By Brandon Enroth
January 1st marked the deadline for a submitted from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources in addressing the insufficiency of revenue from hunting and fishing approval fees. The Wisconsin state legislation put forth this request within the last biennial budget back in 2015 under Act 55. This report has been submitted by the DNR to the Joint Finance Committee with its contents including a variety of options for legislation consideration including raising linking fees, simplifying the fee structure, and even establishing a customer loyalty program. For more than a century, hunters, anglers, and trappers have covered 90% of the cost of wild life management activities and DNR Deputy Division Administrator Eric Lobner says that they will continue to play a large role moving forward.
With residents in Wisconsin hunting at nearly three times the national rate and fish twice as much as the national rate, hunting and fishing has become widely popular and profitable throughout the state of Wisconsin every season. Lobner wants to ensure the public that there were multiple considerations included in the report besides just an increase in fees. Lobner wasn’t sure when the piece of legislation would be produced, but did say that that the process could be lengthy one given the options to consider within the report itself.