Layoffs Expected After Legislature Slashes Wildlife Agency Budget

North Carolina legislators are eyeing a $9 million cut to the state wildlife agency’s budget due to economic struggles, a move that would result in layoffs within the agency.

The $9 million cuts would be for each of the next two years and would be almost half its funding. The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission handles hunting, hunter education, boating boater education, state game lands and myriad other outdoors-related tasks.
Republican legislators looking to trim the budget didn’t overlook the WRC.

“This is the toughest one,” said six-term Sen. Andrew Brock, a Republican who represents Davie, Iredell and Rowan counties. Brock said he hoped the money could be restored to the budget after the economy improves.

“When you’ve got support for hunting and fishing like you do now in the General Assembly, we’ll try to get that back as soon as possible,” he said in this Raleigh News & Observer report. “But with prisons closing down, and no one getting a great project built anywhere, we looked at each other and said, ‘We all suffer in this one.’ ”

A plan to raid a wildlife endowment fund set up for use in the future was thwarted after stiff opposition.

Read the full report here.