- Associated Press - Sunday, September 20, 2015

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Ohio’s wildlife chief is resigning next month after four years on the job, where he was involved in fights with lawmakers over deer-hunting changes and with the inspector general over alleged on-duty hunting by wildlife officers.

Scott Zody submitted his resignation from the $108,000-a-year job last week, telling his staff in an email that the decision was of his choosing and under his terms, The Columbus Dispatch reported (http://bit.ly/1guWx8z ). The resignation is effective Oct. 2.

Zody, 49, had served as director of the wildlife division at the Ohio Department of Natural Resources since November 2011. He said in an email to staff that they accomplished a lot during his time at the helm, but he was disappointed that they haven’t achieved long-term financial stability for the division.

“The past four years serving as your Chief have been challenging to say the least, but in spite of the obstacles placed before us, we still accomplished much,” Zody wrote.

He was in two high-profile battles as wildlife chief.

In 2013, nearly 30 lawmakers protested changes in deer-hunting season, leading Zody to propose amended rules that opponents labeled as a move to insert Republican politics into wildlife management.

He and other officials also crossed horns with Inspector General Randall J. Meyer last year. Meyer’s office concluded in an investigation that 18 wildlife officers hunted deer while on duty. ODNR rejected the findings as “unverifiable” and returned 17 of 18 officers to the field from desk duty.

Zody didn’t respond to an email seeking comment.

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Information from: The Columbus Dispatch, http://www.dispatch.com

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