Frequently Asked Questions
Q:Why was the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation (RBFF) created?
A: RBFF was formed to carry out a national strategic plan to increase participation in fishing and boating, thereby increasing stewardship for the aquatic resources that support these activities.
Participation in recreational fishing and boating is changing and was on a downward trajectory in recent years. Projections of demographic trends indicate that in the next 25 years, significant population growth will be occurring only among groups who have not traditionally been as involved in boating and fishing. This indicates obvious economic impacts in both private and public sectors, with additional considerations in the areas of resource stewardship and quality of life issues.
Lower angler and boater participation means less funding for state and national wildlife agencies, negative economic impacts on the fishing and boating industry and fewer stewards to help conserve and protect our aquatic resources.
RBFF was created to maintain and even increase participation among those groups where fishing and boating have always played an important role in their cultural heritage, while diversifying to include a wider representation--building new traditions for all in the 21st century.
The Strategic Plan for the National Outreach and Communication Program was developed to effectively address these participation challenges and to assure the passing on of the rich legacy and traditions associated with American recreational fishing and boating. In so doing, the stewardship of aquatic resources will be assured and the associated recreational benefits guaranteed for future generations.
Q:How is RBFF funded?
A: RBFF’s funding is administered through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (the “Agency”) pursuant to a cooperative agreement between the Agency and RBFF. The original source of the funds, the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund, is comprised of excise taxes paid by manufacturers of fishing tackle and a consumer tax on motorboat fuel. Please click here for an infographic representation of how RBFF is funded.
Q:Does RBFF accept donations?
A: Absolutely! RBFF is recognized as a section 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization by the Internal Revenue Service. As such, your cash and new product donations to RBFF are tax-deductible.
Q:Is RBFF a membership organization?
A: RBFF has no dues paying members. We exist to increase public participation in recreational fishing, boating and aquatic stewardship. Any business or organization with a vested interest is invited to take advantage of the resources, programs and products we offer.
Q:How can I stay in the loop?
A: RBFF is dedicated to keeping its partners and stakeholders "in the loop," encouraging partner and stakeholder participation, and keeping RBFF partners and stakeholders feeling invited, included, listened to and supported in efforts to achieve mutually-shared goals. Please subscribe to the NewsWaves e-newsletter and follow us on LinkedIn for updates on RBFF’s programs and accomplishments, as well as fishing and boating industry news. Our social networking pages are a great source of news and sharable consumer content. Members of the press are invited to subscribe to RBFF’s News Alerts.
Q:Why boating AND fishing?
A: According to the Special Report on Fishing, fishing is a top gateway activity to the outdoors. And according to the National Marine Manufacturers Association, fishing is the number one activity done from a boat. Recreational boating and fishing contribute to conserving aquatic resources through excise taxes on fishing equipment and motorboat fuel that fund the Federal Aid in Sport Fish Restoration Program. In addition, fishing license sales and federal aid constitute an average of 83% of each state's fisheries management revenue. The retention and recruitment of boaters and anglers will ensure continued funding for aquatic conservation and restoration at both the federal and state level.
Q:Does RBFF’s mission include increasing awareness of all types of boating?
A: RBFF's focus is on boating as it relates to fishing, and fishing as it relates to boating. Although we encourage all types of boating and fishing, boats typically not used as platforms for fishing fall outside RBFF's immediate focus.
Q:Does RBFF provide equipment or funding to events?
A: RBFF’s main concentration is on its national campaigns. Therefore, RBFF does not typically support local events with equipment or funding.