Apply now for fish and wildlife budget oversight committees

August 23, 2021


Do you purchase hunting or fishing licenses and wonder how the money is spent? Now is your opportunity to play an active oversight role in how the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources spends license dollars from the Game and Fish Fund.

Minnesota residents can apply for a two-year appointment on the Fisheries Oversight Committee or the Wildlife Oversight Committee. Each year, these committees review financial data and descriptions, and make recommendations on how the DNR spends funds from the Game and Fish Fund; they also produce a joint annual report.

The application period is open now through Monday, Sept. 20. A detailed request for applications and an online application link is available on the DNR website. The committees are established pursuant to state law and the DNR needs at least 13 people to fill committee vacancies.

Burl Haar, an oversight committee member from Afton, said his five years on the committee were very rewarding. “It provided a meaningful way to ‘give back’ for all the years I’ve enjoyed Minnesota natural resources, and it allowed me to not only better understand the DNR’s important work but to have a real impact on how that work is carried out,” he said. “I’d highly recommend involvement for anyone devoted to the outdoors.”

Faith Connors, an oversight committee member from Princeton, agrees. “I enjoyed working with professionals from around the state,” she said. “Being a part of this committee gave me an inside look at how license dollars are spent to benefit our natural resources.”

The DNR hosts online technology for meetings and offers mileage reimbursement for those who travel to meet in person. Individuals with a disability who have questions about needing a reasonable accommodation to participate can contact one of the managers listed in the request for applications online, or call using your preferred Telecommunications Relay Provider.

Applicant must be Minnesota residents and must have purchased at least one of the personal or commercial Minnesota licenses for hunting, fishing or trapping since Jan. 1, 2020. The request for applications on the DNR website has more information about the task and time commitments.

Game and Fish Fund dollars come from hunting and fishing license sales, a sales tax on lottery tickets and other sources of revenue — including a federal reimbursement based on an excise tax on certain types of outdoor gear and marine fuels. The Minnesota Legislature authorizes all allocations from the Game and Fish Fund.

More information about the fund, expenditure reports and oversight committee reports are available on the DNR website.