|Taken from Pg 194 of the 2014 & 2015 proposed budget|
The beginning of every year brings around the typical state budget issues and discussion that are sure to include items close to the sportsman's and sportswoman's heart and the recent proposal holds true. Last year it was the states pheasant stocking program and while looking over the 2014 & 2015 proposed budget it looks like the state fish hatcheries are the target this year. The proposed cut show a savings of $299,820 over two years from closing one of Connecticut's state fish hatcheries, which realistically amounts to the tiniest piece of sand in comparison to the waste of state government.
Look, I'm tired of giving up more of my paycheck to support the overly fat programs that are part of our state spending and I agree cuts need to be made and making those cuts are never easy, but to me when they target outdoor related expenses they are relying on two things. First is the uproar that the sportsman and sportswomen of Connecticut will most surely have and the hope of these sportsman groups proposing some type of license increase or new stamp to fund the program to keep it from being cut.
Considering that the majority of the money Connecticut sportsman pay out each years ends up in the general fund, raising the licenses or creating new stamps are NOT something many of us would support. If these new increases or funds where put directly into the programs and budgets they are meant to support, well many sportsman would most likely reluctantly agree.
Some numbers on effects of Recreational fishing here in Connecticut.
The savings created by closing the hatchery in this case would be minor to the potential of costs in the future to reopen said hatchery or improve and grow others. Also the loss or reductions in these outdoor programs will most certainly result in lost revenue as more and more sportsman stop spending the money on them or go spend their limited funds in other states that are more sportsman friendly.
No matter what side of the fence you are on with these budget issues, it is extremely for everyone to express your views to your elected officials. Send an email, make a phone call, write a letter it doesn't matter as long as you do SOMETHING! You can find your legislator and his contact information by visiting the CT CGA website or using this link: Find Your Legislator