Legislature Considers 'Habitat Stamp' to Increase Wildlife Funding

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Outdoor enthusiasts will have to pay ten dollars a year for a permit to hike in state wildlife areas under a measure lawmakers hope will help improve wildlife habitat.

The bill by Republican Representative Joe Stengel of Littleton also would raise resident hunting and fishing license fees for the first time in 13 years.

Fishing licenses would increase from 20 dollars to 35-dollars-75 cents, which includes the wildlife permit, or "wildlife stamp."

Resident hunting licenses for most species would also increase by about 50 percent plus the ten-dollar-75-cent habitat and surcharge fees.

Money from the increased fees will go toward improving existing wildlife habitat as well as purchasing additional conservation easements.

The measure has already been approved by the House. If approved by the Senate and signed by Governor Owens, the permits and fee increases would take effect beginning January First.