An effort to allow the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission to raise user fees gets tied up with mountain lion hunting before eventually advancing.
Sen. John McCollister of Omaha defends his bill, LB 745, against a filibuster mounted by Sen. Ernie Chambers of Omaha, who remains upset with Game and Parks for allowing a mountain lion hunting season.
McCollister tells colleagues between 20-to-24 mountain lions live in the Pine Ridge region alone without a count on two other regions in Nebraska where cougars likely live.
“Game and Parks has done a good job with that population,” McCollister tells colleagues during legislative floor debate. “Yes, we’ve had one hunting season, but they among all of us hear want to see the mountain lion flourish in this state and I’m positive they’ll do a good job managing that population.”
Chambers rips Game and Parks for allow mountain lions to be hunted, especially through the use of hunting dogs and vows to never let it happen again.
“They are not going to have a hunting season while I’m in the legislature,” Chambers declares.
Chambers finds few legislators to back his filibuster. Legislators end the extended debate on a 42-2 vote, then advance LB 745 on a 39-to-3 vote. The bill would give Game and Parks authority to increase 29 user fees and permits.