Public Meeting in Pheonix for license fee increase
The Arizona Game and Fish Department has been conducting a series of public meetings on a proposed increase to the statutory ceiling for license and tag fees.
This proposal only sets the ceiling for fees. Any increase in fees would have to go through the rule-making process, including another public comment period. Sales of hunting and fishing licenses fell 16 percent from 1988 through 2003.
Without an increase in statutory fee ceilings, the department will be forced to make service and program reductions.
The last statutory fee increase in 1998 only provided for the maintenance of existing department programs. The current proposal, in addition to meeting budget shortfalls, would allow the department to increase wildlife surveys, enhance law enforcement presence in the field and improve fish hatchery and fish stocking programs, in addition to improving other important services.
The meetings give the public the opportunity to discuss and provide comment on the proposal.
The final local meeting will be 6:30 p.m. Thursday at the La Quinta Inn, 2510 W. Greenway Road, Phoenix.