Montana has passed a law that guarantees hunting licenses to the clients of outfitters. The guaranteed licenses will cost more, however.
The state’s Private Lands/Public Wildlife Advisory Council produced the bill by working with landowners, outfitters and sportsmen.
“It will give the sportsman more hunting access, the landowner compensation for raising game on their land and providing public hunting opportunities, and the outfitter the ability to give their booked client a license to hunt,” said Jean Johnson, Montana Outfitter and Guides Association executive director.
Non-resident hunters can still apply for the regular lower-priced licenses. This year, of 6,950 nonresident hunters who applied, 5,600 will receive the big game combination license.
The new law authorizes variablepriced licenses starting in 1996. It will not only guarantee licenses for nonresident hunters, but also will establish a landowner incentive program. Landowners who open deeded land to hunting will receive a portion of the extra money raised by the variable-priced licenses based on the amount of land they open.
“The variable price license will be based on the demand for licenses by non-resident hunters” who choose to hunt with an outfitter, said Patrick Graham, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks director. The price will be set by December to sell a targeted number, he said. xxxx Boat buyer’s guide Before you shop, get a free copy of “Guide to Buying and Selling a Boat,” from Boat/USA, Consumer Affairs, 880 S. Pickett, Alexandria, Va., telephone (703) 461-2864.