Fish & Game Funding
The US Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) recently announced the nationwide distribution of more than $1.1 billion in revenues generated by PittmanRobertson Wildlife Restoration and DingellJohnson Sport Fish Restoration Acts. All four states in the Service’s Southwest Region have the opportunity to share in this distribution of conservation funding.
In 2016, $123,356,617 will be available to the states of Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas. The money supports essential conservation endeavors performed by state fish and game agencies and is derived by excise taxes, a user-pay userbenefit system, paid on gear for fishing, boating, shooting and hunting.
“Hunters, shooters, anglers and boaters have done more to fund essential conservation work than any other group,” said Cliff Schleusner, Chief of the Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program in the Service’s Southwest Region. “The Service delivers the money to on-theground projects that prove beneficial to fish and wildlife and access to outdoor recreation. The WSFR Program has a profound influence on conservation and the economy and our heritage of outdoor pursuits.”
The WSFR Program has facilitated impressive conservation partnerships since 1937. Over these intervening 79 years, more than $18 billion has been generated for the betterment of wildlife, fisheries and boating access. Fishing and hunting license revenues paid to state fish and game agencies by hunters and anglers are used in part to match the conserva- tion funding coming from WSFR, approximately $5 billion to date.
This conservation funding goes to where it is needed—on the ground or in the water— for projects that directly benefit fish and wildlife or improve access to outdoor endeavors.
The four states are eligible to use the following amount of funds in 2016: Arizona $25,896,359; New Mexico $20,830,305; Oklahoma $23,945,446; Texas $52,684,507.
Some recently completed projects exemplify the use of WSFR funding include the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish trapped 47 wild turkeys near Cimarron that were released in the Guadalupe Mountains inside the Lincoln National Forest, following prescribed burns and forest thinning designed to improve wildlife habitat.
To learn more about the WSFR Program in the Southwest Region, visit: www.fws.gov/southwest/ federal_assistance
The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals, and commitment to public service. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit www.fws.gov/ southwest