By now you’ve probably heard or read (as posted in this column) that Bass Pro Shops purchased Cabela’s for $4 billion. As in most of these buy-out situations, a number of employees customarily lose their jobs. And that’s what’s happening at Cabela’s headquarters in Sidney, Nebraska. As such, remaining employees at Cabela’s former headquarters will have until March 1 to accept their severance packages, which were offered in a letter to employees last week.
As reported by Omaha World-Herald and the Outdoor Hub, Bass Pro Shops has begun the clearing out process at Cabela’s home office, and the surrounding area of Nebraska is already feeling the repercussions. “This will be a mass exodus in Sidney,” one headquarters employee was reported saying.
According to the article, about 800 employees working at the Sidney location who are over 50 years old, with a minimum of 10 years working with the company, would get 2 weeks of severance pay for each year of service, plus a $40,000 bonus, should they accept the offer. They also get a lifetime discount card to Bass Pro and Cabela’s stores.
Any employee who is under 50 years of age or fewer than 10 years with the company received a severance offer and a $20,000 bonus, plus discounts for the next 10 years.
“These voluntary programs, which will expire March 1, 2018, are above and beyond what Outfitters will receive in future severance programs,” the letter stated, referring to Cabela’s employees.
A source told us that at least one (and possibly more) managerial employee at the Cabela’s Hamburg store was let go.
This is a sad situation that will hurt the Sidney community as well. According to my fellow outdoor scribe Jim Shepard, who reported in his The Outdoor Wire news website, the homes in Sidney, which was essentially a mill town before Dick Cabela started the company, are losing their value at a rapid pace. And he goes on to explain that Dick Cabela, initially began selling imported fishing flies after a $45 investment. After that, he grew the company that at last count employed 2,000 employees in Sidney.
Shepard added that this buyout was for the Sidney location and that no word was given on Cabela’s other offices in Kearny, Lincoln and Denver.
Bass Pro Shops Owner Johnny Morris appears to be doing everything he can to provide departing workers substantial severance packages, and has reportedly established a $20 million fund to “enhance normal severance benefits,” Shepard wrote.
PA LEGISLATORS PROPOSE HUNTING CHANGES
As reported in The Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs to its members, the following hunting law proposals were filed:
SCO1247 By Brewster. Allows for limited Sunday hunting on PA State Game Lands.
* February 5, 2018 03:31 PM *
Sen. James R. Brewster *
Limited Sunday Hunting on State Game Lands
* * * In the near future, I will be introducing legislation to allow for limited Sunday hunting on PA State Game Lands. Two Sundays during the combined antler and antlerless deer seasons for hunting white-tailed deer on State Game Lands and one Sunday during the statewide black bear season for hunting black bear on State Game Lands.
* * * * The State game lands were purchased with proceeds from hunting licenses, federal tax on guns and ammunition, not with state tax money.
* * * * A 2010 PA Legislative Budget and Finance Committee report stated allowing Sunday hunting even on just two Sundays of the general deer season would have a positive economic impact and keep Pennsylvania hunters in the state for a full weekend of hunting as well as attract out-of-state hunters to our Commonwealth.
SCO1251 By Corman. Allows the use of electronic deer calls.
* February 9, 2018 03:16 PM
* Sen. Jake Corman
* Electronic Game Calls for Deer
* In the near future, I plan to introduce legislation to allow for the use of electronic deer calls in the Commonwealth. In today's world where the use of advanced technology is commonplace, now is the time to provide our sportsmen and women with the opportunity to use electronic deer calls to enhance their outdoor experience.
* Electronic deer calls do not substantially alter the already common practice of attracting deer through calls, but rather add to the sport by assisting with recruitment and retention of our younger generation of hunters. Pennsylvania currently allows electronic calls for predator hunting, and last fall the Game Commission approved the use of electronic decoys for waterfowl, as well as ozone machines to help with the elimination of scent.
* Currently, almost fifty percent of the states allow for the use of electronic deer calls, including Ohio, New York and Delaware.
* I believe that electronic deer calls will present an opportunity to get more people out into the field to experience hunting first hand and possibly gain a lifelong interest.
As always, we’ll keep you posted if these proposals get approval.
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Nick Hromiak has been an outdoors and automotive writer for over 30 years. He's been published in numerous national and state-wide outdoor magazines and newspapers.