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S. 1514 (115th): HELP for Wildlife Act

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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Jun 29, 2017.

Hunting Heritage and Environmental Legacy Preservation for Wildlife Act or the HELP for Wildlife Act

This bill revises a variety of existing programs to expand access to, and opportunities for, hunting, fishing, and recreational shooting.

The bill reauthorizes through FY2022 the North American Wetlands Conservation Act, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Establishment Act, the Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Act, and the Chesapeake Bay Program. It also reauthorizes through FY2023 the Chesapeake Bay Gateways and Watertrails Network and the Chesapeake Bay Gateways Grants Assistance Program.

The proportion of funding from the Pittman-Robertson Wildlife Restoration Act that states may use for public target ranges is increased.

The bill revises standards for determining what a baited area is for purposes of the prohibition on taking migratory game birds.

The Department of the Interior must reissue two rules that removed protections under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 for the gray wolf populations located in the western Great Lakes (all of Wisconsin, Michigan, and Minnesota, as well as portions of North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio) and Wyoming. Interior's prior rules that removed the protections were overruled by district courts.

Components of firearms and ammunition and sport fishing equipment and its components (such as lead sinkers) are exempted from regulations of chemical substances under the Toxic Substances Control Act.

The National Fish Habitat Board is established to: (1) promote, oversee, and coordinate the implementation of the National Fish Habitat Action Plan; (2) establish national goals and priorities for fish habitat conservation; (3) recommend the designation of Fish Habitat Partnerships; and (4) review and make recommendations regarding fish habitat conservation projects.