Thursday, March 24, 2016

Senate Committee Reports Bills To Allow Game, Fish & Boat Commissions To Set Fees

The Senate Game and Fisheries Committee Wednesday unanimously reported out bills authorizing the Game and Fish and Boat Commissions to set the fees they charge rather than having the General Assembly establish the fees by law.
The bills include Senate Bill 1166 (Stefano-R-Fayette) Game Commission (sponsor summary) and Senate Bill 1168 (Eichelberger-R-Blair) Fish & Boat Commission (sponsor summary).
Senate Bill 1168 was amended to make several technical changes before being reported out.
The bills now go to the full Senate for consideration.
Sen. Mario Scavello (R-Monroe) serves as Majority Chair of the Committee and can be contacted by sending email to:  Sen. James Brewster (D-Allegheny) serves as Minority Chair and can be contacted by sending email to:
On April 7, the House Game and Fisheries Committee holds a hearing on the issue of hunting license fees in Room 205 of the Ryan Building starting at 10:00 a.m.
PA Environmental Council Support
On Monday, the PA Environmental Council sent a letter to members of the Senate Game and Fisheries Committee supporting both Senate Bill 1166 and Senate Bill 1168.
The text of the letter follows--
On behalf of the PA Environmental Council, I would like to offer our strong support for both Senate Bill 1166 and Senate Bill 1168. This legislation allows the Game Commission and the Fish & Boat Commission, respectively, to establish their own fees.
As independent agencies not supported by General Fund revenues, it is vital that both Commissions have sufficient ability to support their important service to the people of the Commonwealth.
Not only do they help maintain one of the cornerstones of our Commonwealth’s economy – recreation and tourism – they perform vital conservation work that increases quality of life for all Pennsylvanians.
Both Commissions submit annual reports to the Senate and House Game & Fisheries Committees, and are subject to periodic audits by the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee.
Further, it is in the inherent best interests of both Commissions to maintain a fee structure that accommodates our state’s active and diverse recreational community.
We commend the sponsors of this legislation, and the members of the Committee, for supporting the important work of these two Commissions. We ask that you support this legislation.
Thank you for your consideration.
John Walliser, Senior Vice President, PA Environmental Council
For more information on programs, initiatives and special events, visit the PA Environmental Council website, visit the PEC Blog, follow PEC on Twitter or Like PEC on Facebook.  Click Here to receive regular updates from PEC.

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