Wednesday, February 25, 2009

$740 Million Goes to States for Fish and Wildlife Projects

$740 Million Goes to States for Fish and Wildlife Projects
Department of the Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced today more than $740.9 million will be distributed to the fish and wildlife agencies of the 50 states, commonwealths, the District of Columbia, and territories to fund fish and wildlife conservation, boater access to public waters, and hunter and aquatic education. These Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program funds come from excise taxes and import duties on sporting firearms, ammunition, archery equipment, sportfishing equipment, electric outboard motors, and fuel taxes attributable to motorboats and small engines.
"The funds raised under the Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Programs have helped conserve our fish and wildlife resources and provide opportunities for outdoor recreation for more than half a century. These investments, which help create jobs while protecting our nation's natural treasures, are particularly important in these tough economic times,” Salazar said. “All those who pay into this program – the hunting and fishing industries, boaters, hunters, anglers, and recreational shooters – should take pride in helping to conserve our land and its fish and wildlife and provide benefits to all Americans who cherish the natural world and outdoor recreation.”
The Wildlife Restoration apportionment for 2009 totals nearly $336 million, with more than $64.7 million marked for hunter education and firearm and archery range programs. The Sport Fish Restoration apportionment for 2009 totals more than $404 million.
Pittman-Robertson Wildlife Restoration Act funding is available to states, commonwealths, and territories through a formula based on land area, including inland waters and the number of paid hunting license holders in each state, commonwealth, and territory. State, commonwealth, and territorial fish and wildlife agencies use the money to manage wildlife populations, conduct habitat research, acquire wildlife lands and public access, carry out surveys and inventories, administer hunter education, and construct and maintain shooting ranges.


  1. Federal funding from both the PR/DJ funds and from the Farm Bill is up nationally and for Vermont. But, Vermont's ability to capture and use those funds is down and going down as available state match money declines and positions are left unfilled and positions are cut.
    To date more than $4 million in Federal aid has been left unclaimed and up to $7 million in Farm Bill money for wetland restoration is available. But with no one to administer the grants, Vermont can't even use contractors to do the work they once did for wildlife, range development and hunter education.
    All sportsmen need to let the administration of Gov Douglas and their representatives know that they care about wildlife and they know that the cuts in FWD positions now being proposed will cost VT money-not save money- and is a political shame that we are not buying.

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