Contact: Kent Keene, Lower Midwestern States Coordinator
On Tuesday, November 5, Texas voters took to the ballot box and approved the constitutional amendment known as Proposition 5, which fully dedicates the sales tax revenue for certain sporting goods items to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s Parks Division (TPWD) and the Texas Historical Commission (THC). The full dedication of these funds will significantly improve the Park Division’s ability to complete long-term planning and address the changing and growing needs of Texas’ state parks and historic sites, as well as improve hunting and fishing opportunities for Texas’ sportsmen and women.
Currently, sporting goods sales tax revenue must be allocated to TWPD by the legislature, a process that also grants the legislature power to allocate this revenue for other uses. In fact, the amount allocated to TPWD has often been well below the maximum threshold of available funds generated by the sporting goods sales tax. Recognizing that the allocation of these funds was inconsistent with the original intent of the sporting goods sales tax, Texas’ 86th Legislature unanimously passed SB 26, thereby introducing Proposition 5. Passing with 88% support among Texas voters, Proposition 5 will fully take effect on September 1, 2021 and ensure that revenue from the sporting goods sales tax is automatically allocated to TPWD and THC without need for the appropriations process.
Generating an estimated $168.5 million in Fiscal Year 2019, the full allocation of Texas’ sporting goods sales tax will provide significant funding to support Texas’ state parks and historic sites. Through improved access and opportunities for hunters and anglers on Texas’ state parks, this sales tax on outdoor gear represents a viable example that has been explored in other states as a supplement to the American System of Conservation Funding, the “user pays – public benefits” structure that largely funds state wildlife and fisheries management. However, it is important that safeguards exist to prevent these funds from being diverted to other accounts.
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Your opinion counts
Sportsmen and women have been on the receiving end of increased attention from the non-hunting public, criticizing the traditional “grip and grin” photos on various social media platforms. As a sportsman or sportswoman, what strategies have you utilized to address this negative feedback?Vote Here
- I don’t post “grip and grin” photos for that reason (40.00%)
- My social media is private to avoid unwanted comments (20.00%)
- I engage the individual in the comment section or in direct messages (0.00%)
- I post more “grip and grin” photos to prove a point (0.00%)
- When posting hunting or fishing photos I tell a narrative that focuses on aspects of hunting that the general public widely supports, such as the procurement of meat for family and friends (10.00%)
- I don’t engage those individuals (30.00%)