By John Culclasure, Central Appalachian States Manager
On June 20, legislation that would institute a number of changes to Ohio’s hunting, fishing, and trapping licenses passed the House 93-0 and is now eligible for the Governor’s signature. Senate Bill 257, sponsored by Ohio Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus Chairs Senator Joe Uecker and Senator Sean O’Brien, previously passed the Senate 33-0 after an amendment that modified the discount rates for multi-year licenses was adopted.
Senator Joe Uecker said, “On behalf of the Ohio Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus, I would like to thank the Ohio’s sportsmen’s community for their input and support of this legislation that will improve license options for our state’s hunters, anglers, and trappers. The conservation funding dollars generated through this bill will help ensure that the Ohio Department of Natural Resources will be able to continue to offer important services to license buyers and manage Ohio’s fish and wildlife resources for future generations.”
SB 257 will create new license options for sportsmen and women in Ohio, with benefits that include giving anglers more license options, facilitating hunter recruitment, retention, and reactivation, and increasing access for mobility impaired hunters. This bill will also strengthen the financial stability of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. Specific bill provisions include:
Ohio Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus Co-Chair Representatives Jack Cera and Jonathan Dever sponsored a similar bill in the House this session.
Studies conducted at both the state and federal level have found that the number of hunters and trappers have been on a generally declining trend over the past several decades. To increase recruitment, retention, and reactivation (R3) of hunters and trappers, which initiative do you think would have the greatest impact?