An increase in fishing and hunting fees has been proposed by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.The increases would be the first since 2010, and if the proposal gets approval in the upcoming legislative session, hunters could see as much as a ten percent increase for license fees of all kinds. Recreational fishermen would see a ten dollar fee for each annual catch record card, and razor clam diggers could see their license costs go from just over $14 to $24 per year.
The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife has been trying to prep hunters and fishing enthusiasts for this increase for months through the forwarding of information and holding of public meetings explaining why the department is proposing the increases. The reasons for the increases include the department's goals of improving fishing and hunting opportunities, as well as resource protection.
The proposal for the fee increases was sent to the Governor in December as part of the Fish and Wildlife Department's Washington Wild Future initiative, The increase is modeled to better reflect the Washington fisheries management costs, and the proposed increase in revenue is expected to generate $15.1 million a year.