Friday, February 13, 1998The Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks Commission is now seeking public comment on a proposal to require all commercial users of state fishing access sites and other FWP-administered lands to register with FWP before undertaking any activities on those lands. Commissioners tentatively approved the registration requirement at their January meeting.
The registration process would be initiated during 1998 to determine the extent of commercial use of FWP lands and to provide information that can be used in making future management decisions regarding those lands.
Commercial users that would be affected by this registration requirement include: fishing outfitters and guides, rafting companies, hunting outfitters, floater shuttle companies, bird watching/eco-tour organizations and more.
FWP officials suggest there could be as many as 500-600 commercial users of FWP lands statewide. Due to the current large number of commercial users, it would be necessary to charge a registration fee of $10 to cover the administrative costs of the registration process. The state agency's goal is not to turn the registration process into a revenue-generating venture, but simply to cover the direct costs associated with its registration and data collection efforts.
Written comments on or questions concerning the proposed registration requirement should be sent to: Tom Reilly, Fish, Wildlife & Parks, 1420 East 6th Avenue, P.O. Box 200701, Helena, MT 59620-0701; telephone (406) 444-7885. Comments will be accepted by the Commission through March 3, 1998. The FWP Commission is scheduled to act on the proposal at its March meeting.