Earlier in the month of February, Representative Tuggle brought back to life HB 362, a bill introduced in 2012 that aimed to defund Forever Wild by taxing the principle fund. Forever Wild is an organization that purchases land from willing sellers and hands that property to the state of Alabama for public use and recreation. Forever Wild is funded by tax royalties from off shore oil drilling.
On Monday the 26th, HB 362 failed to pass the House, however as a last-ditch effort, representative Tuggle pushed for a second attempt last night, March 1, but failed to meet the required 2/3 majority vote. We hope that we have seen the end of this misguided legislation, but we will continue to stay alert in Alabama.
Jeff Jones, Huntsville, AL resident and Chair of the Southeast Chapter, Backcountry Hunters and Anglers had this to say about the recent win:
"We were pleased to see that HB 362 did not receive enough votes to move forward in the Alabama legislative process. Our message was centered around a common-sense approach that emphasized the value of the outdoor recreation economy to our local municipalities. That message was heard by our representatives, and HB 362 received bi-partisan support against the measure. The voice of the hunter-angler conservationist is growing in Alabama, and I am grateful to the members of the Backcountry Hunters and Anglers for leading that charge.”