South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem on Friday signed SB176, a bill to increase habitat programs and strengthen the future of pheasant hunting in South Dakota. Noem's signature on the bill funds the Second Century Habitat initiative and completes work on bills passed during 2019 legislative session.

Here's how this will play out - SB176 allocates $1 million that may be matched with private donations and federal conservation programs. The money will be administered by officials with the Second Century Habitat Fund for the protection and enhancement of wildlife habitat.

“The first century of pheasant hunting put South Dakota on the map as a destination for every hunter,” said Noem. “In recent years, however, pheasant numbers have dropped and habitat lands have diminished. The bill I signed this week is a step to reverse those trends. By investing in habitat preservation and expansion, we can preserve our outdoor traditions and ensure the second century of pheasant hunting is as great as the first.”

Each year, 81,000 non-resident pheasant hunters spend more than $156 million in South Dakota – a significant engine to tourism, the state’s second largest industry.

SB176 goes into effect on June 28.

Source: Kristin Wileman, state.sd.us

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