Action Alert: QDMA/NDA Supports Michigan Ballot Proposal 20-1

October 12, 2020 | by National Deer Alliance

The Quality Deer Management Association (QDMA) and National Deer Alliance (NDA) is proud to stand with a diverse group of conservation leaders to endorse Michigan’s Proposal 1 to invest in protecting and expanding access to Michigan’s natural spaces for future generations.

For decades, the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund (MNRTF) has been protecting wildlife habitat, water and outdoor spaces. The Fund is not tax-funded; rather, it's funded by royalties collected from oil and gas operations, and these royalties are directed towards land acquisition and public recreation projects in all 83 counties across Michigan. However, the MNRTF reached its cap in 2011, and the royalties are now directed to the State Park Endowment Fund (SPEF) to pay for land acquisition for state parks and maintenance, operations and capital improvements. But SPEF has a cap too.

This November 3rd, Michigan voters have a historic opportunity to update and expand the MNRTF so that it can continue supporting the places that make Michigan unique – from public lands for hunting and fishing to the Great Lakes. Best of all, it achieves this as it always has, without tax dollars from Michigan families.

Proposal 1 will protect Michigan wildlife habitat and public lands by:

  • Removing the cap on the MNRTF, allowing it to again receive revenues from the royalties on oil, gas, and mining on state-owned land once the SPEF reaches its cap – safeguarding a constitutionally protected revenue source for conservation and recreation for future generations.
  • Adding renovation and redevelopment of public recreation facilities as an allowable use of MNRTF dollars, allowing it to help communities reinvest in their aging recreation infrastructure in addition to creating new facilities.
  • Requiring at least 25% of Trust Fund disbursements be made available for development, renovation and redevelopment of public recreation facilities to match the minimum 25% for land acquisition and protection, allowing the flexibility needed to fund and update access, trails, parks and more in communities across the state, while continuing to prioritize land conservation and protection.

These changes were put on the ballot with unanimous support from the Michigan Legislature and are endorsed by a wide range of conservation, environmental, business, labor and community leaders from across the state. You can learn more about the proposal and the organizations endorsing it at www.miwaterwildlifeparks.com. Join us in support of Proposal 1 to protect Michigan’s wildlife habitat, water and public lands by voting YES on November 3!