Safari Club International (SCI) applauds the introduction of the “Modernizing the Pittman-Robertson Fund for Tomorrow’s Needs Act” (S. 2092) in the United States Senate. The effort, led by Senators Jim Risch (R-ID), Deb Fischer (R-NE), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), John Boozman (R-AR) and Joe Manchin (D-WV). The legislation will allow state fish and wildlife agencies greater flexibility to use portions of their federal excise dollars for hunter and recreational shooter recruitment, retention and reactivation (R3) efforts.
Historically, sportsmen and women provide the vast majority of conservation funding through an excise tax on firearms, ammunition and other sporting goods through the Pittman-Robertson Fund and hunting licenses sales. Since 1937, more than $12 billion have been collected through this program and distributed to all 50 states and territories for conservation efforts.
To stem the decline of hunting license sales seen over the past thirty years, state fish and wildlife agencies sought to adapt and design programs to recruit and retain the next generation of hunters and recreational target shooters while encouraging those sportsmen and women who have allowed their licenses to lapse, to renew their affinity for the outdoors. This legislation will enable state fish and wildlife agencies to use their Pittman-Robertson funds for R3 efforts and ensure hunting and conservation remain strong for generations to come.
“On behalf of Safari Club International, I want to thank Senators Risch, Fischer, Heinrich, Boozman and Manchin for their leadership in introducing this important legislation,” said W. Laird Hamberlin, Safari Club International CEO. “Without raising taxes or mandating any spending, this bill will allow state fish and wildlife agencies the same flexibility in spending on the hunting side as they have on the fishing and boating side.”
Earlier this year Congressman Austin Scott (GA- 8) introduced a companion bill (H.R. 877) in the US House of Representatives.