Illinois Department of Conservation Police Law Enforcement
The American system of local governance for the purpose of maintaining parks and other recreational areas is political as well as democratic, and is based on certain citizens' awareness and desire to create better living conditions as far as environment is concerned, for the benefit of future generations. This entails preservation and conservation of natural parks and wildlife to a large extent. This is especially true in the case of the citizens of Illinois, who are always on the campaign for more open spaces, more parks, and more as well as better recreational facilities for its citizens. Officials are elected for the purpose of looking after and governing the problems that arise from these forests and natural forest preserves, and these officials do believe and also demonstrate the same determination and strongly idealistic beliefs of their predecessors, of the days gone by. The Illinois Association of Conservation and Park Districts has completed 75 years from the beginning of its inception, in the year 2003. It was in the year 1927 that the 'progressive founders' made up of a group of socially responsible citizens of Illinois took up the cause of conservation and met at the hall of the State capitol of Springfield. (IAPD at 75 Years)
However, it was not until the year 1928 that any formal steps would be taken in order to formalize the association and this was done by bringing in the Secretary of the Illinois Municipal League, AD Mclarty, who set about organizing a separate association for park districts, and also a statewide organization of all park district officials. The result was the creation of a 'Parks Organization Section' at the Illinois Municipal League; with a complete set of separate officials and committee members, with Mclarty as the First Secretary, where the issues of conservation could be discussed in a formal manner. The very first meeting of the newly formed statewide organization was held in Joliet and more than 38 representatives from more than 16 districts were able to attend this historic session, where issues concerning conservation and the need for protection of the existing parks and wildlife could be discussed openly and without bias.
Legislation concerning these issues were also discussed and familiarized with by the members and this became an important factor in future years when the legislation concerning conservation would come into focus. The factors of education of the officials on pertinent issues, discussions on the same topics, and the establishment of a strong network that would address all the issues without bias while keeping in mind the various legislations that were associated with conservation were all taken into consideration during this meeting, and the result was the establishment of the general standard and mainstay of these meetings of the IAPD in the years to come. It was in the year 1930 that the name 'The Illinois association of Park Districts' was registered under the Constitution, and its purpose was stated to be that of serving as a mutually co-operative agency for the purpose of the discussion of the various problems as well as administrative and legislative issues concerning the policies and the administration of the park districts. (IAPD at 75 Years)
After its first regional meeting that was held in the year 11937, a decision was taken to the effect that there must be a system of networking and co-operation among neighboring agencies, and also that non- members must be involved in the running of the Organization. It was not until the year 1951 that the historic 'Park Law Codification Bill' was approved of and signed, with the purpose of combining all the various laws pertaining to the issues of park conservatism into one single section of the state law, and in the year 1953, the association that had begun in a very small way in the year 1927 now became a full time organization, and a full time executive director, Marjorie M. Dickinson was appointed to supervise the day-to-day running activities of the organization. When the issue of 'tort liability' gained precedence over others, the then Governor Otto Kerner appointed Robert A Stuart as the organization's legal consultant to not only serve as a member of the Tort's Law Commission, but also to codify the various statutes of immunity against liability related to the functioning of the park districts.
During the years of 1980 to 1988, the IAPD passed more legislation than had been passed in its entire history from its inception in 1927, and in 1986 a Conference on the Economic Significance of Recreation was held in Illinois, and this was one of the first of such meetings to be held on a national scale at that time. In 1991 the IAPD was able to publish the 'Economic benefits of Illinois Park District Leisure Services', which was a program that had been prepared by a tem of professors of the Western Illinois University, and which resulted in the creation of the 'Illinois Parks Association Risk Services' program. In the year 1994, a special day is set apart every month for the celebration of a 'Park District Conservation Day' in order to promote the good work being carried out by the various park districts and other natural resource conservation and promotional agencies, and also the IPRA, an event that broadcasted the recreational and entertainment in the park districts, as well as displayed the wildlife and other features of the environment in a pleasing manner to the public. (IAPD at 75 Years)
In the year 1995, a Public Act 89 to 49 was signed for the purpose of the creation of the Conservation 2000 Fund that was meant to be used for the protection and conservation of the natural resources of the state of Illinois through the establishment of a partnership between the state government and the various public and private land owners of Illinois. By the year 2002, the youth as well the children of the state of Illinois had come to be involved in the different programs being organized by the IAPD, and there was a widespread response and a positive reaction to the issue of conservation, and a lot of good feelings generated towards the cause of the Illinois Department of Conservation. (IAPD at 75 Years)
It was the year 1885 when the first 'Game Wardens' were appointed by the Governor of the state of Illinois in order to maintain the law and order situation in game parks by traveling the entire length and breadth of the state by train, and thereby keeping up the law of conservation. When the department of Fishery gained in importance, wardens were hired to maintain the law in this department, and these people came to be known as 'Fish Wardens'. It was not until the year 1925 that the Department of Conservation was created, and the Departments of Fish and game joined this Department and their duties became inter-changeable, meaning that they could either protect the Fish Department or even protect Game, and these officers were known as 'Constables' initially, which later changed to the title 'Inspector'. In the year 1959 when the 'Boat Registration and Safety Act' was passed, the Inspector, or Game Warden as he was generally referred to had to take on the additional responsibility of enforcing the new 'boating' laws that had been passed to regulate the standard of boating, as well as to oversee the registrations of the new boats that were to be used. (Illinois conservation Police, Early History)
Each officer had a boat of his own that would aid him in carrying out his duties. During the mid to late 1960's, the officer once again had to cope with another increase in his duties, which were the duties of enforcing all of the Illinois State's laws regarding traffic regulations and criminal as well as drug laws, and so on within their Departments leased or partially owned or fully owned properties. In the year 1974 the title of Inspector was changed to the better suited 'Conservation Police Officer' or 'CPO'. It was in the year 1995 that the Department of Conservation joined forces with several smaller organizations of a similar kind, in order to form what is now known as the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, also known as the DNR. The title of 'Game Warden' has however seemed to endure through the ages, and everywhere, this title is still used over the later one of Conservation Police Officer. Some of the duties carried out by the CPO include the overseeing and the enforcement of the various criminal and vehicle and drug laws that are violated in the Sate Parks in Illinois, the patrolling of the waters of the lakes of Illinois in order to check the safety of the equipment being used for boating, as well as the proper registration of the boats traversing the waters. (Illinois conservation Police, Early History)
The CPO is also expected to check the licenses of hunters or fishers, both commercial and non-commercial, and…