Dems try again to increase price of duck stamps

A group of Senate Democrats on Thursday introduced legislation to increase the price of duck stamps from $15 to $25.

Sen. Mark BegichMark Peter BegichAlaska Senate race sees cash surge in final stretch Alaska group backing independent candidate appears linked to Democrats Sullivan wins Alaska Senate GOP primary MORE (D-Alaska) is the lead sponsor of the bill. It is also supported by Sens. Max BaucusMax Sieben BaucusThe good, bad, and ugly of Tester's Blackfoot-Clearwater Stewardship Act Biden nominates Nicholas Burns as ambassador to China Cryptocurrency industry lobbies Washington for 'regulatory clarity' MORE (D-Mont.), Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterDemocrats wrangle to keep climate priorities in spending bill  On The Money — Powell pivots as inflation rises Senators huddle on path forward for SALT deduction in spending bill MORE (D-Mont.) and Chris CoonsChris Andrew CoonsHouse passes bill to expedite financial disclosures from judges Overnight Energy & Environment — Presented by ExxonMobil — Dems seek to preserve climate provisions Democrats wrangle to keep climate priorities in spending bill  MORE (D-Del.).

The legislation allows the first increase in the duck stamp since 1991 and would pave the way for a $30 stamp in five years. It also contains a waiver for subsistence hunters.The stamps, purchased by duck hunters, are used to pay for wetlands conservation.

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Last year, the Senate killed a similar proposal in the lead-up to the December fiscal-cliff fight when supporters were unable to win a budget point of order against the fee increase brought by Sen. Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsPress: For Trump endorsement: The more sordid, the better Those predicting Facebook's demise are blowing smoke If bitcoin is 'digital gold,' it should be taxed like gold MORE (R-Ala.).

“Ninety-eight cents out of every dollar generated by the sale of Duck Stamps goes directly to purchase or lease wetland habitat for protection, successfully raising hundreds of millions of dollars for conservation efforts. But since the price of a stamp hasn’t changed in over twenty years, it’s lost over half of its value,” Begich said in a press release.

The legislation is supported by the conservation group Ducks Unlimited.

“We are committed to seeing this legislation signed into law and look forward to working with Senators on both sides of the aisle to enact this," said CEO Dale Hall.

Established in 1934, the Duck Stamp program has raised $750 million and preserved over five million acres of wetlands critical for waterfowl conservation.

The wetlands also support the activities of sportsmen, birders and subsistence users.