MIDWAY, Fla. (WTXL) - It's a big catch for the Florida gaming industry.
The state of Florida is reeling in two large grants from hunting and fishing licenses. The grant disbursement was announced Tuesday in Midway.
The Department of the Interior and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced a disbursement of more than $26 million in grants to the state of Florida.
In a ceremony, United States Principal Deputy Director Greg Sheehan awarded the Pittman-Robertson and Dingell-Johnson grants.
The yearly distributed grants have been around since the 1930's and are funded by an excise tax on many sporting goods, as well as hunting and fishing equipment. Since the programs began, states have received more than $10 billion from the grants.
"Three quarters of those dollars come from the federal government and 25 percent comes from the state. And then there are certain terms of the grants that they are to be used for," said Sheehan. "So they need to be used for wild life conservation on Pittman-Robinson, for example they can't be used for law enforcement or other sorts of things. It's really dollars to hit the ground. Dollars to run these wildlife management areas."
Those dollars support conservation efforts for wild habitats and species reintroduction. Money from the grants also helps maintain shooting ranges, fish hatcheries, boat ramps and outdoor recreation programs.
Wildlife management areas like this one at the Joe Budd Youth Conservation Center would not be possible without this funding.more»