National Fish and Wildlife Foundation reauthorization : hearing before the Subcommittee on Environment and Natural Resources of the Committee on Merchant Marine and Fisheries, House of Representatives, One Hundred Third Congress, first session, on reauthorizing the National Fish and Wildlife Foundat online

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The fact that the Fish and Wildlife Foundation has been such a
success points to the fact there was a real need for this type of or-
ganization. I think there was a real willingness for the private
sector to pool their resources in this fashion.

Wildlife conservation is continuing to emerge as something the
public strongly supports. The Foundation was very helpful in pro-
viding funding that turned out to be cutting-edge-type funding to
start new initiatives like the neotropical bird work.

So I think, as much as anything else, their instincts were good in
looking over the horizon and seeing the next emerging issue — get-
ting ahead of the curve — and putting their money out there where
it was able to attract significant additional resources from the pri-
vate sector.

So I think it was a combination of their spending a lot of time
thinking about the issues that are coming as opposed to issues that
are here right now, and their being persuasive in coalition build-
ing. Those are the various factors that have been the most impor-

Mr. HocHBRUECKNER. Thank you.

Mr. Eno.

Mr. Eno. I think several points could be made, Mr. Chairman.

First, in terms of the Park Foundation, of the various clones of
which there are four, the Park Foundation preceded the Fish and
Wildlife Foundation by about 15 years. They are distinguished in
that they do not get Federal funds. So they are strictly a private
fund-raising enterprise.

More directly to answer your question, I think the Foundation
did a couple of things right from the very beginning. First of all,
we attempted to create an honest, credible, supportive relationship
with our host agency, the Fish and Wildlife Service and expanded
that to other agencies. Meanwhile, we maintained our independ-

This has been a problem with a lot of other clones. They have
not — they have not clearly established their independence vis-a-vis
their agency yet or been able to benefit through performance of
grant making that they are supportive of the basic mission of the


Secondly, we started out in the first year with a comprehensive
analysis of what the major problems facing the Fish and Wildlife
Service were and what we could do about them, what we, the Foun-
dation, could take on.

For example, out of that analysis we identified implementing the
North American Waterfowl Management Plan which had been just
signed by the Secretary of Interior and Canadian counterparts but
basically was then just quickly on its route to a shelf. So we took
that on.

Secondly, part of that analysis also looked at the agency and rec-
ognized that most Federal agencies — most institutions tend to be
fairly embalmed in their own culture, and they don't look outside
that culture.

We looked at the Fish and Wildlife Service and then looked at
how we could solve their problems interrelating with State agen-
cies and the private sector, turning the envelope inside out instead
of focusing just on the Fish and Wildlife Service. That has created
a very creative synergism.

Thirdly, we took to heart some of your original legislation that
required Federal money to be matched. We could have just operat-
ed on the basis of a one-to-one match but match, but we, basically,
as we started operating saw an opportunity there and decided to
increase the leverage. And, actually, in one of your reauthorization
bills several years ago, the House required a two-to-one match. Al-
though that was not passed, we took it to heart, and so we have
been aggressively leveraging our money wherever possible, particu-
larly with organizations like The Nature Conservancy and Ducks
Unlimited that have well-developed fund-raising arms.

At the same time, with grants with little organizations, mom and
pop operations, organizations just getting started, we give them a
one-to-one match to get them going. If we come back for more, we
increase the leverage.

Finally, we just have really pushed the whole concept of partner-
ship as far as we possibly can. There is a lot of rhetoric that goes
back and forth about working together, but natural resource prob-
lems are inherently controversial. Any time you create a park or
refuge or set up a regulation you are prohibiting somebody from
doing something. So the more players you get involved in the
project on a consensual basis and get them to invest dollars takes
them to a totally new level of commitment in terms of seeing some-
thing through and in solving the problem.

Mr. HocHBRUECKNER. Mr. Myers.

Mr. Myers. I can't speak to the effectiveness of the National
Parks Foundation but in looking at the effectiveness of the Nation-
al Fish and Wildlife Foundation I believe it has to do with what
Mr. Barry said, their ability to scan the horizon, see the emerging
issues, see where fish and wildlife activities should be heading in
this country and get out front and try to pull programs that direc-
tion, I think that has been key.

Another factor is the integrity of the people involved in the pro-
gram and their ability. They deliver. They are can-do people. You
enjoy working with them, and they don't let you down.

Mr. Hochbrueckner. Thank you, Mr. Myers.

Mr. Dennis.


Mr. Dennis. Thank you.

I am not going to comment on the National Parks Foundation
other than to say there is a major difference in that the Fish and
WildUfe Foundation does receive Federal financing. But it goes a
lot further than that.

First of all, the Foundation has received very strong support
from the Committee over the years which has been essential to its

Secondly, I personally have been very impressed with the way
the Fish and Wildlife Foundation works with its host agency, with
the Fish and Wildlife Service. The needs assessment they do with
the Fish and Wildlife Service, rather than something that could be
perceived as threatening, is probably one of the more useful tools
the Fish and Wildlife Service has. It shows what works well, helps
them identify new programs and expands the ability of the Fish
and Wildlife Service to get the job done through the programs and
projects funded through the Fish and Wildlife Foundation.

Also, the Foundation is very careful to try to supplement other
conservation efforts in many instances, and we have been the bene-
ficiary of that, as has the Fish and Wildlife Service and all the

Once again, back to the leverage factor, the fact that the Founda-
tion encourages leverage instead of going out and matching one to
one as required by law — they don't require it, but something is
working right when they get people to match on a two-to-one basis.

Finally, I think the human resource at the Fish and Wildlife
Service is outstanding. As Gary said, these are people you can deal
with straight up. They are nonpartisan. They want to get the job

Mr. HocHBRUECKNER. Thank you, Mr. Dennis.

Mr. Sutherland.

Mr. Sutherland. I will start where Mike stopped.

One of the things that we have experienced in our work with the
Foundation is they are aggressive, they are proactive, they come to
you with ideas, and, perhaps most importantly, they are willing to
work out the wrinkles.

If we bring a project to them or they bring one to us that is a
possible partnership, their folks are willing to negotiate with you
about ways it can be improved for their purposes, for our purposes,
et cetera, and that is a very important, necessary element of part-

Briefly, also, I will say I don't know about the National Parks
Foundation, but one of the things involved in this subject area,
wildlife, is that there is a great history in this country of wildlife
users being contributors to the resources, whether they are con-
sumptive users or nonconsumptive wildlife users, buying duck
stamps, waterfowl stamps, and in several other ways not required
of users of wildlife. For example, where they have over the last 90
years contributed millions and millions and millions of dollars to
the National Wildlife Refuge Foundation system and other conser-
vation efforts in the country.

Within Ducks Unlimited over the past 55 years we have raised
three-quarters of a billion dollars. That is money they didn't have
to donate, but that gives us money to match with the Fish and


Wildlife Foundation and get good things done. I don't know that
that kind of commitment is demonstrated to the National Parks
Foundation, by the park users or those kind of folks. I think that is
an important element of the success.

Mr. HocHBRUECKNER. Thank you, Mr. Sutherland.

Before I get to individual questions, on behalf of Chairman
Studds I would like to defer to my colleagues.

Governor, if you have any questions you are on.

Mr. Castle. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

I will be brief and ask in two reasons: One, I am more here to
learn; and, secondly, I am late for my next scheduled appointment.
So I don't want to ask too much.

I would like to start by saying I am very impressed with the Na-
tional Fish and Wildlife Foundation, much more so than most
agencies involved with government at all for a variety of reasons.
One is the leveraged matched funding which I think is vitally im-
portant as a source of energy as well as a source of funds in terms
of keeping the organization going.

Secondly, in Delaware we have stressed land acquisition in Dela-
ware and I think on a per-acre basis probably acquired as much
land for various uses all the way from park land to migratory bird
uses as any State in the country, and a lot of it has been with the
help of a lot of your organizations. Bombay Hook and others come
to mind.

As you know, we are very involved both in the fishery questions
and also very involved with the migratory birds as the biggest stop-
over on the east coast I believe as they go from south to north and
north to south. We consider that to be an important function. We
have some major contributors to your organizations which would
help as well.

I guess my question really is — I was curious about this. Appar-
ently, you want to expand the board from 9 to 15. I think there is a
couple vacancies now, too. I am curious how vacancies are filled. If
you are so successful, why expand it? Why not leave it as it is?

Mr. Eno. The real value of expanding the Board of Directors is
in helping the operations side of the Foundation. As I stressed in
my testimony, none of the Federal grant moneys goes to support
the Foundation's day-to-day operations — Federal funding for the
Foundation ceased after the first two-and-a-half years of our exist-
ence. So we have to raise the $2 million a year that it costs to run
and do the day-to-day business of the Foundation from private

We need a board that contributes to that end, and we do have a
couple of vacancies now. Several of our board by law are designat-
ed as educated and experienced. These tend to be people involved
in the wildlife profession or educational profession who are often
without substantial financial means, which effectively means that
a significant portion of the board cannot either write large checks
or is not particularly adept at fund raising.

For the last two years the staff has raised about 95 percent of
the operating funds of the Foundation. Now, we could continue on
that basis, but — speaking from a staff perspective, we feel that if
we got more support from our board, an enlarged board, we could
put more of our time into working with our partners to raise funds


to support grants for conservation projects on the ground. For the
long-term that, is a healthier environment.

Mr. Castle. Thank you.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I apologize for having to leave early.

Mr. HocHBRUECKNER. Thank you. Governor.

Mr. Hamburg.

Mr. Hamburg. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I apologize for being
late, but just with what I have heard and what I have been able to
read I am really impressed with what this Foundation does.

There are several things that you are working on that are of spe-
cial interest to me representing the north coast of California. I
would like to ask if I could, Mr. Eno, if you could just give me a
little more information about the Marbled Murrelet and Spotted
Owl. It looks like the prey research for the Spotted Owl is done in
Humboldt County.

Mr. Eno. Both of those projects, I believe, have been cornpleted.
They were done several years ago. They were sort of behind the
major curve that is propelling the controversy on owls, murrelets
and old growth.

Both of these were research projects identified by both the Fish
and Wildlife Service and the forest products industry as problem
areas, and we gave a grant to respond to those concerns. And the
matching funds for both projects came from the forest products in-
dustry, from NCASI. They basically have been completed.

We have done a lot of other projects. Most of our other projects
in northern California have focused on the salmon recovery.

Mr. Hamburg. I was going to ask you about that next.

I was looking over this Bring Back the Natives prograrn and
wonder if you would comment on that more, and specifically if you
would comment on why this program is so important. Why is
bringing back the natives so important as to opposed to relying pri-
marily on hatchery fish?

You may know that we had a particularly disastrous situation
this year on the north coast, the second consecutive year we have
had the northern California salmon fishery completely close down
this time due to the — actually, the last two years due to the prob-
lematic status of the fall run Chinook salmon. And what we are
trying to do on both the Klamath and Trinity systems and Sacra-
mento system is bring back the natives and not rely completely on
the hatchery fishery, although there are hatcheries that can posi-
tively impact this industry.

Could you comment on this program and why it is so important
to bring back the native stocks?

Mr. Eno. I will, if you permit me to sort of be fairly general. The

Mr. Hamburg. OK. I just want to get something on the record.

Mr. Eno. The history of fishery management in this country is
this: once a river is pretty well ruined for native species, we have
tended to build a hatchery that dumps fish back in the river or spe-
cific segments of the river. So what you are doing in terms of con-
servation is managing small blocks of a degraded watershed, and
really none of the Federal or State agencies over the last 70 years
have looked at restoring native fisheries on a watershed basis from
the Rocky Mountains or from the tip of the Sierras to the ocean.


The Bring Back the Natives program we started with the Forest
Service and the Bureau of Land Management. The Forest Service
tends to own the high ground, and the Bureau of Land Manage-
ment usually picks up the lower ground as the river goes toward
the sea.

For the first time, we got them to start managing whole
stretches of river, 30 miles, 60 miles, 70 miles and often with many
other partners like the Fish and Wildlife Service, the State agency,
Trout Unlimited, et cetera, with the aim of restoring the native
fishery. Very often, hatcheries are returning genetically imperfect,
weaker stocks, weaker fish, and they compete for food. But the
long-term consequences — and the jury is not totally out — but there
is enough information on the table to show that very often hatch-
ery fish may be further complicating and creating more deleterious
problems for your native fishery than they are solving.

So our Bring Back the Natives — I don't have the map, but I can
provide it — includes several California rivers. We are bringing an-
other grant to our Board in two weeks, I believe, specifically target-
ing restoration of salmon in northern California, and we have done
several other grants in your district.

Mr. Hamburg. Well, let me just say that I heartily support your

And as you were talking I was also wondering if you have been
involved at all in the situation around Dunsmuir where we had the
sodium spill at the Kantara Loop and we lost all the native fish,
and there was a controversy whether to restock with hatchery fish
or bring back the natives.

The railroad company. Southern Pacific, has of course been
saying we can restock as part of the Sacramento and that will
bring back the tourism industry. But there is an awfully strong
movement in California saying, even if we have to wait a little
longer it is important to get the fish that belong in this stream re-
covered and restored.

Mr. Eno. We are not, to my knowledge, involved in Dunsmuir at
this point.

I want to stress if you have something or a project you think we
ought to be involved in, pick up the phone.

To give you an example, two years ago I was up at Orvis, and the
Orvis people had just come back from assisting in making Robert
Bedford's movie that was supposed to be filmed in the Blackfoot.
They did not actually film the Blackfoot because it was in such de-
graded state. Bedford's producer and Orvis came to us and said, is
there any way we can work on restoration of the Blackfoot?

Basically, we responded — within a month-and-a-half time, we
cobbled together the Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management,
Fish and Wildlife, the State of Montana, the local Trout Unlimited
chapter that took the lead in organizing local participants and we
gave about a $500,000 grant for cleaning up and restoring the
upper five reaches of the Blackfoot for the first on-the-ground
effort to attempt restoration of that entire drainage system. That
project is ongoing.

Mr. Hamburg. Well, I really congratulate you for your efforts
and thank all the panelists for coming this morning.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.


Mr. HocHBRUECKNER. The Chair thanks the gentleman from

The first question is for Mr. Barry.

The draft bill proposes increasing board members to 15, and —
however, as was pointed out, there are two vacancies today that
are taking some time to fill. When can the Committee expect to see
those vacancies filled?

Mr. Barry. The Department currently has under consideration
various names that have been submitted to it for selection and
nomination by the Secretary. I can't give you a specific time. We
are very much aware of the deadline that is looming with the up-
coming board meeting. I think it is just a matter of looking for a
good mix to provide a good balance to the board.

We certainly appreciate the need for getting good board members
that will be strong supporters of the Foundation's work. I think, as
much as an3d:hing else, we are basically trying to find out who are
the candidates that would serve successfully in the capacities that
Amos talked about, in terms of fund raising and bringing expertise
and skills to the board.

It is a priority for us. It is just a matter of trying to get on the
Secretary's calendar, which has been fairly overloaded with forest
work, grazing, and mining reform, but it is certainly one of the top

Mr. Hochbrueckner. Mr. Eno, with the potential expansion of
the board from 9 to 15, what would you say has been the history in
the past in terms of making appointments? How long does it usual-
ly take and what would you anticipate assuming that we did go to
15? How long would it take to get up to 15 in your view?

Mr. Eno. Well, it took the Secretary of Interior originally almost
two years to appoint a board. After that, most of the vacancies
have been filled within a month to two-month period. All I can say
in terms of the present circumstances, I think once you pass the
legislation the Secretary would have this as a priority, and I would
hope he would fill the vacancies within a month or so.

Mr. Hochbrueckner. Thank you.

Mr. Myers, your testimony suggests that the addition of a State
Fish and Wildlife Agency representative to the Foundation's Board
of Directors would be an improvement. Has the lack of a State rep-
resentative hindered the effectiveness of the Foundation in the
past in your view?

Mr. Myers. I am really not in a position to know. I don't attend
their board meetings. I don't know what the dialog has been. I
can't say that the Foundation has not been a tremendous success
without a State director on their board.

Common sense tells me that because they do much business with
the States, they could use insight into problems faced in the wild-
life and fisheries fields. A director would provide a sounding board
for other members of the board on certain issues, for example,
"back to the natives" issues and things of that nature.

Mr. Eno. May I speak to that for a second, Mr. Chairman?

Mr. Hochbrueckner. Yes.

Mr. Eno. We originally had Willie Molini from Nevada on our
board. He was superb.


We had a mix of board members. Many of the early members —
David Packard, John Bookout — they were major corporate titans,
and they do not really know the ins and outs of State fish and
game agencies which operate under a number of constraints and
political situations. For example, many report to commissions, and
there are a number of complexities to the way they do business.

We have used and continue to use State directors at the staff
level. We pick up the phone and work with them as much has we
can. But there is a very real value in having a State director in the
board meeting who can speak to questions or clarify issues for the
benefit of other board members whose business backgrounds have
not given them a glimpse of the operations of State agencies.

Mr. HocHBRUECKNER. Thank you.

For Mr. Dennis and Mr. Sutherland, you both draw complimen-
tary pictures of the Foundation. Given your individual experiences,
how would you prioritize the grant-making facilities of the Founda-
tion? And do you have specific criticisms or suggestions?

Mr. Dennis.

Mr. Dennis. OK. I don't have any criticisms of how they estab-
lish their priorities. I think they have that under control.

I would like to go back to the issue, if it is OK to talk more about
the board makeup. That is the area where I have expertise in 20
years with The Nature Conservancy in our State chapters and
what not.

I think it is important to emphasize that one of the things that I
have seen with regard to expanding the size of the board to 15,
when you look at a board you are looking for what they used to
call the three W's: work, wisdom and wealth. I think the work is
covered pretty well by the staff, but the wisdom and wealth is
where these other issues come in, where it is important to have a
balance between people who have expertise in the area.

The idea of having people educated in fish and wildlife, having a
State fish and — at least one fish and game director is very impor-

Secondly, when you talk about the wealth factor, it is very im-
portant in an organization like this to have a board you can rely on
to raise money for you. This is a tremendous burden on the staff to
go out and raise operational funds. The board should be doing that.

That is my personal view, but I think others share that.

The other factor is an organization that tries to cover all the
United States and other parts of North America. 9 to 15 may sound
like a big jump, but it really isn't. You have to have geographic
representation. Nine people doesn't give you the people to cover
the full region.

I just want to go back and once again really urge the Commit-
tee — I know it is in the proposal, but that is a very important part
of this legislation, the expansion.

Mr. Hochbrueckner. Thank you.

Mr. Sutherland.

Mr. Sutherland. I will echo Mike's comments on not having
comments or suggestions in their priorities.

I think they have done an excellent job. They have a very, very
diverse portfolio, and if I was going to think of one thing they


might look at, through the board, is in making an effort to try to
include an increased variety of groups in certain projects.

A lot of the partnerships that are done are done with one or two
organizations with substantial financial might like TNC, DU, and I
think they have worked on this in the past and have been success-
ful. But I think their board needs to be aware and make an in-
creased effort perhaps to involve local partners in some of the
kinds of projects that we are doing with them. I think that would
be an added benefit to the program.

But, like I say, that is a footnote. They are doing a very, very
good job and have done a good job.

I also would echo Mike on the board, the commitments of their
board. One of the advantages for adding the members to their
board will be to get some more diversity on their board and to

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Online LibraryUnknownNational Fish and Wildlife Foundation reauthorization : hearing before the Subcommittee on Environment and Natural Resources of the Committee on Merchant Marine and Fisheries, House of Representatives, One Hundred Third Congress, first session, on reauthorizing the National Fish and Wildlife Foundat → online text (page 3 of 14)