Apr. 14, 2021

HARRISBURG – Reps. Parke Wentling (R-Crawford/Erie/Lawrence/Mercer) and Patrick Harkins (D-Erie), prime sponsors of legislation to broaden the allocation of proceeds from Lake Erie fishing permits (signed into law as Act 56 of 2020), today commended the PA Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) Board of Commissioners for awarding approximately $648,300 in Erie Access Improvement grants.

“Much like an experienced fisherman choosing the right equipment or bait to reel in the catch of a lifetime, Act 56 expands the types of fishing-related projects, such as marina improvements, fish cleaning stations and many other angler-attracting incentives, that can be funded through revenue generated by the sale of Lake Erie fishing permits,” said Wentling. “I am pleased to see the PFBC moving forward with the greater flexibility made possible through this new law by investing these funds to improve and increase public fishing opportunities throughout Lake Erie, Presque Isle Bay and their tributaries. Without question, Act 56 is a win-win, not just for fishing enthusiasts, but also for our local businesses and the economy as well.”

Previous law restricted the use of funds from sales of this combination trout/salmon Lake Erie fishing permit to habitat and fishing access improvement.

Projects awarded through the 2020-21 round of Erie Access Improvement grants include:

• Erie-Western PA Port Authority, Holland Street Pier Fishing Access – Phase 2, Presque Isle Bay
Phase 2 will construct a handicapped accessible fishing area of roughly 510 feet in length and is the final piece of the West Holland Street Pier project, linking the new fishing pier at the north end with additional water access along the man-made dock wall to the south.

• Erie-Western PA Port Authority, Lampe Marina Fish Cleaning Station, Lake Erie
The Port Authority, along with recreational anglers and charter boat captains, has been struggling for years to manage the waste generated from cleaning fish. Funding will be used for the design and construction of a refrigerated storage building and fish cleaning station at Lampe Marina.

• Fairview Township, Avonia Beach Park Improvements, Lake Erie
In recent years, Avonia Beach Park sustained damage along its lakefront due to high water levels in Lake Erie and strong winter storms. Funding will be used to design and construct a revetment system to allow continued public access to the park’s educational resources, recreational opportunities and fishing opportunities in Lake Erie.

• Regional Science Consortium, Lake Erie Buoy Project, Lake Erie and Presque Isle Bay
The Regional Science Consortium operates four buoys in Lake Erie to provide real-time information on wind, water, and wave conditions through the consortium’s smartphone application, their website, the NOAA-National Data Buoy Center, and the Great Lakes Observing System. The long-term benefits of funding this project include lake condition forecasting and the contribution to a long-term dataset that can provide information regarding the aquatic health and water quality of Lake Erie over time.

Lake Erie stamps have generated roughly $600,000 to $700,000 in annual revenue since 1994.

Representative Parke Wentling
17th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Ty McCauslin