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Military hunters, fishers get a big break on license and permit fees

by Nick Stubbs
Thunderbolt staff writer

Florida Military members can save a hefty $63.50 on Florida's all-encompassing Gold Sportsman fishing and hunting license package, which provides all available hunting and fishing permits in one bundle.

Normally weighing in at $83.50 for state residents, active duty military members who are stationed in Florida need only $20 to cover every hunting and fishing contingency, including salt and freshwater fishing, hunting, wildlife management area permits, archery, muzzelloading, turkey, waterfowl, snook and crawfish permits. In short, everything a Florida Sportsman needs.

The reduced fee comes by way of Rep. Will Kendrick (D-Carrabelle) and Sen. Jeff Atwater (R-Palm Beach County), who co-sponsored a bill cutting back fees for any active duty men and women who can prove they are based in Florida. The law went into effect July 1, but is retroactive to May 24. Those who purchased between then and June 30 can send their original license to FWC - Office of Licensing and Permitting, 2590 Executive Center Circle, Suite 200, Tallahassee, FL 32301. A daytime phone number is required, along with orders showing proof of being stationed within the state. A copy of the license should be kept before mailing the original.

Within three weeks, a refund for the difference between the new, low rate and the previous rate will be mailed.

The Military Gold Sportsman's License is available at local Tax Collector's offices.

Anyone seeking additional information is encouraged to log onto the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Web site at http://floridaconservation.org/license/.

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