Legislators pass license fee increases

November 02, 2009 at 06:24 PM

Hunters and anglers are probably going to pay more for that privilege next year.

Both the Illinois House and Senate approved an increase in hunting and fishing license fees during last week’s veto session in Springfield. All that is required for the increases to become law is a signature on Senate Bill 1846 by Gov. Pat Quinn.

Department of Natural Resources Director Marc Miller has pushed for the fee increases—$2 for a fishing license and $5 for a hunting license—to help his agency. The increases are estimated to raise an additional $3.5 million for fish and wildlife conservation.

If Quinn signs the bill, resident fishing licenses will increase from $12.50 to $14.50. A deer permit would go from $15 to $25 and hunting licenses would rise from $7 to $12.

Fee increases would go into effect Jan. 1, 2010.

Here is the text of DNR’s interpretation of Senate Bill 1846.

DNR’s take on Senate Bill 1846

IDNR is committed to improving quality recreational opportunities for its constituents, not only in the coming fiscal year but in years to come. In order to secure the future of the agency and its mission, we are asking our constituents to support us through several fee increases. The agency will diligently protect the integrity of dedicated funds that support the mission of IDNR and protect the supportive intent of the individuals who provide those funds, through hunting and fishing licenses, stamps and other fees. These proposed fees will allow the agency to enhance conservation opportunities, improve quality recreation and make critical hires for the agency, all of which lead to a better overall experience for outdoor enthusiasts.

Migratory Waterfowl Fee (Increase)

The cost of the State Migratory Waterfowl Stamp would increase from $10.00 to $15.00. The increase will be used specifically to improve and maintain state waterfowl areas. Currently, revenue generated from Migratory Waterfowl Stamp fees do not adequately support Waterfowl operations. Requires Legislative action.

FY10 - $111k FY11 - $243k

Deer Hunting Permit Fee (Increase)

The Resident Deer Hunting Permit Fee would increase from $15.00 to $25.00. The fee was last increased approximately 25 years ago. This fee would support an increase in Wildlife management staff.

Would require legislative action and an administrative rule change.

FY10 - $559k FY11 - $1.118M

Hunting, Fishing, and Sportsman Combination License Fee (Increase)

This proposal would increase all resident hunting and fishing licenses by $7.00.

Resident fishing licenses would increase from $12.50 to $14.50.

A Non-resident 10-day fishing license would increase from $12.50 to $19.50 and a non-resident annual fishing license would increase from 24.50 to $31.50

The fishing license fees were last increased over 10 years ago. Fishing license sales support fish and aquatic management throughout Illinois.

Resident hunting license fees would increase from $7.00 to $12.00. Non-Resident annual hunting licenses would increase from $50.00 to $57.00. Non-resident 10-day hunting licenses would increase from $28.00 to $35.00. Resident hunting licenses were last raised in 1974. Revenue generated from this fee increase will fund an increase in Wildlife program staff as funds become available.

Sportsman combination licenses would increase from $18.50 to $25.50. (Only Illinois residents are eligible for a Sportsman license).

Would require Legislative action and an administrative rule change.

FY10 - $548k FY11 - $1.095M

Environmental Consultation Fees (New)

Currently, local units of government and private entities are required, by statue, to complete an environmental consultation review with the IDNR. This proposal would charge a fee of $500.00 to local governments or private entities seeking this consultation.

This fee will help cover the cost of performing these reviews, including supporting staff and the automated EcoCAT web based system that allows users to get results substantially faster. After getting the review results, cities sometimes charge developers for this information that they currently receive for free from the IDNR.

Requires legislative action.

FY10 - $545k FY11 - $1.190M

Office of Water Resources Permit Fees (New)

Create a series of regulatory fees for the IDNR Office of Water Resources ranging from $400.00 to $5,000 specifically for OWR permits and Lake Michigan water allocations. The proposal also creates an annual fee (TBD) for the use of the Chain O’Lakes, to be collected from boaters. These fees will fund permit and water allocation services, flood control and dam safety programs, and operation of the Stratton Lock and Dam.

Requires legislative action.

FY10 - $394k FY11 - $1.140M