused the boat to quickly capsize.  Twenty of the 47 passengers, all elderly, drown in the accident.

 

For such tragedies, companies purchase insurance to protect their business and provide some compensation to those injured/killed.  The owner of the Ethan Allen, Shoreline Cruises, Inc., purchased a policy from the company owned by Christopher Purser of Houston, TX. 

 

Shoreline paid its premiums and when the accident occurred they immediately went to Purser to report the incident and state their claim.  According to prosecutors, the sinking of the Ethan Allen gave rise to substantial claims against the insurance policy.  In response, Purser presented backdated documents to make it appear, falsely, that the policy did not cover the Ethan Allen while the boat was operating on Lake George.

 

In fact, Shoreline Cruises Inc. had purchased exactly that type of coverage.  With further digging, it was found that Purser's company was nothing but a shell company with no assets to cover any insurance claims.  Federal prosecutors found other bogus insurance policies issued

by Purser on apartment complexes, condominium

associations, bars and restaurants.

 

On October 5,, Christopher Purser pled guilty to insurance fraud in a Houston federal court and could face 20 years in prison.  Three other people have been charged and their trial is scheduled to begin later this month.  Purser is expected to testify in that trial against the others involved.

 

The families of the lost victims and injured victims are now looking to the State of New York for compensation.  Having settled with Shoreline Cruises, the captain of the Ethan Allen and owners of the boat (Mohican) that was believed to have caused the huge wake, the victims are now looking to deeper pockets for compensation....The State of New York.  An appeals court in New York said that the case against the state can proceed. 

 

The state, the victims say, was responsible for the inspection of the boat and certified that it could carry 48 passengers (there were 47 on board).  Something went wrong and a jury may have to decide if it was the fault of the boat, the captain or the wake.  Whatever the outcome, the insurance fraud committed by Mr. Purser has exacerbated the resolution of this tragedy that is now 6 years old.

 

If you are a business owner, make sure your policy maker is legit.  This case shows the many unintended consequences of fraud.  Victims are now seeking justice and Purser is going to pay with years in prison.  Purser will find few sympathizers for his actions.


Think about your charitable donations

As you open your pockets for the next natural disaster, please keep these facts in mind: 

 

The American Red Cross President and CEO Marsha J. Evans salary for the year was $651,957 plus expenses.  The United Way President Brian Gallagher receives a $375,000 base salary along with numerous expense benefits.

 

UNICEF CEO Caryl M. Stern receives $1,200,000 per year (100k per month) plus all expenses including a ROLLS ROYCE.  Less than 5 cents of your donated dollar goes to the cause!

 

The Salvation Army's Commissioner Todd Bassett receives a salary of only $13,000 per year (plus housing) for managing this $2 billion dollar organization.  96 % of donated dollars go to the cause!

 

The American Legion National Commander receives  

a $0.00 zero salary.

Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!

 

The Veterans of Foreign Wars National Commander receives a $0.00 zero salary. 

Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!

 The Disabled American Veterans National Commander receives a $0.00 zero salary. 

Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!

 

The Military Order of Purple Hearts National Commander receives a $0.00 zero salary. 

Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!

 

The Vietnam Veterans Association National Commander receives a $0.00 zero salary. 

Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!

 


Tips on Firearm Safety

The basic safety rules for dealing with firearms have not changed.

  • Treat every weapon as if it is loaded.

  • Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to fire;

  • Never point at anything you do not intend to shoot;

  • Always keep the weapon unloaded until you are ready to fire.

  • Alcohol and weapons are the same deadly combination as alcohol and driving--they do not mix.


 

2nd Amendment issues

City restrictions on gun ranges may violate Second Amendment: Judge

(CN) - Chicago's restrictions on gun ranges, implemented in the wake of a landmark Supreme Court decision striking down the city's handgun ban, may violate the Second Amendment, a federal judge ruled.

 

The Supreme Court struck down Chicago's de-facto ban on handgun possession on June 28, 2010, holding that the Second Amendment also applies to the states.   Afterward, the city passed a new gun ordinance it said complied with the decision. The new law permitted handgun possession for people who attend a gun range for training, but banned publicly accessible gun ranges within the city limits.

  

Rhonda Ezell sued the city, alleging that the ordinance's ban on firing ranges was unconstitutional and sought a preliminary injunction against it. The court denied the motion, ruling that gun owners' rights were not burdened by having to travel to one of 14 firing ranges located within 50 miles of the city limits. Ezell appealed this ruling.

    

Then on July 6, 2011, the Chicago City Council allowed firing ranges to operate in the city, subject to restrictions, by deleting the offending section of the ordinance. One hour before the council changed the law, however, the 7th Circuit granted Ezell's earlier request for an injunction with an emergency reversal ruling.

    

The city moved to dismiss the case as moot, asserting that the council had given Ezell all the relief she sought. But Ezell claimed that the city's new web of restrictions on firing ranges effectively operates as a new ban on gun

ranges.

 

U.S. District Judge Virginia Kendall refused to dismiss, saying the case is not moot because it is unclear whether the amended statute will end the city's discrimination.

    

Citing the 7th Circuit's opinion, which granted Ezell's motion for preliminary injunction, the court said that the right to possess firearms "implies a corresponding right to acquire and maintain proficiency in their use. The core right wouldn't mean much without the training and practice that make it effective."

 

The federal appeals court had also noted that the injunction should prohibit the city "from using its zoning code to exclude firing ranges from locating anywhere in the city."

    

Kendall said that "the new ordinance undoubtedly burdens anyone trying to open or use a firing range."  "Consequently, whether the new ordinance's restrictions are so burdensome as to effectively ban firing ranges or invade an individual's Second Amendment rights is an issue that must be hashed out in litigation," she concluded.

 

As such, the court wants further evidence before determining whether the requirement that gun ranges be in "certain types of zones and 1,000 feet from residential areas, churches and liquor stores leaves any areas for gun ranges."

 

Ezell must file her amended complaint by Oct. 15, 2011

 


Illinois

Indiana angler wins Chicago Carp Classic

Professional fishing tournaments are big in America but now there's a new kind of fishing tournament, a different kind that is slowly catching on, no thanks to misguided introductions– the carp tournament. 

 

Amos Behanna, an Indiana angler was crowned Chicago Carp King with a 22.7 lb carp, using his private bait reciepe during the Chicago Carp Classic.

Forty nine anglers participated in the September 10, 2011 Chicago Carp Classic, the premier event for the nation-wide Carp Anglers Group. This year's event was held on the Chicago Lakefront at Montrose Harbor . The tournament is conducted in conjunction with the club’s annual meeting and draws anglers from across the country as well as from other countries.

 

 


City restrictions on gun ranges may violate Second Amendment: Judge

(CN) - Chicago's restrictions on gun ranges, implemented in the wake of a landmark Supreme Court decision striking down the city's handgun ban, may violate the Second Amendment, a federal judge ruled.

 

The Supreme Court struck down Chicago's de-facto ban on handgun possession on June 28, 2010, holding that the Second Amendment also applies to the states.   Afterward, the city passed a new gun ordinance it said complied with the decision. The new law permitted handgun possession for people who attend a gun range for training, but banned publicly accessible gun ranges within the city limits.

  

Rhonda Ezell sued the city, alleging that the ordinance's ban on firing ranges was unconstitutional and sought a preliminary injunction against it. The court denied the motion, ruling that gun owners' rights were not burdened by having to travel to one of 14 firing ranges located within 50 miles of the city limits. Ezell appealed this ruling.

    

Then on July 6, 2011, the Chicago City Council allowed firing ranges to operate in the city, subject to restrictions, by deleting the offending section of the ordinance. One hour before the council changed the law, however, the 7th Circuit granted Ezell's earlier request for an injunction with an emergency reversal ruling.

    

The city moved to dismiss the case as moot, asserting that the council had given Ezell all the relief she sought. But Ezell claimed that the city's new web of restrictions on firing ranges effectively operates as a new ban on gun

ranges.

 

U.S. District Judge Virginia Kendall refused to dismiss, saying the case is not moot because it is unclear whether the amended statute will end the city's discrimination.

    

Citing the 7th Circuit's opinion, which granted Ezell's motion for preliminary injunction, the court said that the right to possess firearms "implies a corresponding right to acquire and maintain proficiency in their use. The core right wouldn't mean much without the training and practice that make it effective."

    

Ezell must file her amended complaint by Oct. 15, 2011

 

The federal appeals court had also noted that the injunction should prohibit the city "from using its zoning code to exclude firing ranges from locating anywhere in the city."

    

Kendall said that "the new ordinance undoubtedly burdens anyone trying to open or use a firing range."  "Consequently, whether the new ordinance's restrictions are so burdensome as to effectively ban firing ranges or invade an individual's Second Amendment rights is an issue that must be hashed out in litigation," she concluded.

 

As such, the court wants further evidence before determining whether the requirement that gun ranges be in "certain types of zones and 1,000 feet from residential areas, churches and liquor stores leaves any areas for gun ranges."

 


Indiana

Landowners can partner with hunters to control deer

Landowners experiencing deer damage to crops, forest regeneration or landscaping can get help from hunters in protecting their property through the DNR’s Hunters Helping Farmers program.

 

In order to minimize such damage, the DNR Division of Fish & Wildlife recommends that such landowners start a hunting program during the regular deer hunting seasons, which are quickly approaching. Archery season has already begun, and firearms season begins Nov. 12.

Each district DNR wildlife biologist maintains a list, by county, of deer hunters who want to participate in the program. Landowners having difficulty finding hunters may contact their district’s biologist for a copy. Contact info: www.wildlife.IN.gov/2716.htm

 

A helpful Hunting Permission Form for landowners to use is available at www.in.gov/dnr/fishwild/2343.htm by scrolling to General Hunting Regulations and clicking on “Trespassing” at the bottom of the page. For more information on managing deer: www.hunting.IN.gov.

 


Michigan

DNR Order list Sporting Swine as Invasive Species

A Department of Natural Resources director’s order listing sporting swine as an invasive species took effect over the weekend on Oct. 8, making it illegal to possess the animals in Michigan.  “Absent a regulatory program in Michigan law for sporting swine facilities, the invasive species order is being put into effect,” said DNR Director Rodney Stokes.

 

Stokes said active enforcement of the invasive species order will not start prior to April 1, 2012, with compliance visits to swine shooting and breeding facilities planned after that date.

 

Sporting swine facilities can use the next six months to schedule hunts to reduce the population of sporting swine

on their properties. Facilities still in possession of sporting swine on April 1, 2012, may face violations and fines.

 

The DNR acted to list sporting swine as an invasive species to help stop the spread of invasive swine across the State to eliminate the disease risk they pose to humans, domestic pigs and wildlife, and to prevent damage to agricultural and other lands. The state is working with the U.S. Department of Agriculture to eradicate feral swine. Legislation was also passed last year allowing people with any valid hunting license to shoot feral swine on public land and on private land with the permission of the landowner.

 

For more information on feral swine in Michigan, go to www.michigan.gov/feralswine.


New York

Early Bow Season in Southern Zone begins October 15

Hunters Also Reminded: New Antler Restriction Law in Part of the Catskills

The 2011-2012 Southern Zone bowhunting season and Northern Zone muzzleloader season for deer and bear begin at sunrise on Saturday, October 15. The Southern Zone includes most of upstate New York outside of the Northern Zone, except for Westchester County. The Northern Zone, generally includes the Adirondacks, the Tug Hill Plateau, the eastern Lake Ontario plain, and the Champlain and St. Lawrence valleys.

 

“The early seasons are a great time to be in the woods,” said Commissioner Joe Martens. “With recent legislation now allowing 12-13 year olds to purchase a Junior Bowhunting license, we encourage adult hunters to share their passion, experience, and time with a junior hunter this year.”

 

Hunters are reminded of several other changes for the upcoming hunting seasons:

Mandatory antler restrictions are in effect during bow and gun hunting seasons this year in a portion of Wildlife Management Unit (WMU) 3A in the Catskills (part of Delaware, Sullivan and Ulster counties). The new law, established by the New York State Legislature, covers the portion of WMU 3A that lies south and west of State Route 28 and requires that bucks taken in this part of WMU 3A have at least one antler with 3 or more points that are at least 1 inch long.

 

The law applies to all public and private lands and all hunting seasons in the affected portion of WMU 3A. Only hunters under the age of 17 are exempt and they may take any antlered deer with at least one antler measuring three or more inches in length. See www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/27663.html for more information about antler restrictions in New York.

 

Bear hunting has been expanded in eastern New York,

 from Westchester to Washington County, and is open during the same time periods as deer hunting. For specific bear hunting areas and season dates, visit www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/28605.html#Black.

 

Crossbows may NOT be used during the early bowhunting or early muzzleloading seasons, but crossbows may be used during the regular firearms and late muzzleloader seasons. See Crossbow Hunting at www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/68802.html for more information and the Certificate of Qualification.

 

DEC encourages bowhunters to participate in the Bowhunter Sighting Log www.dec.ny.gov/animals/7193.html. The Bowhunter Sighting Log involves keeping a diary of your bowhunting activity and the number of animals seen. These data help DEC track deer and other wildlife populations. To participate, e-mail DEC at fwwildlf@gw.dec.state.ny.us (specify Bowhunter Sighting Log in the subject line) and provide name, address, hunter ID (back tag number), a list of the counties where you hunt, and whether or not you have participated in New York’s bowhunter log in any previous year.

 

Additional information of interest for hunters:  2011 Deer Hunting Season Forecasts by WMU www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/37304.html.  

Hunting the Black Bear in New York (PDF booklet) www.dec.ny.gov/docs/wildlife_pdf/bbhunting10.PDF.  

Deer and Bear Harvest Reports www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/42232.html.

 

Subscribe to New York Big Game email list at http://lists.dec.state.ny.us/mailman/listinfo/nybiggame to periodically receive information about deer and bear management in New York, and/or sign up for Field Notes, an email newsletter of the DEC Division of Fish, Wildlife, and Marine Resources: www.dec.ny.gov/about/63801.html.

 


Pennsylvania

Special event in Erie, PA on wind energy

The movie WINDFALL will be shown at the Erie County Blasco Public Library-Hirt Auditorium on Sunday November 6, 2011 at 2:00 pm.  It will be FREE to the public.  This award winning documentary film by director Laura Israel provides the public with accurate information on industrial wind turbine energy as it depicts the Town of Meredith, NY and an Irish wind turbine energy developer that came calling.

 

The film is 83 minutes long and there will be a very short introduction of the film and no discussion in the auditorium afterward.  There is a possibility of a representative of the Chautauqua County Citizens for Responsible Wind Power

may be available in the lobby after the movie to provide an

update on the status Ripley-Westfield, NY wind project and nearby Chautauqua County projects.

 

This movie is very relevant to what is happening in the Erie, PA region concerning proposed industrial wind turbine projects.  Erie and Warren Counties in PA both have large industrial wind turbine (IWT) projects in the planning stage with more to come.  The adjoining counties of Ashtabula, Ohio and Chautauqua, New York also have industrial wind turbine projects in various stages of development.  Large IWT projects for offshore in Lake Erie are being planned and proposed for both the Canadian and United States sides of the Lake.


Other Breaking News Items

(Click on title or URL to read full article)

 

Banner year for Little Manistee River salmon run with 6.5 million eggs collected

Salmon anglers are having a banner season on Lake Michigan and its tributaries.  Catch numbers are good and the chinook salmon big. State officials say that is largely due to a banner crop of alewives for them to eat.Those salmon began coursing up northern Lake Michigan tributaries as early as August looking

 

Groups hope new study on Asian Carp barrier will speed up action 

A $2-million study that shows three ways to build barriers to separate the Mississippi River from Lake Michigan in an attempt to stop Asian carp from getting into Lake Michigan will be released January, in hopes of spurring the Army Corps of Engineers to a speedier conclusion to its own study, which

 

EDITORIAL: Stop the runoff
Deepwater fish in the Great Lakes are starving while invasive mussels choke the shorelines. Congress and the Great Lakes states must act together to curb this latest threat.

Toxic algae getting worse in Lake Erie
Between the mid-1960s and 1990, phosphorus levels dropped sharply after efforts were made to change farming practices and take phosphorus out of detergents. But in 1995, levels began going up again, leading to huge blooms in recent years.

Asian carp threaten native species, businesses if they hit the Great Lakes
Scientists believe Lake Erie, especially the Western basin, has the most to lose if the carp find their way there.

Wisconsin DNR fisheries facility manager says salmon run best in decades
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DNR Besadny Fisheries Facility manager Mike Baumgartner of Kewaunee said this fall's salmon run is the best he's seen in two decades of sorting fish for spawning.

Be aware, respectful in Ontario waters
American anglers must accept that Ontario controls two-thirds of Lake St. Clair and half of the St. Clair and Detroit rivers. In Ontario waters, Ontario rules apply, and anyone who fishes there needs to study the Ontario fishing handbook.

Report: Mercury levels mostly down in Great Lakes
Mercury levels have dropped about 20 percent in the Great Lakes in recent decades but remain dangerously high and are getting worse in some places, scientists said in a report released this week in Detroit.

 

Experts say first offshore wind turbines in Great Lakes years away
Large wind turbines are still years away from being installed in the Great Lakes, the federal government’s offshore wind manager and a former industry insider say.

Could Asian carp spawn here?
The verdict is mixed as to whether Asian carp will survive, let alone spawn, in the Great Lakes and their tributaries.

Outdoors Insider: Report says Lake Erie algae worse now than in the 1960s
Lake Erie is in big trouble, according to a National Wildlife Federation report released this week, because of enormous algal blooms that have put native species of fish in peril and are threatening human health.

Michigan courts cut Lake Michigan wind research, right along with heating assistance funds
Michigan courts cut Lake Michigan wind research, right along with heating assistance funds.

 

 

The opinions expressed here are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the GLSFC, its officers or staff. 

Reproduction of any material by paid-up members of the GLSFC is encouraged but appropriate credit must be given. 

Reproduction by others without written permission is prohibited.

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