Under a new law authored by Assemblyman Jim Wood – Santa Rosa, California will issue 365-day fishing licenses instead of the regular calendar-based licenses that end on December 31. The new law will hopefully boost fishing activity and tourism throughout the state, particularly in Northern California.
“Tourism is one of the largest part of the North Coast’s economy, and anglers come from all over to enjoy fishing in our ocean and many lakes, rivers and streams,” Wood said in a statement. “and it’s only common sense to move past the calendar-based license to a model that is used for so many things in your everyday life, like your Costco membership card.”
The law, signed by Governor Gavin Newsom, is designed to boost the fishing tourism industry in the state, which has seen a significant decline in recent decades. Despite the state’s population growth of 60 percent since 1980, fishing license sales are down 55 percent over that same period of time.
“While California has a population of more than 39.8 million people, one of the country’s longest coastlines, more than 3,000 lakes and thousands of rivers and streams, it has the lowest fishing participation rate per capita in the country,” Wood’s office said in a statement.
Not only will this help NorCal locals save some money while fishing their local tributaries, it could help boost the fishing tourism industry which many local businesses rely on. Many prospective fisherman travel from all over the West Coast to catch the many local fish and boosting the state’s outdoor industry, which brings in $92 billion in economic spending annually.