West Virginia's Department of Natural Resources showed proposed hunting, fishing, and trapping regulations at John Marshall High School's cafeteria. Those proposals included 2014 regulations for white-tail deer, wild turkey, black bear, and boar. Also available for comment were 2015-2016 general hunting and trapping regulations, as well as 2015 fishing regulations, amphibian, and reptile regulations.
The DNR holds the public meetings in an "open house" format. This format gives people the chance to talk with wildlife police and regulators directly.
Paul Johansen, the Assistant Chief, Game Management for DNR said, "I think it provides an opportunity for hunters and sportsmen to come and talk with us one on one or in small groups. It seems to be more effective, and it seems to generate really good, and really productive discussion."
One change set for the 2015 hunting and fishing seasons concerns purchasing licenses. The DNR hopes by the time that season comes to have an on-line and point of sale system up and running. Sportsmen would have the ability to purchase licenses without necessarily having to make a trip to the county courthouse or other license outlet.
West Virginia has a mandatory check-in system for big game species. This new system also will allow hunters an easier way to check in big game.
"We're still going to have mandatory check -- but we're going to allow hunters to check their deer either through telephone or an internet-based system," Johansen said.
Hunters wanting to make written comments about the proposed regulations to the DNR have until April 4th.