Field & Stream, “The World’s Leading Outdoor Magazine,” suggests Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger get a stocking full of coal for Christmas this year, listing him in the December-January issue as the biggest outdoor “villian” of the year:
Playing the rake is not new for Gov. Schwarzenegger, whose first turn as the Terminator saw him working to destroy the world instead of saving it. And the governor’s win will not come as any surprise to fishermen in the Golden State, where funding for salmon and steelhead restoration has been dramatically cut despite sharply declining populations for years. During the governor’s tenure, the chinook salmon fishery in California collapsed, and on May 1, 2008, commercial and recreational salmon fishing were both banned along the West Coast in California and much of Oregon.
But the governor has not limited his influence to fish and fishermen. He’s also signed a ban on .50 caliber rifles, and on his watch the percentage of licensed hunters in California has dropped below 1%.
Among the magazine’s heroes this year are U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., who backed a Farm Bill measure that created grants for farmers and opened land to hunters; and 2008 Republican vice presidential nominee and Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, lauded “for being the first true hunter to run for executive office since Teddy Roosevelt.”
UPDATE @ 3:48 P.M.:Now, wait just a darned minute, says Lisa Page of the governor’s press office, who says “the Governor has a strong record on sportsmen issues.”
In fact, we have $120 million in federal money that will go to salmon fisherman which the Governor fought hard for. The feds initially gave us $100 million (for all three states) and the Governor pushed hard to get the remaining $70 million (see the attached letter).
He also signed SB 562 by Senator Pat Wiggins (D-Santa Rosa), which appropriates approximately $5.3 million of the $45 million in Proposition 84 funds to begin coastal salmon and steelhead fishery restoration projects.
He also just signed the Klamath Agreement two weeks ago, which is the first step in what would be the largest dam removal project ever in history, that California, Oregon and our federal and private partners are undertaking to improve water quality, water supply and fish populations in the Klamath region.
Also, despite a very difficult budget year, the state’s parks have stayed open and he exempted the state’s fisheries from the state worker EO.
Take that, Field & Stream!