House Republicans Shoot Down Hunting Fee Hikes

Annapolis – During yesterday’s session of the Maryland House of Delegates, the House Republican Caucus led a successful effort to kill HB 1419, legislation that would have drastically increased fees for hunting licenses and stamps.

“I am pleased that our colleagues on the both sides of the aisle were able to appreciate the impact this bill would have had to rural areas, said Minority Whip Jeannie Haddaway-Riccio who spoke against the bill during the debate. “Many people in rural areas rely on hunting season to feed their families and the increases in this bill would have been devastating to them.”

While smaller than the increases originally floated by the Department of Natural Resources who requested the bill, HB 1419 would have increased hunting license fees 63% and trapping fees by 96%. The bill creates a $40 deer stamp, increases the Migratory Game Bird Stamp 33%, and creates several new stamps.

“With all of the taxes hikes and fee increases the House of Delegates has foisted on to Maryland’s citizens over the last few days, I am relieved that they found one they could say no to”, said Minority Leader Anthony J. O’Donnell. “I am glad the House listened to our caucus members who spoke so passionately against the bill.”

In a chamber that holds the committee process sacred, a bill’s failure on the floor is a rarity in Maryland’s House of Delegates. Under the House Rules, a bill can be reconsidered and brought up for another vote within a small window of time. But with today’s adjournment of the House of Delegates, that window has closed and the bill is dead for the year.

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