Proposed bill would allow landowners free elk tag for every four public hunters allowed on property in Montana.
There is a bill being proposed in Montana detailed in The Billings Gazette that would allow landowners a free elk tag every four years. Landowners who are willing to enter into a contract with Fish, Wildlife, and Parks to allow public elk hunting on their property would be eligible for a free elk tag.
The bill is an attempt to provide added areas for hunter access for elk. At the same time it will give landowners an incentive to provide access. The FWP would choose the four hunters through a random drawing of available applicants.
What makes this bill even better is the one-to-four ratio of hunters to free elk tags could be applied to four or even 100 hunters or more. This will depend on the details of the landowner's contract. For instance, if a landowner allowed 100 hunters, FWP would award them 25 free elk licenses. The landowner would even be able to share his or her permits with immediate family members. This would apply whether they are residents or nonresidents, as well as full-time employees.
The bill is opposed by some, but support of it comes from many places. The Montana Outfitters and Guides Association, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, Montana Farm Bureau and the Montana Wildlife Federation are all in support of the bill.