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Salazar Announces Almost $34 Million to Alaska for Fish and Wildlife Projects

The hunting and fishing industries, as well as recreational shooters,
hunters, boaters, and anglers, continue to fund conservation across the
nation.

Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced on February 16th the
distribution of more than $749 million in excise tax revenues generated by
sportsmen and women to state and territorial fish and wildlife agencies
through the Dingell-Johnson Sport Fish Restoration and Pittman-Robertson
Wildlife Restoration Programs.

Here in Alaska, this distribution will total almost $34 million dollars,
including $15,264,514 in Wildife Restoration funding and $18,234,739
through the Sport Fish Restoration Program.

“Hunters and anglers have been rightly called America’s first
conservationists,” said U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Alaska Regional
Director Geoffrey L. Haskett. “And it is these men and women who provide
dedicated, critical funding for state fish and wildlife agencies through
the Dingell-Johnson and Pittman-Robertson Programs. Nationwide, these funds
support important fish and wildlife management and conservation,
recreational boating access, and hunter and aquatic education programs. At
a time when many state budgets are facing significant shortfalls, the money
distributed through these two federal programs is more important than
ever.”

Program funds come from excise taxes paid by manufacturers, producers, and
importers on sporting firearms, ammunition, archery equipment, fishing
equipment and tackle, and electric outboard motors. Recreational boaters
also contribute to the program through fuel taxes on motorboats and small
engines.

The Pittman-Robertson Wildlife Restoration Program apportionment for 2011
totals more than $384 million, of which more than $79 million is for hunter
education and safety programs. The Dingell-Johnson Sport Fish Restoration
Program apportionment for 2011 totals nearly $365 million, of which nearly
$55 million is for recreational boating access facilities. The U.S. Fish
and Wildlife Service’s Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program
reimburses up to 75 percent of the cost of each eligible project while
State fish and wildlife agencies contribute a minimum of 25 percent,
generally using hunting and fishing license revenues as the required
non-Federal match.

Please visit the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Wildlife and Sport Fish
Restoration Program web site at http://wsfrprograms.fws.gov/ for more
information on the goals and accomplishments of these programs and for
individual State, Commonwealth, and territorial funding allocations.

Pittman-Robertson Wildlife Restoration Program funding is available to all
50 states, the Commonwealths of Puerto Rico and the Northern Mariana
Islands, and the territories of American Samoa, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin
Islands. One-half of the 11 percent excise tax on bows, arrows, and archery
equipment and 10 percent excise tax on handguns, pistols, and revolvers
make up the funding for hunter education programs. The other one-half of
the excise tax are for wildlife restoration purposes, including the 11
percent excise tax on firearms and ammunition.

Each state or territory receives a Wildlife Restoration Program
apportionment derived from a formula that incorporates its total land area
and number of paid hunting license holders. Each state or territory may not
receive more than 5 percent or less than one-half of 1 percent of the total
apportionment. Fish and wildlife agencies use these funds to manage
wildlife populations, conduct habitat research, acquire wildlife habitat,
enhance wildlife habitat, and public hunting access, carry out surveys and
inventories, administer hunter education programs, and construct and
maintain shooting and archery ranges.

The Dingell-Johnson Sport Fish Restoration Program funding is available to
all 50 states, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealths of Puerto Rico
and the Northern Mariana Islands, and the territories of American Samoa,
Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. States receive funds through a formula
based on the land and water area of the state or territory and its total
number of paid fishing license holders. Sport Fish Restoration funds come
from excise taxes and import duties on sport fishing equipment, motorboat
and small engine fuels, and pleasure boats. No State may receive more than
5 percent or less than one-third of 1 percent of the total apportionment.

Fish and Wildlife agencies use the funds to pay for stocking sport fish;
acquiring and improving sport fish habitat; providing aquatic resource
education opportunities; conducting fisheries research; maintaining public
fishing access, administering the aquatic resource education program, and
constructing boat ramps, fishing piers, and other facilities for
recreational boating access.

The Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Programs have generated a total of
more than $13.7 billion since their inception (in 1937 in the case of the
Pittman-Robertson Wildlife Restoration Program, and 1950 for the
Dingell-Johnson Sport Fish Restoration Program) to conserve fish and
wildlife resources. The recipient fish and wildlife agencies have matched
these program funds with more than $3.4 billion. This funding is critical
to continue sustaining healthy fish and wildlife populations and provide
opportunities for all to connect with nature.

The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to
conserve, protect and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats for
the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and
trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific
excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated
professionals and commitment to public service. For more information on our
work and the people who make it happen, visit www.fws.gov.

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