The following is reprinted from a Michigan Department of Natural Resources press release issued last December. MEC encourages all Michiganders to support wildlife conservation by making a donation to the nongame fund and attending the DNR’s Dec. 9 gala dinner to celebrate the 40th anniversary of Michigan’s Endangered Species Act. Read our recent blog post for more information on the dinner and nongame wildlife management in Michigan.
This is the time of year when charities and other nonprofit organizations remind citizens that they can lower their tax bills by donating to these organizations. The Department of Natural Resources can say the same: contributions to Michigan’s Nongame Fish and Wildlife Fund are tax-deductible and the fund is what provides state officials with the money to manage the 80 percent of wildlife species in this state that are not hunted or trapped. (Game species are managed with revenue from license sales.)
Celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, the Nongame Fish and Wildlife Fund has changed in several ways since its inception in 1983, though the three main goals remain the same:
• To restore populations of endangered species;
• To maintain healthy populations of animals and plants; and
• To promote — through education and first-hand opportunities to experience wildlife — appreciation for and awareness of Michigan’s diverse wildlife.
When it was first created, the nongame fund raised money through a check-off on the state income tax return. The check-off was discontinued in the 1990s when the fund reached $6 million. The fund continues to generate revenue from interest on the balance, by voluntary contributions, and, of course, the purchase of “Conserve Wildlife Habitat” license plates (Look for the Loon!).
Since its beginning, the Nongame Fish and Wildlife Fund has raised some $9.5 million to support conservation. Read more