Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission
Outreach and Education Committee

November 7, 2001

Commission Hearing Room
Texas Parks & Wildlife Department Headquarters Complex
4200 Smith School Road
Austin, TX 78744

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             6    
                  
             7             BE IT REMEMBERED that heretofore on the 

             8    7TH day of NOVEMBER 2001, there came on to be 

             9    heard matters under the regulatory authority of 

            10    the Parks and Wildlife  Commission of Texas, in 

            11    the commission hearing room of the Texas Parks and 

            12    Wildlife Headquarters complex, Austin, Travis 

            13    County, Texas, beginning at 4:36 p.m., to wit:

            14    

            15    
                  
            16    
                  APPEARANCES:
            17    THE PARKS AND WILDLIFE COMMISSION:
                  OUTREACH AND EDUCATION COMMITTEE:
            18    Chair:   Katharine Armstrong Idsal, San Antonio, Texas
                           Ernest Angelo, Jr., Midland, Texas
            19             John Avila, Jr., Fort Worth, Texas
                           Carol E. Dinkins, Houston, Texas (absent)
            20             Joseph Fitzsimons, San Antonio, Texas
                           Alvin L. Henry, Houston, Texas 
            21                   (Committee Chair)
                           Philip Montgomery, III, Dallas, Texas
            22             Donato D. Ramos, Laredo, Texas
                           Mark E. Watson, Jr., San Antonio, Texas 
            23                   (absent)
                  
            24    THE PARKS AND WILDLIFE DEPARTMENT:
                           Andrew H. Sansom, Executive Director, and 
            25    other personnel of the Parks and Wildlife 
                  Department.




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             1                     NOVEMBER 7, 2001

             2                         *-*-*-*-*

             3         OUTREACH AND EDUCATION COMMITTEE MEETING

             4                         *-*-*-*-*

             5                  CHAIRMAN HENRY:  We would like to 

             6    get approval for the main minutes that were not 

             7    approved at our last meeting.  All for those for 

             8    approval. 

             9                  COMMISSIONER ANGELO:  Move approval. 

            10                  COMMISSIONER RAMOS:  Second. 

            11                  CHAIRMAN HENRY:  All in favor?  

            12    Opposed?  Thank you.  Andy, chairman's charges.

            13          AGENDA ITEM NO. 1:  BRIEFING - CHAIRMAN'S 

            14          CHARGES.

            15                  MR. SANSOM:  Mr. Chairman, I have no 

            16    comments on the charges at this time. 

            17                  CHAIRMAN HENRY:  Thank you very 

            18    much.  Steve, are you going to kick us off -- 

            19                  CHAIRMAN IDSAL:  Are we on the 

            20    chairman's charges yet?  Have we just done that? 

            21                  CHAIRMAN HENRY:  Yes. 

            22                  CHAIRMAN IDSAL:  Can I make a -- Mr. 

            23    Chairman? 

            24                  CHAIRMAN HENRY:  Yes. 

            25                  CHAIRMAN IDSAL:  I wanted to make a 





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             1    note at this point that I have formed an advisory 

             2    committee, education and outreach advisory 

             3    committee, to assist Mr. Henry in his full 

             4    committee of education and outreach.  And we are 

             5    currently appointing members to that.  And with 

             6    Mr. Henry's help and others, I think, you know, 

             7    within a very short period of time we'll have a 

             8    strong committee to help in his efforts and the 

             9    efforts of the full commission. 

            10                  CHAIRMAN HENRY:  Thank you.  

            11          AGENDA ITEM NO. 2:  BRIEFING - OUTDOOR KIDS 

            12          ADVENTURE AND OUTDOOR KIDS CHALLENGE.

            13                  MR. HALL:  Mr. Chairman and members 

            14    of the committee, my name is Steve Hall.  I'm the 

            15    education and outreach director.  And today I've 

            16    got a couple of short briefings, mostly to 

            17    describe different programs, education and 

            18    outreach programs that are going on for your 

            19    information and for your benefit, and to highlight 

            20    some of the best practices of education and 

            21    outreach as we go forth with the sunset committee 

            22    charges. 

            23                  The first is the Outdoor Kids 

            24    Adventure and Outdoor Kids Challenge.  This was a 

            25    project that we brought to Expo 2001.  The 





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             1    challenge and -- or the adventure and the 

             2    challenge were two pilot projects of trying to get 

             3    more inner city kids involved at Expo, at least 

             4    bring them to Expo.  And this was from a statewide 

             5    perspective. 

             6                  The result was over 2000 visitors, 

             7    most from Houston, but also from Dallas, 

             8    San Antonio, and Laredo.  And some of them were 

             9    long-standing partners, especially from Houston, 

            10    such as the Nature Heritage Society and Buffalo 

            11    Soldiers Hunting and Fishing Club and Stephen F. 

            12    Austin High School, long-standing partners.  But 

            13    what was also exciting was some of the new 

            14    partners that we were able to reach for this 

            15    effort, certainly church groups in this outreach 

            16    center.  And one of the more exciting ones was the 

            17    Monica Lamb Wellness Foundation.  She personally 

            18    brought 38 individuals from Houston.  And I'll 

            19    describe that a little bit later on.

            20                  Some of the San Antonio partners 

            21    certainly included the parks and rec departments; 

            22    again, schools, churches, and different other 

            23    entities that are certainly new groups that we've 

            24    reached with outreach just in this short pilot 

            25    project.





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             1                  Dallas partners, same schools, parks 

             2    and rec.  And thanks to Commissioner Ramos, a 

             3    Laredo partner, the Laredo Parks and Rec 

             4    Department also attended.  I'd like to thank 

             5    certainly Chairman Henry and also Commissioner 

             6    Ramos and the rest of you that personally 

             7    contributed to this.  Without the sponsorships 

             8    that you raised, this obviously wouldn't have been 

             9    possible. 

            10                  The supporting partners were the big 

            11    three of Parks and Wildlife Foundation of Texas, 

            12    Monica Lamb Wellness Foundation certainly helped 

            13    out in Houston, and then the Parks and Wildlife 

            14    Department education and outreach efforts.

            15                  The promotional event held in 

            16    Houston was the Outdoor Kids Expo with Monica 

            17    Lamb.  It was a pre-Expo event that we had two 

            18    missions there.  One was to promote Texas wildlife 

            19    expo in the statewide effort, but also to create a 

            20    local expo, if you will, to interest, obviously, 

            21    inner city kids at MacGregor Park. 

            22                  We estimate about 800 participated, 

            23    and this was with a huge rainstorm the morning, 

            24    that Saturday.  So I think we were successful in 

            25    at least attracting crowds despite the weather 





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             1    conditions. 

             2                  You can see the five types of 

             3    activities that were the main events held.  And 

             4    certainly these were a taster of what they 

             5    experienced at Texas Wildlife Expo.  It costs 

             6    quite a bit to get 2,000 kids and family members 

             7    to Expo, most of which was transportation cost -- 

             8    half of which was transportation cost, and the 

             9    rest in food and tee shirts.  I think tee shirts 

            10    was important.  If you saw the kids at Expo, it 

            11    kind of gives them identity, and obviously some 

            12    excitement to bring back to their local community 

            13    that wouldn't otherwise be there, when they wear 

            14    their shirts around the community. 

            15                  The direct cost was figured at $18 

            16    per individual.  And based on other outreach types 

            17    of models and projects, this is actually very 

            18    reasonable cost.  And it's going to be that kind 

            19    of cost to get down and dirty and to really reach 

            20    customers that we know otherwise do not reach. 

            21                  The challenge we held at Expo 

            22    also -- and this combined several of the last 

            23    activities of Expo, the poster poetry and essay 

            24    contest, kind of with the scout activities check 

            25    list.  It combined the benefits or the aspects of 





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             1    both of those projects.  And we created 

             2    essentially an opportunity for kids to participate 

             3    in a well-rounded group of activities, get 

             4    signatures from different folks that sponsored the 

             5    different events at Expo, and then essentially rip 

             6    off this card and throw it in one of three 

             7    buckets; the camping, the hunting, and the fishing 

             8    bucket.  This is where we were able to award them 

             9    a grand prize -- grand prizes following Expo. 

            10                  The camping included camping gear, 

            11    TCP passport for five years, and waived fees at 

            12    state parks.  And then the hunting and fishing 

            13    also included a lifetime hunting and fishing 

            14    license, the gear, and guided trips.  We selected 

            15    individuals after Expo's 200 -- 2,230 participants 

            16    threw their name in the buckets, of which about 

            17    half were camping and the other half hunting and 

            18    fishing.  And we awarded six lucky winners the 

            19    camping, hunting, and fishing prizes.  And all can 

            20    partake in those prizes.  And I think it's going 

            21    to be kind of a nice little recognition of the 

            22    outdoor kids challenge. 

            23                  Our future plans are to certainly go 

            24    after and really pursue local outdoor kid 

            25    adventures similar to the one we held in Houston.  





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             1    I think bringing outdoor expo to the inner cities 

             2    is one strategy, and then certainly recognizing 

             3    those partners at our main expo.  And that's the 

             4    strategy that we'd like to undertake in the 

             5    future.  Continue the outdoor kids challenge, just 

             6    to grow that one out. 

             7                  As you know, expo is one of those 

             8    growth projects, you start small and you grow it 

             9    out.  And I think outdoor kids challenge certainly 

            10    has a potential for reaching an enormous amount of 

            11    kids, up to ten to 12,000 kids at Expo 2001. 

            12                  And with that, I'd handle any 

            13    questions on these two mini outreach events.

            14                  COMMISSIONER MONTGOMERY:  What's 

            15    your goal on timetable for rolling out the outdoor 

            16    challenge to other cities? 

            17                  MR. HALL:  The outdoor adventure or 

            18    the -- I would think that's ongoing.  We -- 

            19    actually, now we participate in numerous outreach 

            20    events all over the state, and I think it's just 

            21    the way we package it.  We come as divisions or we 

            22    come as programs or we come as entities, like Sea 

            23    Center Texas.  But we don't come as the outdoor 

            24    kids adventure. 

            25                  I think one strategy is to package 





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             1    ourselves as an agency at already existing events, 

             2    such as we attend a lot of festivals, boat shows.  

             3    You know, anything that we go to, we could 

             4    probably package ourselves a whole lot better as 

             5    outdoor kids or outdoor kids adventures.  We 

             6    participate in Safety Days, Bandera Fest for 

             7    Hunters last Friday night.  Casts for Teachers.  

             8    So these are ongoing activities.  That's one 

             9    strategy. 

            10                  And the next one is to create these 

            11    outdoor expos through our regional coordinators in  

            12    Dallas, San Antonio, and Houston, initially.  

            13    Houston gave us the start on that.  I think we can 

            14    easily do one in San Antonio and Dallas, kind of a 

            15    pre-fall promotion of wildlife expo, but certainly 

            16    to host this mini expo in those three cities next 

            17    year, and then grow it out from there.

            18                  COMMISSIONER MONTGOMERY:  I just 

            19    think Dallas and Houston are both so far from 

            20    here, it's hard to get -- in spite of super human 

            21    effort, to get future numbers here, and then 

            22    you've got Lubbock, Amarillo, and El Paso all with 

            23    fairly large populations.  And to me, it would be 

            24    nice to have a goal, get whatever -- however 

            25    you're going to target, whether it's participating 





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             1    in other events or doing one of our own.  

             2    Something like that.

             3                  MR. HALL:  We're poised right now to 

             4    certainly do the big three cities, but certainly 

             5    will try to investigate Laredo and Lubbock, as 

             6    well.  To try to get a little bit more statewide 

             7    exposure but we're definitely poised to do the 

             8    three big cities for the next expo. 

             9                  COMMISSIONER RAMOS:  Have any of 

            10    these programs focused on the disadvantaged 

            11    specifically the handicapped and people that may 

            12    not have the physical ability, perhaps, to travel 

            13    to where we go out to them? 

            14                  MR. HALL:  Not with the Outdoor Kids 

            15    Adventure, but certainly that would be a nice 

            16    goal.  We've done certainly a lot of efforts with 

            17    P.O.I.N.T., and we've undertaken an agreement also 

            18    with the National Wild Turkey Federation's wheel 

            19    and sportsmans program.  And we're going to get 

            20    better at dealing with -- or targeting groups, 

            21    people with disabilities and these kinds of 

            22    things. 

            23                  And we've worked on trails that 

            24    Scott mentioned, specifically the Brazos Bend 

            25    State Park Trail, with, you know, interpretive 





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             1    services, including for the blind and for the 

             2    deaf, et cetera.  But I think we could probably do 

             3    a little better job at the adventure in trying to 

             4    attract people with disabilities by simply working 

             5    with our known partners; like P.O.I.N.T.  and also 

             6    trying to scrape and scratch out new partners.  

             7    And I can think of three; St. David's, Houston 

             8    Rehabilitation Center -- and these are already 

             9    partners of ours, but we probably need to 

            10    aggressively ask them to participate in something 

            11    like an adventure. 

            12                  COMMISSIONER RAMOS:  Like in Laredo, 

            13    I know the -- we, as attorneys in the Laredo Bar 

            14    Association, would sponsor a fishing outing for 

            15    those with disabilities there at Lake Casa Blanca.  

            16    It's a very, very big success. 

            17                  CHAIRMAN HENRY:  There were a few 

            18    kids, if I may, with various disabilities who came 

            19    in with these groups.  I know San Antonio, for 

            20    example, with Bobby Barrera, when I got on the 

            21    bus, there were several kids there who had some 

            22    disabilities.  I noticed a couple from Houston, 

            23    even -- although that was not, as far as I know -- 

            24    and I'm sure it wasn't -- the intent to go out and 

            25    seek out handicapped kids.  It's an excellent 





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             1    idea. 

             2                  One of the things that has been 

             3    mentioned in the advisory -- Expo advisory 

             4    committee has to do with the questions that you're 

             5    raising relative to the spreading of these 

             6    efforts.  And it looks like initially it -- in the 

             7    near future, it will probably be in terms of mini 

             8    expos. 

             9                  COMMISSIONER MONTGOMERY:  I can't 

            10    imagine --

            11                  CHAIRMAN HENRY:  This one is just 

            12    too big to move around and get all the sponsors 

            13    together.  Let me just -- Madam Chairman, just say 

            14    one other -- make one other comment.  This was an 

            15    effort that really got steamrolled.  A lot of 

            16    people have given me the credit for the idea.  The 

            17    idea wasn't mine.  I picked up on it very quickly. 

            18                  And I want to thank Ernie Angelo 

            19    publicly for his advice and support.  Ernie was 

            20    one of the people who mentioned the whole idea of 

            21    packaging support for the kids to get them here.  

            22    And that turned out to be very successful, Ernie 

            23    and Phil and Lee and Perry Bass and Tim Hixon and 

            24    several others contributed to it.

            25                  But already that day of Expo, as I 





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             1    was moving around, a number of people said to me 

             2    that they thought this was worthy of duplicating 

             3    and growing next year, and have already said that 

             4    they plan to assist in making it bigger in other 

             5    areas.

             6                  There's one thing -- and I -- I hope 

             7    you won't tell them.  It will embarrass them.  As 

             8    we were greeting the buses, Andy and I, that were 

             9    coming with kids, when the San Antonio group came 

            10    with Bobby Barrera, that's something I'll never 

            11    forget as long as I live, Bobby got off the bus.  

            12    And he said come and welcome the kids, and we did. 

            13                  I saw him reach into a bag and take 

            14    out a big package of $10 bills.  And we couldn't 

            15    imagine -- I know somebody said, "Bobby, you 

            16    getting ready to have a crap game or something?"  

            17    90 kids got off those two buses.  And as each kid 

            18    sat on the expo bus, he said, "No, I'm going to 

            19    give this to the kids."  I said, "Bobby, you know, 

            20    we're paying for the tee shirts and the lunch, so 

            21    you don't need to."  He said, "Well, you know, we 

            22    just decided we would give the kids a little 

            23    something extra so they would have some money to 

            24    spend during the day."  He gave each one of those 

            25    kids a brand-new $10 bill.  And I just sat there 





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             1    amazed. 

             2                  And I saw Roy the following Monday, 

             3    and said, "Thank you, old man, for submitting the 

             4    money."  But I saw other acts of generosity and 

             5    kindness like that during the day that were very 

             6    encouraging, and already the wheels in motion, I 

             7    know in some cases, to duplicate and magnify that 

             8    effort in different ways next time around. 

             9                  And I'm very grateful for it and I 

            10    appreciate everyone's help. 

            11                  MR. HALL:  I would also like to 

            12    recognize Bob Murphy, the outreach coordinator for 

            13    coordinating the event and working with Mr. Henry 

            14    on that.

            15                  CHAIRMAN HENRY:  Where is Bob?  I 

            16    was going to ask that.

            17                  MR. HALL:  Bob had a sick child and 

            18    had to scoot home.  He would have been here.

            19                  CHAIRMAN HENRY:  He did a fine job 

            20    of coordinating, in particular, our regional 

            21    coordinators. 

            22                  COMMISSIONER MONTGOMERY:  How do you 

            23    strategically link the kids' program with the 

            24    flattened growth in hunting and fishing license 

            25    sales?  Do we have a kind of measure or objective 





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             1    there of how we're treating this also, not only as 

             2    a education device but a marking device in trying 

             3    to build our consumer population, build our 

             4    constituency?  Can we measure it in any way?  

             5                  MR. HALL:  Well, that's a really 

             6    great question because I would have to say we 

             7    really don't effectively.  We're going to try to 

             8    get at that in terms of the sunset charges.  I've 

             9    appointed Nancy Herron of my staff to try to 

            10    figure out the effectiveness, not only of our 

            11    programs in our outreach efforts, which is a huge 

            12    task because no one has nationally had really 

            13    gotten a great handle on that, but certainly I 

            14    think we've got some tools and people and programs 

            15    in place to do it.  But more toward your question, 

            16    I think that linking with our license databases.  

            17    For example, I mean, for the first time, we've 

            18    linked hunter education with our hunting license 

            19    sales.

            20                  COMMISSIONER FITZSIMONS:  So the 

            21    hunter safety course, you can link to that --

            22                  MR. HALL:  Yeah, for the first time 

            23    we have the capability.  And I think that's what 

            24    the key is, is all that infrastructure of hooking 

            25    up databases.  I think that we've operated by and 





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             1    large separate databases in terms of education and 

             2    outreach efforts. 

             3                  And I think the key will be to link 

             4    with the rest of our agency or the rest of our 

             5    divisions to try to get at just even the 

             6    demography of how many kids are interested in the 

             7    outdoors or -- you know, you heard about how many 

             8    kids think whitetail deer species are endangered.  

             9    Of course, there's a trick in that question.  But 

            10    nonetheless, we've participated with like Billy 

            11    Higginbotham with this whitetail deer module that 

            12    goes around to the schools.  And that's probably 

            13    one of the best tools that I know of to get at 

            14    attitudes of kids and then their interest in the 

            15    outdoors. 

            16                  But it's kind of a pre and a post 

            17    situation, and it's only a short term.  Certainly, 

            18    Robert Denton and some of the guys that did 

            19    long-term studies of anglers, that methodology 

            20    ought to be used in education and outreach 

            21    efforts, as well. 

            22                  COMMISSIONER MONTGOMERY:  As a 

            23    matter of strategy, I would like to see us somehow 

            24    define some of the goals as being a catalyst to 

            25    cause kids to go out and pursue these activities 





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             1    in a continuing way, not just in a one-time great 

             2    event way, but not to demean them.  You've got to 

             3    start there.  But just to kind of take a strategic 

             4    view of it, and then to be able to quantify that 

             5    over time. 

             6                  But I think if we set the objective 

             7    on how to get them and induce the activity, we 

             8    start focusing on the parents, you know, how do 

             9    you go fishing, you know, six steps to go fishing 

            10    that the parents can take.  Just I'm sure there's 

            11    a lot of things we'll start thinking of or you've 

            12    probably thought of, but I'm just not aware of, 

            13    but --

            14                  MR. HALL:  Yeah.  I think what's 

            15    exciting is for the first time, I think we have a 

            16    lot of components in place as an agency and we can 

            17    begin to do some of those kinds of things. 

            18                  COMMISSIONER MONTGOMERY:  And also 

            19    being in the liaison of the foundation, I 

            20    encourage you not to feel limited by money.  I 

            21    think there's a lot of sponsorship money for the 

            22    kind of thing you're doing.  I mean, it's just 

            23    wildly successful. 

            24                  And so I would encourage you to 

            25    think in terms of objectives and target markets of 





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             1    targeted activity, and let's -- we'll have so 

             2    money to spend, but I think if we lay out a plan 

             3    and a strategy and a goal, we can probably raise a 

             4    fair amount of money to support and expand those 

             5    activities, if we put our minds to it and we have 

             6    a clear goal. 

             7                  I think we've got -- you know, we 

             8    all know we've got to address the lack of growth 

             9    of our constituencies during the lack of 

            10    connection, people have an increasing lack of 

            11    connection for the outdoors.  So you've got a big 

            12    job.

            13                  MR. HALL:  Well, that whole outdoor 

            14    kids -- and I have to thank our marketing efforts, 

            15    as well.  The outdoor kids logo, the icon, the 

            16    excitement around outdoor kids, I think, helps us 

            17    package our agency a lot better with respect to 

            18    youth.  So we're going to jump behind that one and 

            19    hopefully steamroll.

            20                  CHAIRMAN HENRY:  Why don't you just 

            21    continue, since you're there.  

            22          AGENDA ITEM NO. 3:  BRIEFING - HUNTER 

            23          EDUCATION.

            24                  MR. HALL:  Okay.  Next, I'd like to 

            25    call up Terry Erwin, who is our hunter education 





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             1    coordinator.  I want to introduce you all to 

             2    Terry.  He does the hunter education program 

             3    coordination day to day.  And the next briefing is 

             4    about hunter education, the 30 years, kind of 

             5    where we've been, where we are, and where we're 

             6    heading.  I'll try to make it quick as possible so 

             7    we don't run out of too much time here.

             8                  Again, the program in Texas is 30 

             9    years and growing.  I'd like to mention that 

            10    hunter education in North America, the first 

            11    mandatory program was actually in 1949, so the 

            12    institution of hunter education is well over 50 

            13    years old.  The purpose is to promote safe, 

            14    responsible, knowledgeable involved hunting and 

            15    shooting practices.  And the benefits, of course, 

            16    are things like reduced hunting accidents, reduced 

            17    violations, the improved image of hunters and 

            18    hunting, which is all too important, and then 

            19    certainly increased hunting opportunities, 

            20    especially for you. 

            21                  We work under an umbrella of the 

            22    International Hunter Education Association.  

            23    That's a professional organization comprised of 

            24    all states, provinces, and even Mexico, and a few 

            25    foreign countries.  They operate under IHA 





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             1    standards that they developed for hunter 

             2    education.  And most of today's standards are a 

             3    minimum two-day, ten-hour curriculum; but mostly 

             4    they are based on learning objectives and 

             5    knowledges and skills. 

             6                  The course topics that are covered 

             7    in hunter education are vast and varied.  

             8    Certainly hunter safety and responsibilities are 

             9    the core, but things like outdoor skills and 

            10    ethics and wildlife management, those kinds of 

            11    things certainly bring the package together in a 

            12    nice way for this agency. 

            13                  Some of the highlights over the 30 

            14    years that we've been in existence, we did start 

            15    the voluntary effort in 1971.  This was primarily 

            16    to certify Texans going out of state to try to 

            17    comply with other states' laws.  Passage of the 

            18    mandatory statute in 1987 which gave it the zeal 

            19    to get kids into the -- at that time into the 

            20    courses. 

            21                  To date, we've certified 600,000 

            22    students.  That's, you know, a lot of effort 

            23    obviously with an average 14-hour course.  And we 

            24    are in the high schools in the ag science 

            25    curriculum, which has been a great thing for both 





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             1    of us.  They improved their -- they upped their 

             2    enrollment.  And we were able to get into the 

             3    school system with what we feel obviously is a 

             4    valuable program.  We have trained about 10,000 

             5    instructors since 1972, and obviously that takes a 

             6    lot of effort, as well.  The effort that they give 

             7    back as volunteers is well over $500,000 of in 

             8    kind service each year; and that can't be taken 

             9    lightly, obviously. 

            10                  The mandatory law, Texas is unique.  

            11    We're the most flexible law in the country.  We're 

            12    the only one to give a five-year window of 

            13    opportunity for somebody to find, take, and pass 

            14    the course.  That's been a real -- in retrospect, 

            15    that's been a real great thing.  In fact, other 

            16    states are now clamoring to figure out how they 

            17    can re-invent their statutes to give it a phase-in 

            18    approach. 

            19                  When I worked in Colorado, to work 

            20    behind the desk before the hunting season, was 

            21    like holding a gun to your head.  I mean, there 

            22    were those pressures.  I think Texas has 

            23    proactively gotten away from those kind of 

            24    pressures.  Still, we have our challenges and I'll 

            25    go over those a little bit later on. 





.
                                                                  22

             1                  But I think we're also a recruitment 

             2    tool.  I think that we promote the fact that a 

             3    ten-year-old can go hunting, but has to be in the 

             4    guidance of that parent or mentor; and that's been 

             5    a good thing for us.  But the law does affect 

             6    everyone born on or after September 2nd, 1971. 

             7                  Over the years, the student numbers 

             8    have climbed.  In fact, we've reached record 

             9    years, the last couple of years which is the good 

            10    news.  There are some variables that are probably 

            11    factors in that, but I think things like marketing 

            12    and awareness have certainly helped us, but also 

            13    the hunting numbers and maybe even the increased 

            14    license sales and those kind of things.  But we're 

            15    up to about an average of 34,000 students 

            16    annually. 

            17                  And the hunting accident picture has 

            18    also reduced since the '60s.  We've cut hunting 

            19    accidents in half, and that's both the injuries 

            20    and the fatalities.  We've got some ways to go 

            21    yet.  We feel that certainly that's a success 

            22    story in North America, the program. 

            23                  Texas has taken the lead and Terry 

            24    has certainly taken the lead on several things, is 

            25    to try to improve the convenience and fun of 





.
                                                                  23

             1    courses, like developing home study and Internet 

             2    materials where they could receive the knowledge 

             3    objectives.  And then to follow up the home study 

             4    and Internet materials with a hunter skills 

             5    course, which is a fun hands-on opportunity not 

             6    only to shoot firearms or sporting arms, but also 

             7    to be tested in the likes of a simulation trail, 

             8    which we call the "hunters safety trail." 

             9                  We developed a brochure that helps 

            10    instructors to set those trails up.  And certainly 

            11    we'd have our home study package that, in 

            12    partnership with Outdoor Life and Nevada Game and 

            13    Fish, that is being sold in Wal-Marts and the 

            14    point of sales in the main stores.  These two 

            15    items have changed the face of hunter education 

            16    North America.  And Terry and Nancy Herron on our 

            17    staff are leading a group internationally to 

            18    develop the same model in North America.  So I 

            19    feel like we've got some leadership obviously 

            20    working at international level in that respect. 

            21                  And certainly we want to tie it in 

            22    with our youth hunting program efforts with Texas 

            23    Wildlife Association and Jerry Warden, and we are 

            24    certainly well connected with their efforts in 

            25    trying to combine the two processes.  And that's 





.
                                                                  24

             1    been, in our eyes, a large success. 

             2                  Some added successes really quick.  

             3    Terry has submitted and has received for the 

             4    volunteer instructors in Texas nine runner-ups and 

             5    two winners of the North American Volunteer 

             6    Instructor of the Year.  Obviously, that shows the 

             7    dedication and commitment and quality of the 

             8    instructors that we have here in Texas.  We've 

             9    hosted two international conferences.  We've been 

            10    president, vice-president of the international 

            11    association. 

            12                  And Terry is -- departs tomorrow for 

            13    his 11th national dream hunt that he helps Wayne 

            14    Pearson host on ESPN.  So that reaches a million 

            15    viewers at minimum.  And certainly that's given 

            16    the program national exposure.  He's also started 

            17    four Texas -- he's held four Texas dream hunts in 

            18    the model that the national produces.  And, again, 

            19    those are kind of recognition opportunities, 

            20    whether they be in front of the media or on TV, 

            21    that gives the hunter education some exposure.

            22                  Our challenges and certainly our -- 

            23    I think, our continued challenge has always been 

            24    and will probably be the course availability, 

            25    where and when people want hunter education.  I 





.
                                                                  25

             1    mean, that's always a challenge, even if it's 

             2    somebody like last week getting on a plane heading 

             3    out and then needing the course at that point.  We 

             4    also had an individual, believe it or not, fly a 

             5    jet plane to Houston this week from Nevada who 

             6    needed the course to hunt in New Mexico. 

             7                  In Texas, I  mean, it's kind of 

             8    bizarre, but that's the kind of pressures that we 

             9    deal with internationally, but also in Texas.  So 

            10    our goal is to make it so convenient and so 

            11    accessible and available by county, and that's a 

            12    lofty goal and we're going it aim for that. 

            13                  The big push this year will be the 

            14    increase of minorities and women as instructors, 

            15    as role models.  I think our outdoor woman program 

            16    has given us a huge boost there.  And certainly 

            17    working with P.O.I.N.T., our regional outreach 

            18    efforts are going to be big; these mini expos, if 

            19    you will, will be big to help us kind of reach 

            20    those people, anybody that is interested or takes 

            21    a keen interest in kids, but also has some kind of 

            22    a hunting prowess and educational mind-set. 

            23                  And finally, the increased 

            24    recruitment into youth hunting opportunities.  I 

            25    think we play a valuable role there.  And I don't 





.
                                                                  26

             1    want to let that pass. 

             2                  That's 30 years in a nutshell.  I 

             3    know that went pretty quick.  Certainly if Terry 

             4    or I can answer any questions, we would be happy 

             5    to do so.

             6                  COMMISSIONER MONTGOMERY:  One of the 

             7    details I've been amazed since coming on the 

             8    commission are the number of people that come up 

             9    to me and tell me they don't take their kids 

            10    hunting because of the time it takes for the 

            11    course.  And it's no reflection on you, I think 

            12    it's an outstanding program.  Sometime in the 

            13    first half of next year, can we have a briefing 

            14    from the point of view of the consumer of all the 

            15    ways you're going to hit that goal and make it 

            16    easy and convenient and still meet the legislative 

            17    objectives.  Because the dramatic antidote, I'll 

            18    tell you very quickly, are a young woman who falls 

            19    under the deadline.  She came up to me and said, 

            20    "Can I go out with my boyfriend when he is 

            21    hunting?"  I said, "Yeah, but don't carry two 

            22    guns."  I said, "Why don't you have a license?"  

            23    She said, "I'm getting married.  I'm working.  I 

            24    don't have this."  She came to us from the CIA and 

            25    doesn't have a hunting license.  But my point is, 





.
                                                                  27

             1    just story after story I've heard since coming on 

             2    the commission, I think we've got a real 

             3    challenge.  I'd like to understand it better and 

             4    have the commission understand it better.  And 

             5    really challenge you-all to find every way 

             6    conceivable to make this easy, quick and 

             7    deliverable.  I know you're working on it and it's 

             8    not an easy one, but I think we've got to attack 

             9    that real hard.  So you can add that to --

            10                  VICE-CHAIR ANGELO:  All you have to 

            11    do is go hunting with somebody with their son or 

            12    daughter that hasn't been through the course and 

            13    you don't want to do it again. 

            14                  COMMISSIONER FITZSIMONS:  That is 

            15    the challenge.  I've been on both sides.  I get 

            16    the same complaints. 

            17                  VICE-CHAIR ANGELO:  I mean, ten 

            18    hours isn't that long.  I mean, really --

            19                  CHAIRMAN IDSAL:  Two days. 

            20                  COMMISSIONER MONTGOMERY:  I'm for 

            21    the course.  I just think we've got a real --

            22                  CHAIRMAN IDSAL:  Mr. Chairman, could 

            23    I ask Steve something?

            24                  CHAIRMAN HENRY:  Please. 

            25                  CHAIRMAN IDSAL:  If I understand it 





.
                                                                  28

             1    correctly, we go through a two-day program in 

             2    order that our hunters can be certified in the 

             3    states, the adjoining states and other states.  Is 

             4    there -- and I've heard this complaint myself. 

             5                  All of a sudden this year, maybe the 

             6    things have kicked in, and all of a sudden 

             7    everybody is having to rush off to get their 

             8    children certified.  And the complaints are just 

             9    pouring in, that try as you might to make this 

            10    subject matter scintillating, two days is a 

            11    hardship to a lot of people.  And it seems to me 

            12    that with these anecdotal reports from friends and 

            13    whatnot that we may be, in fact, discouraging 

            14    hunting.  I hope we don't do that. 

            15                  Is there any way that you can report 

            16    back to us at the next meeting what kind of 

            17    options we might explore that would allow, for 

            18    instance -- this was a proposal a friend put forth 

            19    that I said sounded okay, it sounded reasonable.  

            20    Why can't we have a two-tier system, where if you 

            21    don't have any intention of going elk hunting in 

            22    New Mexico, that you can take a course in Texas 

            23    that would only certify you in Texas and not in 

            24    other states.  But if you were a hunter that liked 

            25    to hunt all over the United States, that you go 





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                                                                  29

             1    ahead and submit to the two-day course and 

             2    therefore are eligible for certification in other 

             3    states.  Is that an option or a possibility or 

             4    worth exploring? 

             5                  COMMISSIONER FITZSIMONS:  Or a class 

             6    1 and class 2. 

             7                  COMMISSIONER MONTGOMERY:  Well, to 

             8    make it a little dramatic -- well, go ahead. 

             9                  MR. HALL:  Well, certainly we've 

            10    scratched our heads at the options.  And I -- it 

            11    sounds easy, but it can be complicated.  For 

            12    example, to receive federal funding, for example, 

            13    you know, the scrutiny of the other states is when 

            14    you drop those whatever standards they set -- I 

            15    mean, they look at you hard.  And Georgia was the 

            16    case in point where states began to turn down any 

            17    card from Georgia that appeared in their state 

            18    because of their substandard six-hour type of a 

            19    course.  And those are kind of the peer-type 

            20    pressures.  With that said, though, I think that 

            21    proactively we've taken this home study and 

            22    Internet materials, and that's a four- to six-hour 

            23    course so we aren't -- we are at the point of 

            24    trying to make this two-tier.  I think we've 

            25    already got that, where they attend a four- to 





.
                                                                  30

             1    six-hour course and can get certification.  

             2    However, that's preceded by the Internet workbook 

             3    or this workbook in the home study --

             4                  CHAIRMAN IDSAL:  Having done a home 

             5    study on driver's ed, it's not any better.  It's 

             6    worse. 

             7                  MR. HALL:  I understand.  There's 

             8    lots of objectives.  Certainly we'll look at the 

             9    options.  And I, for one -- you know, you've got 

            10    both of these scales.  You want to get as much 

            11    knowledge and skills imparted as possible to avert 

            12    what Mr. Angelo said in terms of the downside of 

            13    hunting, you know, the ethics or the bad ethics, 

            14    the bad safety habits, those kind of things. 

            15                  But on the other hand, you want to 

            16    make it convenient and fun.  I think this skills 

            17    course has got instructors that have been involved 

            18    in 30 years, some of the most boring classes that 

            19    you could probably sit through re-energized.  And 

            20    now they're outdoors and they're not in the 

            21    classroom anymore.  And those are the kinds of 

            22    successes I think we need to try to pursue.  But, 

            23    yeah, we'll look at all the options and continue 

            24    to. 

            25                  VICE-CHAIR ANGELO:  How many schools 





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                                                                  31

             1    are teaching it through the ag programs? 

             2                  MR. TERRY:  Approximately 900.

             3                  VICE-CHAIR ANGELO:  That's quite a 

             4    few.  But are we making an effort to expand that?  

             5    If any people are hunting in Midland, I bet we're 

             6    not doing it in any of the Midland schools. 

             7                  MR. TERRY:  I beg to differ with you 

             8    there because there's a gentleman named Jim 

             9    Phillips who is in Midland High School that 

            10    teaches it. 

            11                  VICE-CHAIR ANGELO:  Great.  I hadn't 

            12    even heard about it.  That's good. 

            13                  MR. TERRY:  But fortunately it is in 

            14    a lot more schools than we actually know about.  

            15    We've trained probably over a thousand ag teachers 

            16    and we have about between 850 and 900 right now. 

            17                  VICE-CHAIR ANGELO:  That would be a 

            18    terrific way to make it easier and get more 

            19    involved people involved in it, I would think.

            20                  MR. TERRY:  One of the things that 

            21    we deal with like that is the fact that that is an 

            22    elective course at high school level called 

            23    "Agriculture Science 381," which is wildlife 

            24    management and recreation.  And it being an 

            25    elective course, not everybody gets to take it.  





.
                                                                  32

             1    And unfortunately, not everybody can take it.  But 

             2    fortunately some of the ag teachers do provide 

             3    classes outside the curriculum of their school and 

             4    they'll provide classes for their community, which 

             5    is a real benefit.  Just as a matter of fact, we 

             6    looked yesterday to see how many counties actually 

             7    provided classes throughout the state.  And out of 

             8    254 counties, 240 had classes throughout the 

             9    State.  And I looked at those counties, the 14 

            10    counties that didn't have them, and they were 

            11    either very remotely sparsely populated or they 

            12    lied adjacent to another county with a major city 

            13    where the people drove to that city, like Amarillo 

            14    is part of Randall County on both sides.  And they 

            15    went to those other classes there.  So we're going 

            16    to try to cover a class in every county as 

            17    requested.  And we're doing a pretty good job of 

            18    that right now. 

            19                  COMMISSIONER MONTGOMERY:  Madam 

            20    chairman, I would like to see, though, a 

            21    presentation of all the options we have for making 

            22    this easy, simple, and some numbers behind how 

            23    many kids we're reaching, if that's -- whenever 

            24    y'all choose to put it on the committee agenda.  I 

            25    just get so many comments.  I know it's a tough 





.
                                                                  33

             1    one, it's hard to balance.  It's a lot of issues.  

             2    That's what we're supposed to deal with, to me, is 

             3    policy in this area. 

             4                  CHAIRMAN IDSAL:  Mr. Chairman --

             5                  COMMISSIONER FITZSIMONS:  Mr. 

             6    Chairman -- I'm sorry.

             7                  CHAIRMAN IDSAL:  Go ahead. 

             8                  COMMISSIONER FITZSIMONS:  I heard a 

             9    comment -- I'm not sure I made the connection.  

            10    One was that if we go to two-tier, Texas and to 

            11    cornerphrase, multistate, it's only at the 

            12    multistate where you have the issue of reciprocity 

            13    and having enough hours on the curriculum standard 

            14    of meeting the requirements of being recognized by 

            15    the other states.  Right? 

            16                  MR. HALL:  Yes and no.  I think 

            17    there's a pressure that if Texas has a substandard 

            18    course, and even though --

            19                  COMMISSIONER FITZSIMONS:  I'm 

            20    talking about having two courses.  One is just to 

            21    qualify the person to hunt in Texas, and the other 

            22    is to be recognized.  Is that not practical, to 

            23    have those two? 

            24                  MR. HALL:  The complication comes 

            25    when you have a student that, for all practical 





.
                                                                  34

             1    purposes, thinks they're just going to hunt in 

             2    Texas and five years later they decide to go to 

             3    Colorado. 

             4                  COMMISSIONER FITZSIMONS:  Well, then 

             5    they have to take the other course.

             6                  CHAIRMAN IDSAL:  They have to take 

             7    the second half of the course.

             8                  MR. HALL:  Okay.  Then the two 

             9    certification cards is what you're talking about? 

            10                  COMMISSIONER FITZSIMONS:  Yeah, 

            11    that's what I'm talking about.  Two classes.  I 

            12    mean, I look at it as a pilot in terms of -- you 

            13    know, you have a private, then you get your 

            14    instrument.  You know when you don't have the 

            15    other.

            16                  CHAIRMAN IDSAL:  Mr. Chairman, I 

            17    think time is pressing on us, but I want to ask 

            18    Mr. Hall another question. 

            19                  Is there any way that we -- or any 

            20    forum where we will be meeting with other states 

            21    in the near future to discuss this kind of thing? 

            22                  MR. HALL:  We have two forums with 

            23    all the coordinators, a list, and then the annual 

            24    conference which comes up in May of 2002.

            25                  CHAIRMAN IDSAL:  Well, it might be 





.
                                                                  35

             1    something to look out going down the road.  I've 

             2    talked to members of the hunting advisory 

             3    committee off the record and over cocktails.  This 

             4    is a subject that keeps coming up as an issue.  

             5    And I think we ought to take it seriously and see 

             6    if we can't get creative and figure out a good way 

             7    to deal with it.

             8                  MR. HALL:  There's also a voucher 

             9    approach -- just an FYI, a voucher approach where 

            10    you can hunt for a day or weekend to try it out 

            11    type of thing. 

            12                  CHAIRMAN HENRY:  Any other 

            13    questions?  Thank you, gentlemen.

            14                  We had another report coming from 

            15    Dr. McKinney, but I'm going to ask that we can 

            16    hold that until the next meeting.  It has to do 

            17    with status report on outreach and plans for the 

            18    near future.  So if you don't mind, Dr. McKinney, 

            19    would you mind holding out? 

            20                  MR. McKINNEY:  That's fine. 

            21                  CHAIRMAN HENRY:  Is there anything 

            22    else that needs to come before the committee?  

            23    Thank you, Madam Chairman.  We have finished. 

            24                  CHAIRMAN IDSAL:  I believe that 

            25    concludes all the committee meetings, so this 





.
                                                                  36

             1    meeting is adjourned. 

             2                         *-*-*-*-*

             3                   (MEETING ADJOURNED.)

             4                         *-*-*-*-*

             5    

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                                                                  37

             1                 REPORTER'S CERTIFICATE

             2    STATE OF TEXAS   )

             3    COUNTY OF TRAVIS )

             4             I, MELODY RENEE DeYOUNG, a Certified 

             5    Court Reporter in and for the State of Texas, do 

             6    hereby certify that the above and foregoing 35 

             7    pages constitute a full, true and correct 

             8    transcript of the minutes of the Texas Parks & 

             9    Wildlife Commission on NOVEMBER 7, 2001, in the 

            10    commission hearing room of the Texas Parks & 

            11    Wildlife Headquarters Complex, Austin, Travis 

            12    County, Texas.

            13             I FURTHER CERTIFY that a stenographic 

            14    record was made by me at the time of the public 

            15    meeting and said stenographic notes were 

            16    thereafter reduced to computerized transcription 

            17    under my supervision and control.

            18             WITNESS MY HAND this the 9th day of 

            19    January, 2002. 

            20    
                  
            21                                                     
                           MELODY RENEE DeYOUNG, RPR, CSR NO. 3226
            22             Expiration Date:  12-31-02
                           3101 Bee Caves Road
            23             Centre II, Suite 220
                           Austin, Texas  78746
            24             (512) 328-5557
                  
            25    






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