MADISON, Wisc.— The Humane Society of the United States and the Center for Biological Diversity sent a letter today to Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul requesting legal action to remove Natural Resources Board Chair Frederick Prehn, who continues to hold office more than two months after his six-year term expired May 1.
“Mr. Prehn’s brazen refusal to leave office at the end of his term defies the law and tarnishes the integrity of the Natural Resources Board, which is entrusted with managing the state’s wildlife in public trust for all Wisconsin citizens, present and future,” said Nicholas Arrivo, an attorney for the Humane Society of the United States. “A state office of extraordinary significance to the public interest cannot be held hostage by the cynical whims of one man, and we urge Attorney General Kaul to take prompt action to remedy the situation.”
The letter says Prehn has no legal basis to continue serving on the seven-member board, which sets wildlife, environmental and public lands policy in Wisconsin. Its jurisdiction includes approving quotas and other regulations governing wolf hunting seasons.
Wisconsin’s February 2021 wolf hunt was the second deadliest in the state’s history. At least 218 wolves were killed in less than three days, dramatically exceeding quotas. In August the board is expected to approve quotas for the fall wolf hunt.
“Wisconsin’s brutal winter wolf hunt showed that the Natural Resources Board needs new leadership, someone who actually cares about the state’s wolves and other wildlife,” said Collette Adkins, carnivore conservation director at the Center for Biological Diversity. “Prehn should accept that his term is over and finally step down before he does any more damage. That would go a long way toward restoring the public’s faith in those who set the state’s wildlife policy.”