On March 20, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke announced more than $1.1 billion in annual national funding for state wildlife agencies from revenues generated by the Pittman-Robertson Wildlife Restoration and Dingell-Johnson Sport Fish Restoration (PRDJ) acts.
State-by-state listings of the final Fiscal Year 2018 apportionments of Wildlife Restoration Program fund can be found here and the Sport Fish Restoration Program fund here. Allocations of the funds are authorized by Congress. To date, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has distributed more than $20.2 billion in apportionments for state conservation and recreation projects. U.S. Department of the Interior News Release
“Vista Outdoor paid over $87 million in federal excise taxes during our fiscal year 2017 to the Pittman-Robertson Fund. These funds are generated on sales of firearms, ammunition and archery gear from our brands including Federal Premium, CCI, Speer, Savage, Stevens, Gold Tip and Bee Stinger,” said Ryan Bronson, Vista Outdoor Director of Conservation and Public Policy.
What is the Pittman-Robertson Excise Tax?
During the early 1900s, many wildlife species were dwindling in numbers or disappearing. Because of this, the ammunition industry stepped forward and asked Congress to impose an excise tax on firearms and ammunition products to help fund wildlife conservation in the United States. The revenue was then allocated to state wildlife agencies for hunter education, shooting programs and conservation efforts. The Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Act, commonly known as the Pittman-Robertson Act, was enacted in 1938.