The price of Minnesota hunting and fishing licenses will increase in March 2013 for the first time in 12 years, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) said.
On Thursday, May 3, Gov. Mark Dayton signed a House- and Senate-approved bill that, among other things, raises the cost of an annual resident fishing license from $17 to $22 and a resident deer hunting license from $26 to $30. Most resident youth hunting and fishing licenses will be $5 or free. Youth under 16 do not need a fishing or small game hunting license.
License fee increases were widely supported by hunting, fishing and conservation organizations. The last general license fee increase was approved in 2000 and implemented in 2001.
“This action was critical to maintaining the world class fishing and hunting that Minnesota enjoys,” said DNR Commissioner Tom Landwehr. “I appreciate all the efforts of the organized groups and the individual hunters, anglers, trappers and others who supported new license prices. I also thank the Legislature for its bipartisan leadership and support on this important conservation initiative.”
Enacting the license fee bill maintains the solvency of the state’s Game and Fish Fund for the remainder of this biennium, which ends June 30, 2013. New revenue will begin to come into the game and fish fund in March 2013. The DNR estimates the fees will generate about $5 million in fiscal 2013 and approximately $10 million per year in following years.
“The fishing and hunting community has spoken that they are willing to pay for good conservation,” said Landwehr. “We will put these dollars to their highest and best use for game and fish management and enforcement. That means providing the results that hunters, anglers and the conservation community are asking for.”
Landwehr said specific uses of new license fee revenues will be proposed in the months ahead as the agency develops a biennial budget proposal that the governor will submit to the Legislature in January 2013.