The body representing anglers in South Australia (SA) is set to propose that a paid-for fishing licence scheme be introduced in the state.
Although fishing is currently free in SA, RecFish SA is ready to take the licence proposal to the State Government provided it has sufficient backing.
Feedback so far has been a ‘resounding yes’ according to Executive Officer, Asher Dezsery, but further views will be sought before formalising the proposal.
“What we are hearing [from anglers] is they want the money to be fenced so it can’t be spent on anything other than recreational fishing projects – things like fish stocking, fish health and infrastructure,” Dezsery told ABC News.
“These are really important aspects that keep everyone happy and confident their money isn’t going to just be absorbed into general revenue for the Government.”
However, while DSA’s Primary Industries Minister, Clare Scriven, said she was open to the proposal, she added that she would not rush to introduce a licence.
“I would want to see a proposal that is wholeheartedly supported by the recreational fishing community,” said Scriven. “If that’s not the case, then it’s certainly not on my agenda to pursue that.
“Even if there was that level of support, we would not be introducing it in this term of government.”
RecFish SA says that fishing licences have brought benefits to the sport in eastern states. In Victoria, anglers pay $10 for a three-day licence and $38.50 for a full year, while in New South Wales it costs $7 and $35 respectively. Recreational fishing in SA generates a reported $1 billion for the economy.
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