Southern Governors Celebrate National Hunting and Fishing Day

Contact: Mark Lance, Southeastern States Coordinator

  • On August 29, Governors Sportsmen’s Caucus Member Governor Brian Kemp held a signing ceremony in Atlanta to recognize National Hunting and Fishing Day in Georgia.
  • On September 1, Governors Sportsmen’s Caucus Member Governor Kay Ivey held a signing ceremony in Montgomery to recognize National Hunting and Fishing Day in Alabama.
  • Established in 1972 by President Nixon, National Hunting and Fishing Day celebrates the significant economic and conservation funding contributions of hunters and anglers.

Why It Matters: Resolutions, and especially signing ceremonies, raise awareness for the public about the critical conservation funding generated by sportsmen and women through the “user pays – public benefits” American System of Conservation Funding.

In 2021, 43 Governors and President Biden issued National Hunting and Fishing Day Proclamations, and the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation is working with Governors and in-state sportsmen’s communities across the country to issue National Hunting and Fishing Day Proclamations again this year. 2022 marks the 50th anniversary of the establishment of National Hunting and Fishing Day.

Just last year, sportsmen and women generated for conservation: $702 million through the Pittman-Robertson Fund, $743 million through the Dingell-Johnson/Wallop-Breaux Fund, $902 million through hunting licenses, and $752 million through fishing licenses. This funding is the lifeblood of funding for state fish and wildlife agencies, and last year alone, provided roughly 60% of their combined funding.

As American’s original conservationists, sportsmen and women support these self-imposed federal excise taxes on firearms, ammunition, archery equipment, fishing tackle, marine electronics and motorboat fuel, in addition to state hunting and fishing license and tags. The funding generated through the American System of Conservation Funding enables state fish and wildlife agencies to increase access to public lands and waters, construct shooting ranges, and improve habitat for fish and wildlife.

Additionally, American sportsmen and women are a significant economic force. In 2021, more than $39 billion was spent on hunting, fishing, and recreational shooting, not even accounting for spending on items including trips, travel, or necessary license fees.

Hunting and fishing are also important to our country’s history and culture, and the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation encourages everyone to take advantage of the fall hunting seasons and fall fishing opportunities to celebrate our shared outdoor heritage.

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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?

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