Mark Udall, a longtime supporter of Colorado's hunters and anglers, introduced legislation today to support Colorado's job-sustaining outdoor recreation industry and expand opportunities for hunters and anglers. The legislation, supported by a coalition of U.S. senators, also includes Udall's Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act, a common-sense plan which allows states to use the excise taxes already collected on sporting equipment and ammunition sales to create and maintain public shooting ranges.
The U.S. Senate failed to pass similar legislation last year despite broad, bipartisan support. The bill died during the 2012 lame-duck session of Congress after a handful of Republican lawmakers objected to language governing duck stamps.
"Hunting and fishing are essential parts of Colorado's heritage and the high quality of life we enjoy as westerners. No one understood this better than my mother. As a member of the NRA, a sharpshooter and an avid angler, she instilled in me a deep appreciation for these outdoor activities," Udall said. "This common-sense bill, which includes my Target Practice and Marksmanship Training Support Act, is about ensuring that Coloradans can pass on our great outdoor traditions for generations to come. It also will ensure that Colorado's outdoor recreation economy, from the smallest tackle shops to the largest outfitters, continue creating the jobs that sustain communities across the state."
Udall has been a strong supporter of the role hunters, anglers and sportsmen play in creating jobs and strengthening Colorado's economy. Earlier this year, Udall introduced a bipartisan and deficit-neutral bill to help states create and maintain public shooting ranges for hunters and sportsmen to responsibly practice their sport and promote firearm safety. Udall also has fought against efforts to sell off Colorado's public lands, which hunters, anglers and sportsmen count on and are the engines of local economies throughout the west.
Udall also has been one of the fiercest proponents of reauthorizing and fully funding the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which is used to improve access to federal lands and support sportsmen and Colorado's outdoor recreation economy.