Ohio auditor suggests increasing fishing, hunting permit costs to boost annual revenue

Associated Press

Ohio should increase the cost of its fishing and hunting permits to boost yearly revenue, the state auditor recommended.

Auditor Dave Yost made those and other recommendations Thursday after a performance audit of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, the Columbus Dispatch reported (http://bit.ly/1zcvFNK ).

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He proposed increasing the fishing license cost from $19 to $23 for Ohio residents. For nonresidents, he recommended increasing the license cost from $40 to $48.

Yost also suggested that increasing the cost of a nonresident deer hunting permit from $24 to $38 would raise more than $250,000 per year.

The audit showed that Ohio charges less for permits than surrounding states. The proposed fee changes for fishing and hunting permits could increase annual revenue by more than $1.7 million.

Yost's other proposals for the state agency include increasing the rates for overnight stays at Ohio campsites and converting some seasonal positions to part-time year-round ones to avoid unemployment costs in the offseason.

The suggested changes could generate more than $8.3 million annually and nearly $4 million in one-time savings, the audit showed.

ODNR Director James Zehringer said the agency is reviewing the recommendations.

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Information from: The Columbus Dispatch, http://www.dispatch.com