Adjusting the official name of the California Department of Fish and Game to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife is no insignificant effort. The move will cost California taxpayers approximately $300,000 and it also alludes to the evolving mission of the department, according to state officials.

Originally established as the Board of the Fish Commissioners in 1870, the agency expanded to include game animals in 1878. In 1909 the name of the agency was changed to the Fish and Game Commission, then again to Division of Fish and Game in 1927 and finally elevated to the Department of Fish and Game in 1951.

For 61 years it stayed that way until Governor Jerry Brown signed legislation changing the name last week to indicate that many more non-game animal species fall under the jurisdiction of the agency, a move embraced by environmentalists and animal rights activists. The bill also allows the newly-renamed department to widen the spectrum of fees it may collect, outside of the “traditional” methods of fund-raising through hunting and fishing licenses.

Sportsmens’ groups have taken two sides to this change. President of the California Outdoor Heritage Alliance, Bill Gaines, said hunters were outnumbered, that they weren’t adequately represented in the department’s makeover. Mike Faw, a spokesman for the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance told The Reporter in Vacaville, California, “generally, that means a shift toward butterflies, endangered species and other stuff like that.”

Spokeswoman for Ducks Unlimited Wendy Hopkins believes the move will not hamper waterfowl hunting under the department’s new mission. She said there is adequate protection built into state law that prevents money raised from hunting and fishing licenses to be used for other purposes.

The $300,000 will mostly go toward renewing departmental websites and computer systems, while changing names on apparel, license forms and other logos will be gradually used up and replaced when the time comes as part of normal functioning costs. The change goes into effect January 1, 2013.

Image courtesy of the California Department of Fish and Game

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5 thoughts on “California Governor Signs Costly Legislation on Game Department Name Change

  1. How about if we just deed California to Mexico. It’s mostly their citizens and it’s being run like a third-world Crapistan. Moon-Beam Brown just loves spending OPM (other peoples money.)

  2. For a state that is broke, nothing like spending over $300K dollars to change ‘game’ to ‘wildlife’. Letterheads, uniforms, signs, truck decals, and many more such items will have to changed. Does anybody fail to see why this state is in the condition it is in?

  3. Some of you are scratching your heads, wondering what would possess the California Fish and Game to change their name, especially after operating for decades with their current name. The truth is, California Fish and Game left their mission over thirty years ago, when predator promotion became their #1 mission. Mountain lion protections could have easily been changed with sound science, and the Department could have used their strength and reputation to stop this disastrous predator pimping. The bear population in California is also out of control, yet the Department regulates the harvest numbers as if the bear population is static. California Fish No Game department is not much different than many of the Western Fish and Game Departments, who are working behind the scenes for this name change/mission change, Once the name is changed, the flood gates will open for their non consumptive management strategy, which will ultimately end hunting. This type of thinking is spawned at the University level, and pushed by the Human Dimension segments within the departments in every state.The Western Association of Wildlife Managers is the nesting grounds for this agenda, and when these people meet, they collectively concoct these type of schemes. Massive efforts are under way in many states to end the current management practices, which have been successful for 75 + years, and in the case of California, this trial balloon has been launched to test the reaction of the weakest hunting community in the country. It is working, due to apathy within the states hunting communities, and with a large segment of those hunters traveling out of state for their big game pursuits, they will do nothing to save their own state. Wake up folk, they are planning this in every state.

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