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June 01, 2011

Floridians defeat legislation that threatened fishery conservation

Florida is the top fishing destination in the United States and recreational fishing has an estimated $7.5 billion annual economic impact

Anglers like you helped stop a bill in the Florida Legislature that would have eliminated Florida's resident and non-resident recreational fishing licenses—a bill that would have had a devastating effect on fisheries management, conservation and law enforcement. Due in large part to overwhelming angler response, state Senators did not act on S.B. 744 before the Florida Legislature closed the 2011 session, rendering it ineligible for further consideration. Thank you for taking action against this legislation.
 
Florida is the top fishing destination in the United States and recreational fishing has an estimated $7.5 billion annual economic impact on Florida's economy. Despite this, State Senator Joe Negron (R-Stuart) introduced a bill in February that would have eliminated resident and non-resident fishing licenses. This misguided legislation sought to dismantle the "user-pay, user-benefit" fisheries management system which is indisputably the best fisheries management program in the world.
 
Florida receives a substantial portion of its funding for fisheries management and conservation through a combination of state fishing license sales and the federal manufacturers excise tax on fishing tackle.
 
In addition, federal law would have required all anglers fishing in saltwater or for anadromous species to pay a federal fee that would have bypassed fisheries programs and gone directly into the National Treasury.

Thanks to KeepAmericaFishing angler advocates like you, this is bill is no longer a threat a fisheries management and conservation in Florida.  Due to overwhelming response, the Florida Senate did not act on this harmful bill and it was withdrawn from consideration when the legislative session concluded on May 6. This is a huge victory for the angling community and it is thanks to angler activists like you!