A bill to increase hunting and fishing license fees in the state is on its way to the Governor’s desk. Undersecretary at the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Bryan McClinton said while license fees will increase, they also add more privileges. For example, a hunting license goes from $29 to $34 but that includes archery and primitive hunting so that will save hunters who use those styles $15 annually.

“It basically combines fees to make it less confusing and kind of expands privileges, but it does go up to be closer to what Texas, Florida, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Alabama charge to their hunters and fishermen,” said McClinton.

McClinton said the bill is an effort to restructure fees to help the department become self-sufficient again due to a loss in revenue from oil and gas royalties. Recreational fees have not been since 2000 and most commercial licenses since 1986. McClinton said the legislature had to earmark $17 million to keep the agency afloat.

“This will get us a lot closer to being financially independent and it still stays with the North American Conservation Model user-pay that’s used throughout this country,” said McClinton.

Another added benefit in the restructuring of fees for the life of the license, for example, a current fishing license expires June 30th of each year, when the bill takes effect, McClinton said you’ll get more bang for your buck.

“The other great thing that this bill was just amended into it, is the 365-day license. This license when you buy it is going to be good for 365 days,” said McClinton.

The fee increases go into effect in July of 2022.

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