The Association Applauds Advancement of Reauthorization for Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Safety Trust Fund

June 17, 2021

The Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies enthusiastically praises the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation for advancing the Sport Fish Restoration and Recreational Boating Safety Act of 2021 (S. 1995). Yesterday, the Committee favorably reported the bipartisan legislation to reauthorize the Sport Fish and Boating Safety Trust Fund before its expiration at the end of the fiscal year.

“We thank Committee Chair Cantwell (D-WA) and Ranking Member Wicker (R-MS) for championing this legislation, and the members of the Committee for advancing it to the full House without amendment, ” said Sara Parker Pauley, Director of the Missouri Department of Conservation and President of the Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies. “Reauthorization of the Trust Fund will enable state agencies to continue fulfilling their role as stewards of our fish and wildlife, restoring and managing aquatic species and habitats while fueling the vital work of expanding recreational opportunities and access to the outdoors for all Americans.”

“The Trust Fund is a cornerstone of our nation’s conservation system, and this legislation is fundamental to securing our natural resources for future generations,” said Ron Regan, Executive Director of the Association. “We thank the Committee for recognizing its critical importance and urge Congress to pass this bipartisan legislation without delay.”

With current authorization set to expire at the end of the fiscal year, the Sport Fish Restoration and Recreational Boating Safety Act of 2021 would reauthorize the Trust Fund until 2026 and continue the direction of fuel taxes generated by recreational motorboats and small engines to state natural resource managers and boating law administrators for on-the-ground, locally-driven projects that conserve and restore fisheries, increase recreational boating access, and provide education to the public on boating safety and aquatic resources. The Association also thanks Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-MI) and Rep. Garret Graves (R-LA) for sponsoring its companion legislation, the Sport Fish Restoration, Recreational Boating Safety, and Wildlife Restoration Act of 2021 (H.R. 3702), which awaits a hearing in the House Committee on Natural Resources.