Contact: Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902
Division of Fish & Wildlife schedules public workshops on
wildlife program services, hunting and trapping license fees
Conservation Access Pass for state wildlife areas also under consideration
DOVER (Dec. 17, 2015) – DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife will hold a series of public workshops to share information and gather public comments regarding wildlife conservation and wildlife area user services and related hunting and trapping license fees. To help provide these important and publically-valued services, the Division of Fish & Wildlife is considering proposing fee increases for hunting and trapping licenses, along with the establishment of a wildlife area Conservation Access Pass, which would be required for anyone using state wildlife areas for wildlife-associated recreation.
One workshop is scheduled in each county as listed below:
- Sussex County – 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 12 at Delaware Technical Community College, Jack F. Owens Campus, William A. Carter Partnership Center Lecture Hall, 21179 College Drive, Georgetown, DE 19947
- Kent County – 7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 13 at Kent County Administrative Complex, 555 South Bay Road, Dover, DE 19901
- New Castle County – 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 14 at Ommelanden Hunter Education Training Center, 1205 River Road, New Castle, DE 19720
The Advisory Council on Wildlife and Freshwater Fish will consider the potential increases at its meeting Tuesday, Jan. 26 at 7 p.m. at DNREC’s Richardson & Robbins Building Auditorium, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901. Any proposed fee increases by the Division of Fish & Wildlife require approval of the Delaware General Assembly before becoming effective.
“Hunting and trapping license fee revenues have decreased in the past decade while our wildlife program operating costs have increased, resulting in having to reduce various program operations and services to operate within our budget,” said Division of Fish & Wildlife Director David Saveikis. “The potential fee increases would allow us to avoid further service reductions and to restore and enhance our services while providing added value to the public.”
Increased fee revenues would help ensure comprehensive wildlife program operations and services, which are important for statewide management of wildlife species and for managing wildlife habitat and “providing hunter and other wildlife-associated public access on state wildlife areas,” Director Saveikis said. Value-added options being considered include extended statewide hunting seasons for certain species and increased hunting, trapping and wildlife-viewing access and enhanced habitat management on public wildlife areas.
The last hunting license fee increase occurred in 2007, when some but not all hunting license fees were increased. Each dollar of state hunting license revenue brings in an additional $3 of federal funds to the state to support a variety of wildlife management and hunter access services.
Background information on wildlife program services and the potential fee increases to fund wildlife conservation and wildlife area management, public access and hunting opportunities will be made available on the DNREC website before the workshops. For additional information on the workshops, please contact the Wildlife Section at 302-739-9912.
Vol. 45, No. 430