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SALT LAKE CITY — The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service recently announced that $1.1 billion in generated revenue from hunting and fishing will be distributed back to the state wildlife agencies throughout the nation.
Excise taxes from the sale of sporting firearms, ammunition, archery equipment, fishing equipment, electric boat motors and from taxes on the purchase of motorboat fuel generated the revenue, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said in a news release.
In 2014, the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources alone generated more than $77 million in revenue with the majority coming from license and permit sales, according to a DWR report.
The $1.1 billion in national funding will be distributed to state and territorial fish and wildlife agencies to help support conservation and recreation projects.
“These funds are the cornerstone of state-based efforts that are critical to the preservation of America’s wildlife and natural resources,” U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe said in the news release. “But, they are also the fuel for a massive financial engine that benefits outdoor recreationists, hunters, boaters and anglers, equipment manufacturers and retailers, and local and regional economies.
“Their value cannot be overstated in providing opportunities for the next generation of Americans to get outdoors, experience our wild places and learn the importance of conserving our natural heritage.”
Since their inception, these programs have generated more than $15 billion “to conserve fish and wildlife resources and support outdoor recreation opportunities in America,” the news release said. The recipient state fish and wildlife agencies have also matched the funds with more than $5 billion over the years, mostly through hunting and fishing license revenues.
Texas received the highest apportionment distribution with $54 million going to its state wildlife agencies. Utah fish and wildlife agencies received $22 million for its continued conservation and recreation projects.