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State gets nearly $15M for fish and wildlife projects

Post by Jeff Mayor / The News Tribune on Feb. 23, 2009 at 11:19 am with No Comments »
February 23, 2009 11:19 am

Washington will receive almost $15 million this year for wildlife and sport fish restoration programs.

The funds are part of the more than $740.9 million that will be distributed nationwide by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to fund fish and wildlife conservation, boater access to public waters, and hunter and aquatic education. Nationally, nearly $336 million will go to wildlife restoration and the fish restoration apportionment will be more than $404 million.

The announcement was made earlier today by the Department of the Interior.

The state Department of Fish and Wildlife will receive more than $8.3 million for fish restoration projects and almost $6.6 million for wildlife projects.

The money comes from excise taxes and import duties paid by outdoor recreationists on sporting firearms, ammunition, archery equipment, sportfishing equipment, electric outboard motors, and fuel taxes attributable to motorboats and small engines, said an Interior department news release.

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, the release said. Since the program began, funding has helped wildlife agencies certify more than 9 million participants in hunter education, according to the service.

The Dingell-Johnson Sport Fish Restoration Act uses a similar formula to distribute funds raised through excise taxes and import duties on sport fishing equipment, motorboat and small engine fuels and pleasure boats. Program funds over the years have helped with the stocking of more than 6.8 billion fish and the renovation or improvement of 6,400-boat access sites.

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