This really does make more sense than the old way. Thanks to MOGA (Montana Outfitters and Guides Association) and all who supported the bill. Spread the word.
New Nonresident Fishing License Choices Begin March 1
Starting March 1, 2022, nonresidents will now have different choices in how they purchase their Montana fishing licenses. Nonresidents will now be able to purchase either a 1-day license, 5-day license, or seasonal license. Nonresidents can purchase the 1-day license at a reduced rate from the previous 2-day consecutive license and they can purchase multiple 1-day licenses for the exact days they wish to fish, with no requirement that these 1-day licenses be for consecutive days.
This change in nonresident fishing license choices is a direct result of legislation brought forth by MOGA during the last legislative session. Several MOGA members, and business owners, in gateway communities expressed their concerns over the high cost of the 2-day nonresident license, often citing examples of families who declined short term (half day and 1-day) trips due to the excessive cost of these fishing licenses. MOGA listened and brought forth HB 260 last legislative session, cosponsored by Representative Seth Berglee (R-Joliet) and Representative Tyson Running Wolf (D-Browning). This bipartisan bill received nearly unanimous support in its journey through the House and Senate and was signed into law by Governor Gianforte on April 30, 2021. The bill included a positive fiscal note estimated at over $1.7 million per license year – money that will directly benefit conservation efforts. Many thanks to Rep. Berglee for his enthusiasm in initially sponsoring the bill and his tenacity in shepherding the bill through many hearings last legislative session.
Beginning March 1, it is up to you as outfitters to educate your clients on the new choices for nonresident fishing licenses. If they are fishing with you for 1 day or a half day, they can now buy a license for $31.50. Previously, their only choice was the 2-day consecutive license at $42.50. If they are fishing with you for multiple days and these days are spread apart, they no longer are required to buy blocks of the 2-day consecutive license. They simply will buy a 1-day license for each of the days they are fishing. Clients doing multiple day summer pack trips with fishing and for those clients doing day-trip float trips will find this change very beneficial. These are real, concrete savings for our nonresident guests, provides better customer service for the visiting angler, and encourages family participation.