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Fishing the Green River. Photo by Katie Theule.

Interior Secretary Zinke announces $1.1 billion in funding for state wildlife agencies; more than $243 million to Southeast U.S.

Funding benefits conservation, outdoor recreation and the economy

U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke today announced $1.1 billion in annual funding for state wildlife agencies from revenues generated by the Pittman-Robertson Wildlife Restoration and Dingell-Johnson Sport Fish Restoration acts.

The 10 states in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Southeast Region will receive a total of more than $243 million.

“For nearly eight decades, the nation’s hunters and anglers have generated billions of dollars to protect wildlife and habitat simply by purchasing items that help them engage in the outdoor activities they enjoy,” Zinke said. “Their support has helped state wildlife agencies protect our country’s environmental legacy for future generations of hunters, anglers, outdoor recreationists and conservationists.”

The funds, which are distributed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, support critical state conservation and outdoor recreation projects. They are derived from excise taxes paid by the hunting, shooting, boating and angling industries on firearms, bows and ammunition and sport fishing tackle, some boat engines, and small engine fuel.

Allocations of the funds are authorized by Congress. To date, the Service has distributed more than $19 billion in apportionments for state conservation and recreation projects.

“The conservation and outdoor recreation gains made possible by this funding mechanism, which is unique to the United States, serve as the bedrock of wildlife conservation in our country,” said Service Acting Director Jim Kurth.

The recipient state wildlife agencies have matched these funds with approximately $6 billion throughout the years, primarily through hunting and fishing license revenues.

Here are the breakdowns of amounts by state and territory in the Service’s Southeast region:

  • Alabama: $25.2 million
  • Arkansas: $18.6 million
  • Florida: $26 million
  • Georgia: $30 million
  • Kentucky: $19.2 million
  • Louisiana: $22.3 million
  • Mississippi: $15.9 million
  • North Carolina: $31 million
  • Puerto Rico: $6.9 million
  • South Carolina: $15.5 million
  • Tennessee: $30 million
  • U.S. Virgin Islands: $2.5 million

For more information about the WSFR program visit


Phil Kloer, Public Affairs Specialist, 404-679-7299

The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. For more information on our work and the people who can make it happen, visit Connect with the Service on Facebook, follow our tweets, watch the YouTube Channel and download photos from Flickr.

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