March 03, 2010

SENATORS CARDIN, MIKULSKI APPLAUD MORE THAN $8.4 MILLION FOR MARYLAND IN FISH AND WILDLIFE RESTORATION FUNDING

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Benjamin L. Cardin and Barbara A. Mikulski (both D-MD) applauded today's announcement by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service of more than $8.4 million for Maryland to support hunting, sport-fishing, and fish and wildlife conservation and education programs.

The funding, through the Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program, is derived from excise taxes and import duties on sporting firearms, ammunition, archery equipment, sport-fishing equipment, electric outboard motors, and fuel taxes attributable to motorboats and small engines.

"We are stewards of our environment and Marylanders care about preserving the wildlife that inhabit our waterways, wetlands and forests," said Senator Cardin, chairman of the Senate Water and Wildlife Subcommittee.   "These funds will provide opportunities for
Maryland to strengthen conservation and recreation programs that are so important to our citizens and to our way of life."

"As we see bucolic Maryland turn into bumper-to-bumper Maryland , it's more important than ever to preserve land and waterways for future generations to come," Senator Mikulski said.  "These funds will aid in preserving Maryland 's greatest natural resources for Marylanders who depend on it for jobs and recreation. I will continue to fight for funds in the federal checkbook to preserve and protect Maryland 's greatest natural resources."

The Wildlife Restoration apportionment for 2010 totals nearly $473 million, with more than $86 million going to hunter education and firearm and archery range programs. The Sport Fish Restoration apportionment for 2010 totals more than $389 million. The federal government pays up to 75 percent of the cost of each eligible project in the 50 states and up to 100 percent in the commonwealths and territories.  

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources will apply the federal funding to the conservation, restoration, and management of fish and wildlife and their habitats, and to the education of hunters, anglers, and citizens interested in aquatic resources. The DNR will maintain and enhance wildlife habitats on a network of over 30 wildlife management areas across the State, from Dan's Mountain in
Garrett County to Taylor 's Island in Chesapeake Bay to the Sinepuxent Islands on the Eastern Shore .