Fish and Game Commission
Wednesday, May 4, 2016
The Idaho Fish and Game Commission was created by public initiative in 1938. Commissioners are appointed by the Governor (no more than four may be from the same political party) for staggered four-year terms. Each commissioner is confirmed by the Idaho State Senate. In 1996, the Senate approved adding a seventh district to the existing six to meet the needs of Idaho's regions. The seven commissioners, each representing a different region of the state, are responsible for administering the fish and game policy of the state as described in state code section 36-103:
WILDLIFE PROPERTY OF STATE - PRESERVATION
(a) Wildlife Policy. All wildlife, including all wild animals, wild birds, and fish, within the state of Idaho, is hereby declared to be the property of the state of Idaho. It shall be preserved, protected, perpetuated, and managed. It shall be only captured or taken at such times or places, under such conditions, or by such means, or in such manner, as will preserve, protect, and perpetuate such wildlife, and provide for the citizens of this state and, as by law permitted to others, continued supplies of such wildlife for hunting, fishing and trapping.
To be appointed, commissioners must be a bona fide resident of the region from which they are appointed, and be well informed and interested in wildlife conservation and restoration. During their terms, commissioners may not hold any other elective or appointive office.
By law, commissioners must meet in January, April, July and October of each year. In recent years the complexity of wildlife and fisheries management has made it necessary to hold special sessions in addition to the quarterly meetings.
Major duties and responsibilities of the commission are to supervise the Department of Fish and Game; establish regulations and other needed controls on fishing, hunting, trapping and management of wildlife in line with the state's wildlife policy; approve department budgets for submission to the legislature; hold public hearings and make decisions on the management of the state's wildlife.