FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 5, 2013
Gara Files Lifetime Fishing and Hunting License Bill
Promotes Outdoor Recreation At Lower Cost to Alaskans
JUNEAU – Today, Representative Les Gara (D-Anchorage) filed legislation to promote Alaska hunting and fishing by allowing lifetime licenses for Alaskans.
“Whether it’s fishing or hunting, access and use of our outdoors are what bind us as Alaskans,” said Rep. Gara, an avid fisherman and freelance writer on Alaska fishing for magazines including Alaska Magazine and Fish Alaska Magazine. “We anticipate that some who buy these licenses will lose them by moving from Alaska, so cost savings can be passed along to those who stay.”
The bill (HB 157) would save Alaskans the time of re-applying every year for a license, and save the state and retailers the expense of annual paperwork.
“The time has come for multi-year trapping and sport fishing licenses,” said Mark Huber, past president of the Alaska Fly Fishers Association. “Multi-year licensing should provide administrative efficiencies to the Department of Fish and Game and allow hunters, trappers and sport fishers the convenience of multiple year licenses.”
The bill is written so it will not have a budget impact on programs the Department of Fish and Game funds with license proceeds. A holder is only entitled to use their resident license as long as they remain an Alaskan resident. Since holders who leave Alaska pay full price, it is anticipated that the Department will be able to come up with an affordable price for those who stay in Alaska.
In addition to Gara, co-sponsors include Representative Scott Kawasaki (D-Fairbanks) and Representative Geran Tarr (D-Anchorage).