County Supervisors have approved spending 2020’s Fish and Game fines on a number of educational programs and organizations.

With $32,000 to spend, the County Fish and Game Fines Committee, which makes recommendations on who should share the limited funds “for projects related to public education and recreation, habitat improvement, research, or the purchase of field equipment,” according to a County staff report. “Each year, as part of the budget process, the Board approves a lump sum budget for Fish and Game. The Committee then meets to develop a list of recommended projects for the upcoming fiscal year.”

Under “educational” projects the County gave out a total of $18,000, to:
• A Boy Scouts program that teaches conservation in local schools, $1,000;
• An annual women’s clinic teaching things like outdoor survival, shooting skills, dog training, wild game cooking, horse packing, archery, and First Aid, $1,500;
• Junior Pheasant Day, a program teaching kids hunter safety training, tracking game and identifying game, $2,500;
• Junior Fishing Day, a program that gets kids off the streets and into streams to learn how to fish, sponsored by the Paso Robles Optimist Club, $2,500;
• Pacific Wildlife Care to support the non-profit group, based in Morro Bay, in its mission to rescue sick, injured and abandoned wildlife, rehabilitate them and release them back into the wild, $1,500;
• Learning Among the Oaks is an outdoor science program in Arroyo Grande (see: www.learningamongtheoaks.org), $3,000;
• Fort Hope, a western-style, frontier town camp for kids teaching fishing, archery, animal care and more that teaches and mentors youngsters, $1,500;
• Kid’s Outdoor Adventure, an outdoor adventure day in Arroyo Grande including activities like fishing, hiking and campfire safety, $1,000; and,
• Capt. Rollo’s — Kids at Sea program started in Morro Bay that takes kids out on a free ocean fishing trips to learn about the ocean environment, wildlife and fishing, $3,500.
The committee also recommended spending $5,000 on a program that provides water for wildlife in their native habitats; kept $2,578 for operating expenses; and set aside $7,000 filed under “miscellaneous.”
According to the County’s report, spending these monies, “result in increased fish and wildlife conservation and awareness, rehabilitation, and habitat improvement as well as community activities that include hunter safety training and mentoring of young people. This is consistent with the County’s goal to promote a livable community.”