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Commission hopes for multiyear fishing licenses

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From todays Pittsburgh Tribune Review:


Long-term benefit

Fish and Boat Commission officials believe selling multiyear licenses could help fishing in another way: by retaining children.

Surveys in Pennsylvania and elsewhere show that most kids learn to fish from their parents and want to fish with their parents, said the commission's Carl Richardson. He also said that, if parents fish, it's more likely that their children will fish.

If dad is a fisherman, 80 percent of sons and 62 percent of daughters fish. If mom fishes, 75 percent of sons fish and 71 percent of daughters



Like a lead-headed jig dropped over the side of the boat, participation in fishing has been sinking, here in Pennsylvania and across the country.

According to Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation statistics, roughly eight million people took up fishing for the first time in 2010. But more than 10 million dropped out of the sport.

Pennsylvania is part of that "leaky bucket." License sales here are down by about 33 percent since 1990, and the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission expects to sell only about 800,000 this year, fewer than in any other since 1970.

"No matter how you look at the data, the picture isn't pretty," Carl Richardson, director of the commission's outreach and education section, told members of the Senate game and fisheries committee at a hearing in Harrisburg on Tuesday.

The commission relies on license sales for the majority of its annual revenue, so "that's got lots of ramifications for us," said Timothy Schaeffer, director of the commission's bureau of policy, planning and communications.

But the commission has a plan.

It's pushing Senate Bill 1049, which would give the agency authority to sell multiyear licenses allowing anglers to fish for three to five years. That would benefit anglers in terms of convenience, said Bernie Matscavage, director of the commission's bureau of administration. It also would save them about $14 in transaction fees, he added.

But the bill's real value is that it would bring more federal revenue to the commission, Schaeffer told members of the Pennsylvania Federation of Sportsmen's Clubs at their fall convention in Camp Hill.

The commission gets funding each year from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service based on how many licenses it sells, he said. The problem is that amount is not consistent, because fishermen drop in and out of the sport with greater frequency than anyone ever thought, he said. Only 8.5 percent of anglers bought a license from 2006 to 2010, for example.

That means more than 90 percent of anglers come and go to some degree.

"It's crazy, how high these numbers are," Schaeffer said. "What we'd like to do is smooth that out, slow down that bleed."

If the commission sold a five-year license to an angler who might otherwise drop in and out of the sport -- because of time constraints, bad weather and other factors - it would get five years of federal revenue, regardless of whether that person fished each year or only one. The importance of that can't be understated, said John Arway, executive director of the commission.

"It's very important for us to encourage license sales, because that drives money back to us to pay for fishing, boating and conservation," Arway said.

The Federation and the Pennsylvania Council of Trout Unlimited testified in support of the bill at Tuesday's hearing.

Three other states -- Kansas, Georgia and Florida -- have begun experimenting with multiyear licenses. Commission officials - who said a survey on their own web site indicates 70 percent of Keystone State fishermen say they'd be interested in a multiyear license, with a three-year license most preferred - want to try next.

Sen. Richard Kasunic, a Fayette County Democrat and Sen. Richard Alloway, the Adams County Republican who chairs the committee, want to offer that chance. They said they'll be working to convince their fellow legislators to pass their bill "as soon as possible."

"It's critical to provide opportunities for people to enjoy Pennsylvania's outdoors, youngsters, adults, people who may have fished in the past and given it up, and that's what we're trying to do here," Kasunic said



Read more: Commission hopes for multiyear fishing licenses - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review http://pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburg ... 758536.html#ixzz1Z0VVRr5D

Posted on: 2011/9/25 18:46

Edited by acristickid on 2011/9/25 19:06:47
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Re: Commission hopes for multiyear fishing licenses

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I would buy one it would save me some time

Posted on: 2011/9/25 19:04
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Re: Commission hopes for multiyear fishing licenses

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Quote:

Fredrick wrote:
I would buy one it would save me some time



Me too and I would spring for a lifetime one as well. Say 500.00 bucks

Posted on: 2011/9/25 20:07
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Re: Commission hopes for multiyear fishing licenses

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ditto what Bruno said. I'm surprised other states, like NY, don't do this even for out of staters. I'd love to just buy PA and NY, even if they were $500 and get it over with. If I die, then I guess they make out!...;) I guess they would make out anyway, b/c all I do is spend $ and never keep a fish...:)

Posted on: 2011/9/25 20:38


Re: Commission hopes for multiyear fishing licenses

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Quote:

Fredrick wrote:
I would buy one it would save me some time


There's this thing called the internet. You should check it out, lets you do all kinds of crazy things from the comfort of your own home.

Posted on: 2011/9/25 22:30


Re: Commission hopes for multiyear fishing licenses

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Quote:

JasonS wrote:
Quote:

Fredrick wrote:
I would buy one it would save me some time


There's this thing called the internet. You should check it out, lets you do all kinds of crazy things from the comfort of your own home.


Oh wait you mean this thing I'm on right now OMG how could I've not thought about this sooner what was I thinking but wait I guess I wasn't thank you for the insight Jason

Posted on: 2011/9/25 22:48
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Re: Commission hopes for multiyear fishing licenses

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yeah, I agree. I'm 28 and if I could buy a 5, 10 or 20 year license I would. hell, I'd pay extra just for them to bring back the snazzy artful trout stamps. I think they have a lot of options they should consider to increase license sales.

Posted on: 2011/9/25 22:48
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Re: Commission hopes for multiyear fishing licenses

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Had a post on the wvangler website I visit. It seemed that it was a quick money boost for a few years. When the licenses finally paid for themselves to the angler, naturally the money was used up by the outdoor commissions down there, and cuts were made.
The folks on that website herald our commission on a pretty consistant basis if that tells you anything.
If its implemented I'll probably buy one, but I actually vote no.

Posted on: 2011/9/26 7:44
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Re: Commission hopes for multiyear fishing licenses
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Quote:

Squaretail wrote:
Had a post on the wvangler website I visit. It seemed that it was a quick money boost for a few years. When the licenses finally paid for themselves to the angler, naturally the money was used up by the outdoor commissions down there, and cuts were made.
The folks on that website herald our commission on a pretty consistant basis if that tells you anything.
If its implemented I'll probably buy one, but I actually vote no.


I have the same concerns as Squaretail. There would be a windfall of revenue during the 1st year, and a significant drop-off the following years. Will the Commish have the discipline to control their spending based on a projection of less revenue in future years? Don't know.

Secondly, the anglers most likely to buy a multi-year license are the ones that have in the past and will likely in the future purchase a license every year anyway. The casual angler is a casual angler and would not likely to tie up $100 +/- for a 3 year license he may or may not use.

BTW, while fishing license sales ARE down, but I believe the most significant factor in fewer license sales is the selling lifetime license for seniors. Many/most seniors take advantage of this and are not counted in the total when making comparisons to past years. Sorta like the counting of the unemployed when the unemployment rate is calculated; after benefits are exhausted, the gov. loses track of unemployed workers. Same for lifetime licensed anglers.

I would buy a multi-year license, as long as I have a way to print extras if I happen to lose it....lol. But I have my doubts the program will have a any significant positive net effect on revenue for the FBC in the long term.

Posted on: 2011/9/26 8:38

Edited by afishinado on 2011/9/26 9:03:55


Re: Commission hopes for multiyear fishing licenses
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From what I can gather from the article, it seems the major rationale for this plan is the desire to sustain or increase federal matching funds from the USWS that are calculated based on annual license sales. If this is the case, I'm assuming that when the UFWS allocates these funds, it will amortize the "extended licenses" sales over the next three years and adjust their allocations accordingly(?) If, on the other hand, the three year license you buy is calculated as an increase of three licenses that very first year.....the PFBC will find itself in an ever rockier and less stable funding situation long term. I'm assuming the former scenario will be adopted rather than the latter.

While I sympathize with the dilemma faced by the PFBC due to declining license sales.....I'm inclined to see this proposal as more of a short term accounting gimmick that might stabilize federal matching funds in the short term but won't have much affect on the long term funding problem.

Posted on: 2011/9/26 8:53


Re: Commission hopes for multiyear fishing licenses

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I don't know about some , but i would be more than willing to pay for a lifetime and id be willing to do it for more than 500 bucks.
for me fishing especially flyfishing has been the greatest gift Pennsylvania ever bestowed upon me and i am more than grateful for the privledge of being allowed to fish a hell of alot of water for the price of said license.
If you go to England it is far more expensive to fish and you also have to kill your fish and there isn't the same opportunities that we have here in the Keystone State,also Germany and Austria will empty your pockets quick just to fish.for the price of your license you can catch all the fish you want fish just about anywhere as long as it is not posted so much water here in this state you couldn't fish it all in a multitude of lifetimes.
Also in the winter we have many spring creeks that are fishable...talk to a guy in Maine or the New England states, or better yet go west young man an see how much water is open, Let alone talk to guys from NY they will tell you how lucky you are.
I am totally against the Marcellus Sham, say what you will but its just like the other Natural resource grabs that have happened in this state first it was the timber, then coal ,iron ore,slate,now they are going to suck the state dry and not even give a royalty to the state.
I am however willing to spend even more for my license if the state will get off its dead butt stop making excuses, and start helping us as anglers, aquire all the water rights we can, declare as many streams after a good study,wild trout water protect them and make the violators pay extreme or even obscene fines for ruining our resources and enviroment. also if they catch guys who cant fish like the rules say ,do like they do in NY confiscate all equipment ,impound the vehicles till the fine is paid, if fine cannot be paid arrest and imprison till the fine is paid,also take away driving privledges for say the6 months after the first incident,two years the second, five years the third, and if you get caught the 4th time lose em for good.
Also thier name should go into that multi state violators database so they can't fish or hunt in the states that participate.
Start a program to tech folks how they can improve the riparian zones through what plants to plant what devices to use an where they are best suited,also make permitting easier,tear down all onld dams that are just silt collectors get on the ball.
Id be more than willing to step up an pay more if they would let me buy a lifetime license, i get alot out of flyfishing and i love the State of Pennsylvania's great outdoors, as much as i love Maine,and I have a bit of property in Montana as well but Pennsylvania is home and i want to keep the Woods as wild as they can be considering our location and the population were dealing with.
Tight Wraps & Tight Lines
Rick Wallace

Posted on: 2011/9/26 11:58


Re: Commission hopes for multiyear fishing licenses

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Type Dingle Johnson Act into your favorite search engine and you will find many brief explanations that will certainly then make you aware of a major source of fisheries agency funding if you were not aware already. As an example of how this applies in Pa., when fisheries managers and their staffs, usually comprised of a single biologist and a summer seasonal worker, conduct lake, stream (documenting wild trout streams for example), and river fish population surveys, 75% of the $ spent in personnel time are Dingle Johnson monies; 25% are fishing license $. It takes license sales, state land mass, and state water acreage data entered into a formula to capture those fed dollars.

Posted on: 2011/9/28 10:36


Re: Commission hopes for multiyear fishing licenses

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Not that I'm immature or anything, but Dingle Johnson makes me laugh. That kid got made fun of in school.

Posted on: 2011/9/28 12:52
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Re: Commission hopes for multiyear fishing licenses

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Ryan, lol. The best is the Woodcock-Johnson test.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Woodcock ... ts_of_Cognitive_Abilities

Alright, I apologize for continuing the diversion...

Posted on: 2011/9/28 12:58


Re: Commission hopes for multiyear fishing licenses

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Pcray,
I bet Richard Noggin didn't like his name any better..lol

Posted on: 2011/9/28 13:13



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