PENNSYLVANIA — Veterans and other Pennsylvanians enrolled in recovery programs that involve fishing events would be exempt from paying for a state fishing license under legislation introduced again this week by State Senator Jim Brewster.
According to the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, more than 60 different service organizations and hundreds of unique one-day fishing opportunity events across the Commonwealth will qualify for exemption under the legislation.
“I believe it is important that we lower barriers for those involved in the already extremely difficult process of recovery,” Brewster said. “Fishing as part of recovery plans is a growing idea that should be encouraged and nurtured. This legislation recognizes the important work done by volunteers and participants and aims to encourage continued growth.”
Fishing provides time connecting with nature and has been recommended by health care professionals to aid those with a wide range of diagnoses, including mental and physical disabilities, cancer or other chronic diseases, recovery from addiction, traumatic brain injury, and post-traumatic stress disorder, Brewster said.
Senate Bill 146 would provide for a dedicated exemption for individuals participating in therapeutic angling programs sponsored by various established service groups, such as Project Healing Waters and Wounded Warriors.
Brewster has introduced the legislation in previous years, but the sessions expired before the bill received a vote in both chambers.
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