State Comptroller Report: Hunters & Fishermen spend $5 Billion in NY

More than 7,500 lakes and ponds, 70,000 miles of rivers, streams and coastline, and millions of acres of forest and open space contribute to approximately $5 billion spent by hunters and fisherman in the state, which accounts for the second-highest such expenditures in any state, according to a new report released by State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli. “Residents’ and visitors’ spending on licenses, equipment and travel boosts our economy and supports our management of fish and wildlife programs,” DiNapoli said, in a statement. Nearly two million people fish, hunt or trap in New York, ranking the state third nationwide.

Fishing is the most popular, with two-thirds of New York participants fishing exclusively, followed by 28 percent who fish and hunt and nine percent who hunt only.

A total of just over 40,000 licenses have been issued in Saratoga County (about 12,700 for hunting, 20,700 fishing, and 6,500 combined) compared with neighboring Warren (about 34,500 total), Washington (11,100) counties, according to the report.

Based on population numbers, about 17.7 percent of Saratoga residents purchased licenses, roughly equal to the per-resident numbers in Albany, Rensselaer and Washington counties, but dwarfed by the nearly 44 percent of residents in Warren County who own licenses. (See graph above for a county-by-county breakdown).

Consumer spending on these sporting activities totaled more than $5 billion in 2011, the most recent year for which such figures are available. Nearly $1.9 billion was spent on trip-related purchases including transportation, lodging and food. Nonresidents generated 20 percent of the revenue collected from license fees in the 2012-13 license year. Revenues from the sale of annual licenses to fish, hunt and trap have contributed an average of $45.3 million a year to the New York State Conservation Fund in the last five fiscal years.

The full report “Fishing, Hunting and Trapping in New York State” can be found at: http://www.osc.state.ny.us/reports/economic/sportpersons_11302015.pdf