In Florida it is quite refreshing to read that State Senator Joe Negron (R-Stuart) is making the proposal to drop fishing licensing. The idea is to get the government out of control. There is no reason to control fishing anyway, and the state’s general revenue fund can fund the programs that are now funded by fishing licensing. The assertions, not facts, made by the opposition are as follows.
Assertion 1: Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission says: There will be a loss of $45 million in next year fiscal revenue! The money breaks down as quoted. Notice $13,138,412 is from federal aid – sports fish restoration. Hmmm, how does man “restore” the sports fish in the vast oceans?
Fishing license sales and federal aid received as a result of fishing licenses will total about $45,229,260 in fiscal 2011-12, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Of that, $9,078,257 is from freshwater licenses, $23,012,591 from saltwater licenses and the balance from sports fish restoration federal aid, which requires evidence of paid licenses.
Assertion 2: Coastal Conservation Association Florida says: Absolutely no go! Losing all the environmental causes (and benefits) to finance! (There is no information at this time about what monies this Association loses – lobbying money perhaps.)
Loss of tax revenue and federal aid and aid to lobbyists are not reasons to collect fishing licensing taxes and benefit from federal aid. There is no economic benefit to the state for doing this. There is no procedure improved. There is no regulation needed to make one more responsible. But what is a loss is the existence of bureaucracy being. The government now must go away; it has served its purpose – and the service is no longer needed. Since there are no neighborhood effects, then the private sector can benefit particular environmental causes: the money does not need to flow through government to achieve a better environmental effect.
State Rep. Matt Hudson (R-Naples) also supports this bill. Good. There is no sponsor, yet, but it is good thinking on the part of the Senator, who also proposes to supplant the licensing revenue with revenue from the state general fund. Private support groups within the state can and shall benefit the legitimate environmental programs of interest.