Colorado shares in fish and wildlife funding

Colorado will receive nearly $27 million as its share of almost $1.1 billion in excise tax revenues distributed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to state and territorial fish and wildlife agencies.

The revenue comes from taxes on the sale of archery equipment, firearms and ammunition, fishing equipment and tackle and electric outboard motors. Revenue also comes from fuel taxes on motorboats and small engines. The funding covers up to 75 percent of eligible fish and wildlife projects, while states contribute at least 25 percent.

“People who enjoy hunting, fishing, boating and recreational shooting provide a strong foundation for conservation funding in this country,” said Interior Secretary Sally Jewell. “The taxes they pay on equipment and boating fuel support critical fish and wildlife management and conservation efforts, create access for recreational boating and underpin educational programs that help get kids outdoors.”

Dan Ashe, director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, said the tax revenues have created a legacy for wildlife conservation and improved access to the outdoors.  “Anyone who enjoys our nation’s outdoor heritage should thank hunters, anglers, recreational boaters and target shooters,” he said.

Total distributions for the 2014 fiscal year were nearly $239 million higher this year than last because of funds that initially were sequestered, but then returned as well as an increase in tax revenues from the sales of firearms and ammunition.