Buy Big Game Tags in July

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The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife today urged Oregonians planning to use sport hunting tags, commercial licenses and other permits in August to buy them in July before the agency moves its computer system to a new location.

"The message is ‘buy in July,’ said Doug Juergensen, ODFW’s Information Systems Administrator. "We aren’t expecting problems, but we are encouraging people not to wait in case there is any difficulty bringing the system back on line after the move."

ODFW plans to shut down the statewide computer network that supports the sale of all licenses, tags and permits from 9 p.m., Sunday Aug. 3, through midnight, Wednesday, Aug. 6. During that time, hunters and anglers and others will not be able to purchase recreational fishing and hunting licenses, angling harvest tags, big game tags, game bird validations, commercial fishing licenses, fish dealer licenses, furtaker licenses, permanent hunting and fishing licenses and permits, taxidermy permits, fish propagation permits, wildlife holding permits, fur dealer permits, and other licenses and permits usually available through ODFW offices or 600 Point-of-Sale agents located throughout the state.

During this time, anglers will not be required to have a license or harvest tag. All other regulations related to fishing seasons and angling gear restrictions remain in effect during the three days.

Big game hunters and all other non-sport fishing license and permit holders must have the appropriate license, tag or permit with them when hunting or conducting business. The dates of the computer move were chosen because they would impose the least impact to big game hunters. No controlled hunt deadline occurs during the three days. However, pronghorn, bighorn sheep and antlerless elk hunters with hunts starting Aug. 9 or Aug. 16 are urged to buy their tags before the computers are shut down. Hunters arriving from out of town who need to purchase a tag during the shut down must go to an ODFW district office to obtain a hand-written tag.

ODFW is moving its headquarters from downtown Portland to north Salem in mid-August. To prepare, the computer servers and mainframe computer will be shut down late Sunday, Aug. 3 and trucked to a new location in Salem. ODFW’s computer operations staff will set up the hardware and test the system Aug. 4-5. If everything goes smoothly, it is possible that license sales could resume Wednesday, Aug. 6.

"We are testing the system now to avoid any problems," said Juergensen, "But we need people to be prepared in case something unexpected does occur."

The move was mandated by the 2001 Oregon Legislature, and is being paid for out of the proceeds from the sale of ODFW’s Portland headquarters building.