The Warden's Words
Special license available for disabled hunters
Over the past several weeks I have had many disabled folks contact me regarding the renewal of their special licenses. I have had other contacts by folks wanting to know how to go about getting a disabled license, where to go for one and how does one qualify. Well I am going to try and answer those questions.
First, what qualifies one for a disabled license? In the Big Game Regulations under the resident license section there is a section called Special Resident Permits. Under this section is the official definition of a disabled person. You must qualify for SSI or SSDI; RR retirement board disability; DAV; a non-service connected veterans pension; or a service connected veterans disability benefit with at least 40% disability. These are the disabilities that are considered. Each of these disabilities comes with an official document that you receive yearly or you have documentation of the benefit. Second, normally the F&G Department required that you contact our CD’A Regional office in order to obtain this license. However, they realized this could place an undue hardship on some folks so they have set up two vendors in the Sandpoint area that can take your application and issue a license. This helps keep things at a local level. The two vendors are K-Mart and Wal-Mart. Third, in order for the vendors to process your request you must bring your supporting documentation with you when applying. Don’t bring last year’s license because that is not what is required. Remember they are doing this for your convenience so be patient. So, for you folks that qualify for a disabled license let’s go get it and I will look forward to checking you out fishing or hunting.
Another call I get at my house from many folks is “just what can be done about the Bullwinkle living in my driveway? No matter what I do I cannot seem to make him go away.” Well, my pat answer to this question is usually “enjoy and get some great pictures.” Sometimes that is not enough when your vehicle and the moose are trying to fit into the same area. Many folks tell me that they shot their gun in the air but the moose didn’t pay attention. Others send their dog out-the moose promptly sends the dog back. I guess I don’t have a tried and true solution. I always looked at it as one of the great perks for living where we do. I had a cow and calf bedded in my yard the other morning and when I wanted to leave the cow took exception. Well, back inside I went and several minutes later mom and son moseyed down the drive and into the trees. God, I love living in the country. How do you explain that to city folk??
Winter has returned in full force it seems, but the area wildlife are over the hump as far as their condition. Animals that are being salvaged are still in great shape. The critters I observe while snowmobiling are still fat and sassy. That reminds me. Please be extra careful when out snowmobiling due to the extra avalanche danger. I noticed our local snow groomer, Vern Harvey, has been in the Hope and Clark Fork area lately. Glad to see him back in the saddle again as he had some tense moments involving the new groomer and an avalanche. I understand there are several new pucker marks on his seat.
Fishing has been pretty slow along the river, but boat anglers have been doing well on the Macks. I noticed that a crew of folks had gone up to Antelope Lake last weekend to ice fish. Several folks indicated that the ice fishing on Cocolalla Lake has been relatively slow. Because of the time of the year most Wardens try to take some of their overtime hours off. I feel a little blind because I am not “out there” seeing what is going on.
I need to finish this and get some real work done. So please be careful. Enjoy what we have, enjoy it with a kid and leave it better than when you found it.