This week the Sportsmen’s Alliance was notified by the Washington Attorney General’s Office that it will appeal the lower court ruling that Lorna Smith was violating state statute by holding an incompatible appointed office while serving as a fish and wildlife commissioner. The AG’s office is seeking review of the judicial order by the Washington Supreme Court.
The Sportsmen’s Alliance filed suit against Smith in March of this year based on the prohibition of RCW 77.04.040 against fish and wildlife commissioners holding an additional elected or appointed office while serving. The statute is straightforward on this question, and at trial the judge agreed and entered an order that required Smith to clear up the violation by resigning her post with the Jefferson County Planning Commission.
“The statute is clear, and the judge’s decision was not controversial,” said Todd Adkins, vice president of government affairs at the Sportsmen’s Alliance. “Unfortunately, this appeal isn’t surprising the governor, Attorney General’s office and Ms. Smith seem determined to impose their will on Washington’s citizens, regardless of the rule of law and cost to taxpayers.”
Smith is an appointee of Gov. Inslee who came to the fish and wildlife commission with a background filled with an ideological bent favoring animal rights over wildlife conservation. True to her nature, she was among the driving forces behind cancellation of the spring black bear season and has long supported a shift away from consumptive uses to broad-based protectionism, especially for predators.
The Sportsmen’s Alliance is working diligently on our briefing materials to the Washington Supreme Court and looks forward to sportsmen having their day in court. “We are proud to help bring the rule of law back to commission activity and will fight vigorously to that end,” added Adkins. “We will be there every step of the way.”
About the Sportsmen’s Alliance: The Sportsmen’s Alliance protects and defends America’s wildlife conservation programs and the pursuits – hunting, fishing and trapping – that generate the money to pay for them. Sportsmen’s Alliance Foundation is responsible for public education, legal defense and research. Its mission is accomplished through several distinct programs coordinated to provide the most complete defense capability possible. Stay connected to Sportsmen’s Alliance: Online, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.