The State of Idaho takes understandable pride in its outdoors and the regulatory process designed to protect the health, safety and welfare of the recreating public. The state Outfitters and Guides Licensing Board works diligently to ensure that qualified individuals are available throughout the state to help provide safe, informative excursions for people who want to enjoy our varied resources.
Contrary to statements made relating to foxes and henhouses, the board is comprised of five members, of which only three are licensed outfitters and guides, as required by statute. These three individuals, as well as a fourth who represents the general public, are appointed by the governor. Our fifth board member is appointed by, and represents, the Idaho Fish and Game Commission. All board members are subject to confirmation by the state senate.
All licensees are held to extremely high standards for training and public relations, and no circumvention of licensing requirements or training will be tolerated. Also, the board does not receive any payment as a percentage of earnings from the licensed outfitters. Ours is a self-funded agency that operates entirely on fees received from the issuance of outfitter and guide licenses. We receive no general fund assistance.
Much of the impetus behind Idaho’s outfitter and guide regulatory process is grounded in helping to protect our resources. For years, Idaho has been experiencing an annual influx of more and more people striving to take advantage of the varied recreational opportunities that abound here. Through cooperative management efforts with resource managers in the state (from the Idaho Department of Fish & Game, U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management and the Idaho Department of Lands), the Licensing Board helps to monitor and control the amount of commercial use the rivers, lakes, and trails receive.
Our natural resource base is limited and appropriate controls must be in place to help protect them in the long run.