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Industry welcomes new 12-month fishing licence for California

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California, which has one of the longest coastlines in the US, has seen fishing licence sales decline by 55% since 2009.

The approval of a 12-month fishing licence in California comes as welcome news to the state’s fishing tackle industry.

The American Sportfishing Association (ASA), the Californian Sportfishing League and the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) are among more than 20 organisations that have been campaigning for the move.

Currently licences expire on December 31st, regardless of when they are issued, a factor which fishing interests believe has contributed to a licence sales decline of 55 per cent since 2009, compared to a 4.3 per cent increase nationally.

But this week, the California Assembly’s Appropriations Committee voted unanimously to support a licence that expires a year after the date of purchase.

While the legislation still has to overcome several hurdles before reaching Governor Gavin Newsom’s desk, this week’s vote by one of the legislature’s most influential committees is the strongest sign yet that it will be passed into law.

California has the lowest fishing participation in the country per capita and its licence is the second most expensive.

The decline has occurred despite a 60 per cent population growth in California since 1980. The state also has one of the longest coastlines in the US and an abundance of freshwater lakes, rivers and streams.

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