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Program Title: Access Public Lands (formerly called Access Montana)

Program Coordinator: Alan Charles

Program Authorizing Statute:
MCA 87-1-265 Hunter management and hunting access enhancement program created. The department may establish…programs of landowner assistance that encourage public access to private and public lands for purposes of hunting and may adopt rules to carry out program purposes.

Program Funding:

Portions of license fees funding the Hunting Access Enhancement Program

Come Home to Hunt license revenue (new in 2010 (FY11) – 4-year sunset

FY10 Program Allocation: $25,000

Access Public Lands coordinates FWP agency activities related to hunting access on public lands. The program works to negotiate and maintain legal public hunting access to public lands, resolve landowner/sportsman conflicts, assist in marking public land boundaries, and disseminate information about hunting access on public lands. Access Public Lands utilizes a cooperative inter-agency approach for the resolution of landowner/sportsman conflicts related to hunting access on public lands.

Program Goals:

• Coordinate efforts to identify public lands where public hunting access currently exists.

• Coordinate efforts to identify public lands hunting access needs and, where necessary, establish legal public hunting access to public lands either where such access does not currently exist or where current access is threatened.

• Reduce landowner/sportsman conflicts related to hunting access on public lands.

Program Objectives:

• Work with regional staff and state and federal land managers to implement boundary marking projects in targeted areas to reduce conflicts and improve hunter dispersion.
• Solicit input from landowners, sportsman, and department staff to identify areas of historic conflict and develop appropriate solutions wherever possible.
• Develop and disseminate directories, maps, and informational brochures to assist the public with information about hunting access to public lands.
• Identify/prioritize areas where public land hunting access is needed, but either not available or threatened.
• Participate in state and federal land management agency planning and decision-making processes that affect public land access.
• Work to develop partnerships with local and regional state and federal land management agency personnel responsible for implementing public land access projects.

related articles

Ruby River Stream Access Victory
( 07/01/2016 )   7/1/2016PLWA, once again, has been victorious in the battle for the public's stream access on the Ruby River, from the Seyler Lane Bridge, likely the original stagecoach route from Salt Lake City, north to Virginia City and Helena.It has been over a decade that PLWA (formerly known as PLAAI) has been involved in a lawsuit over public access to the Ruby River from Seyler Lane and the Seyler Bridge, a public prescriptive easement right-of-way in Madison County.

"Dark Money" Brought to Light
( 07/01/2016 )   The June-July, Newscasts section of Fly Fisherman reported on the recent investigation by Montana's Commissioner of Political Practices, Jonathan Motl, into a dark money campaign that could overturn Montana's Stream Access.Fly Fisherman recounted the Montana Growth Network's campaign contributions to District Judge Laurie McKinnon's run for our Montana Supreme Court.

public land issues

Seyler Lane Update
9/24/2015Seyler Bridge Easement - More Than Just RecreationUpdate - Kennedys attorney requested a postponement of the September 21 hearing.

Tenderfoot - Four Years and Counting
9/24/2015Tenderfoot Creek is a tributary of the Smith River, joining the Smith a mile or so north of Camp Baker.

    18 more public land issues

Hiding in Public Grass

Public Land/Water Access Association Inc. or PLWA, is a citizen group organized and operated under the Montana nonprofit corporation act.

Articles and Information on this site represent the opinion of the writer and are not intended as legal advice. Legal counsel may be needed in dealing with specific access situations and issues.
      PLWA.ORG   -   Public Land & Water Association