By Joe Mullin, New England States Coordinator
On March 26, Governors Sportsmen’s Caucus (GSC) Member Governor Janet Mills (ME) signed An Act to Enhance Fish and Wildlife Laws (LD 1298) into law through emergency rulemaking authority.
This legislation was introduced by Maine Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus member Representative Roland Martin and was co-sponsored by Caucus Co-Chair Senator Troy Jackson and Caucus member Representative John Martin.
LD 1298 authorizes Maine’s Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Commissioner Judy Camuso discretion in extending Maine’s ice-fishing season. This bill allows the Commissioner to “change the established closing date of a recreational ice-fishing season” when weather conditions warrant such an alteration. An extended ice-fishing season would result in more dollars being spent on fishing gear and equipment, further contributing towards Maine’s economy and the American System of Conservation Funding.
Maine’s ice-fishing season was scheduled to close on March 31, but with the passage of LD 1298, and with areas of the state still experiencing prime ice-fishing conditions the season may now be extended.
The Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation applauds the work of the Maine Legislative Sportsmen’s Caucus and GSC Member Governor Mills for their work to expand access and opportunity for Maine’s sportsmen and women.
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- Increase the number of states with discounted license tailored to specific groups. (5.90%)
- Increase access to public lands. (24.89%)
- Provide more information for new participants. (3.97%)
- Provide hands on opportunities to improve skills and knowledge. (13.10%)
- Engage youth through hunter and conservation programs in schools. (43.08%)
- I feel we have enough sportsmen and women and do not believe R3 programs are necessary. (9.06%)