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PFBC Chronology
Significant Commission Events, 1866 to Present
  • 1866 - A convention was held in Harrisburg to investigate pollution in mountain lakes and streams and the stopping of spring shad runs by dams, which resulted in Governor Andrew G. Curtin signing the law that named James Worrall Pennsylvania's first Commissioner of Fisheries.
  • 1867 - The first fishway was constructed at the Columbia Dam on the Susquehanna River.
  • 1868 - Legislature passed a law prohibiting the use of seines for taking fish within 200 yards of any device erected for the passage of fish.
  • 1870 - Thad Norris, a private citizen, purchased 450 bass taken from the Potomac River at Harpers Ferry and released them in the Delaware River on October 26, just below the Lehigh River Dam at Easton. Residents along the Susquehanna and Schuylkill rivers later did the same thing.
  • 1873 - Some 2.7 million young shad hatched and planted in the Susquehanna River. About 2,044 bass taken from the Delaware River and stocked in other Pennsylvania waters.
  • 1875 - The legislature appropriated $2,000 to purchase 9 acres in Corry and $3,000 for its immediate improvement to construct the “Western Hatchery.”  William Buller appointed as Superintendent.
  • 1876 - Calico bass planted in the Susquehanna River near Harrisburg.
  • 1878 - Act of June 3, 1878, forbade fishing on Sunday.
  • 1879 - United States Fish Commission distributed 12,000 carp to individuals in 25 states, including Pennsylvania.
  • Pennsylvania Fish Commission enlarged by three additional members.
  • 1883 - The "Eastern Station" built on leased property (Troxell) on the Little Lehigh River.
  • 1884 - The "Rogers" fish ladder was erected at the Columbia Dam on the Susquehanna River.
  • 1885 - A $5,000 legislative appropriation established a hatchery in Erie that began operating on December 12.
  • 1886 - The first Brown Trout eggs (10,000) were received from Germany and hatched at the Corry Hatchery.
  • 1888 - The first recorded stocking of Rainbow Trout in the Susquehanna River.
  • 1892 - The Commission had Jackson and Sharp of Wilmington, Delaware, build the rail car "Susquehanna" to transport fish.  It was delivered to the Commission on June 5, 1892. The railcar was in operation through 1914 (more about the Susquehanna).
  • 1893 - Legislative appropriation enabled the establishing of the shad propagation station at Bristol.
  • 1893 - The Commission participated in Chicago World’s Fair of 1893, The Columbian Exposition, with live fish displays (more about fairs).
  • 1895 - The Fish Commission abandoned the cultivation of German carp and attempted to raise black bass.
  • 1901 - Legislature passed a bill designating certain species of fish in either of two classes; game or food.
  • 1903 - Bellefonte Hatchery opened on October 9, J. P. Creveling named superintendent. Citizens of Bellefonte raised $3,500 for hatchery land and railroad siding to the grounds. Property turned over to the department on August 9. October 16: Deeds turned over to the department for the Pleasant Mount Hatchery grounds.
  • 1904 - About 90,900 frogs were distributed. More than 10.2 million Chain Pickerel propagated. Pickerel had never before been propagated in any fish cultural establishment in the United States. Yellow Perch propagation began.
  • 1904 - The Commission participated in St. Louis World's Fair of 1904, The Louisiana Purchase Exposition, with live fish displays (more about fairs).
  • 1905 - Citizens of Crawford County made a gift to the Commission of the Crawford Hatchery, located about a mile from Conneaut Lake, Union City Hatchery completed November 27.
  • 1906 - Spruce Creek Hatchery, Huntingdon County, started in June. Smelt hatched at Torresdale Hatchery planted in Begelow Lake.
  • 1907 - Experiments began on the artificial propagation of freshwater pearl mussels. Some 80,000 coho fingerlings planted in the Lackawaxen and Equinunk. Two were taken by hook and line in the Lackawaxen in July.
  • 1907 - The Commodore Perry, a 70-foot stream tug, was built for the Commission's use on Lake Erie. The boat was christened April 21, 1908 (more about the Commodore Perry).
  • 1909 - Law passed forbidding the emptying into any waters of the Commonwealth any waste deleterious to fish.
  • 1910 - The Holtwood Dam was built on the Susquehanna River by Pennsylvania Water & Power Co., forming Lake Aldred.
  • 1911 - September 1: Crawford Hatchery abandoned.
  • 1912 - About 500,000 Muskellunge eggs hatched at Union City, the first to be planted in the waters of the state.
  • 1913 - Spruce Creek Hatchery sold. Commodore Perry was a valuable aid in raising Perry's flagship, the Niagara, from Misery Bay. First effort to control motor boating by law, Act 292 signed by Governor John K. Tenner, requiring motorboats (except steamboats) to have an efficient muffler.
  • 1914 - Honus Wagner, Hall of Fame 2nd baseman for the Pittsburgh Pirates, named a Pennsylvania Fish Commissioner in the spring of 1914.
  • 1914 - New hatchery erected on Erie filter plant grounds.
  • 1915 - Fish wardens and deputy fish wardens were given power to make arrests by act of April 21, 1915.
  • 1917 - Electric lights first installed on Commission hatcheries. New motor truce purchased by the Erie Hatchery.
  • 1919 - Act of July 8 (effective that date) required that nonresidents buy a $5 fishing license. Only 50 were sold that year.
  • 1921 - Act of May 16, 1921, P.L. 559, known as the "Resident Fish License Law," was passed.
  • 1921 - Bradford County Warden William E. Shoemaker shot on August 25, while apprehending two violators. Shoemaker died from the gunshot wound on September 22, 1921. He was inducted into the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, D.C. on May 13, 1999 (more about Shoemaker).
  • 1922 - The first resident fishing licenses were established. Cost: $1. For the first time the Commission became self-supporting; a total of $207,425.53 was the first year's income for licenses sold to all citizens over 21 years of age.
Year Cost
1922 $ 1.00
1928    1.50
1948    2.00
1954    2.50
1957    3.25
1964    5.00
1974    7.50
1979    9.00
1983  12.00
1996  16.25
2005 21.00
2015 20.00
2016 21.00
Complete History of License Sales and Fees
  • 1923 - Legislature reduced fishing license age limit to 18.
  • 1923 - The first license button issued January 1, 1923 (more about buttons).
  • 1924 - Stream survey started to classify waters with regard to area, depth, fish species, aquatic life and general conditions.
  • During 1924 to 1926 the fishing license age limit was reduced to 16 years of age.
  • 1925 - Act 1925-263 established the Board of Fish Commissioners.
  • 1925 - Creel limits set at: trout - 25; bass - 10; walleye - 10; pickerel - 15; and muskellunge - 3.
Year Limit
1925 25
1933 20
1937 15
1938 10
1952 8
2000 5
  • 1925 - A site was purchased in Bedford County to be known as the Reynoldsdale Hatchery.
  • 1926 - Nonresident fishing license fees were made reciprocal but in no instance less than $2.50.
  • 1927 - A new license button was made with a device on the back for carrying the license, together with an approved pin.
  • 1928 - August 1: Lake Wallenpaupack opened to public fishing. Bureau of Research established. Commission stocked the lake created by the Conowingo Dam.
  • 1928 - Resident fishing license fee increased to $1.50 (see table listed under 1922 for summary of resident license fee changes).
  • 1929 - The Tionesta State Fish Hatchery was completed.
  • 1930 - Most severe drought ever experienced during summer, many tributary streams dried entirely.
  • 1931 - The Commission stopped sending out fish on application; all fish now stocked by Commission personnel.
  • 1931 - The first issue of Pennsylvania Angler was published. The subscription price was 50 cents per year.
  • 1931 - Act of May 28, effective July 1, required a license for motorboats operated on inland waters. Fees set at $1 per cylinder for internal combustion motors and $2 for electric motors. Enforcement of law placed with Fish Commission.
Year Cost per Year
1931 $2 for electric power motorboats $1 per cylinder for internal combustion motorboats    
1963   $4 for motorboats less than 16 feet in length $6 for motorboats 16 feet or over in length  
1991 $5 per year for unpowered boats $10 for motorboats less than 16 feet in length $15 for motorboats greater than 16 and less than 20 feet in length $20 for motorboats 20 feet or longer in length
2005 $9 per year for unpowered boats $13 for motorboats less than 16 feet in length $19.50 for motorboats greater than 16 and less than 20 feet in length $26 for motorboats 20 feet or longer in length
  • 1932 - Safe Harbor Water Power Corporation created Lake Clarke with the Safe Harbor Dam. September: land purchased for Huntsdale Hatchery.
  • 1932 - For the first time, the Commission distributed more than 1 million legal-sized trout.
  • 1932 - The first regulations for motorboat operation were published by the Board of Fish Commissioners.
  • 1933 - Creel limit of trout reduced to 20, previously was set at 25 in 1925 (see table listed under 1925 for summary of creel limits). Act 275 amended Act 21 to specify procedures and language for license application, establishing outside issuing agents and special licenses for dealers.
  • 1934 - Fisherman's Paradise, Centre County, was created. The number of visitors in the first year totaled 2, 952.
  • 1934 - Regulation established the basic boating "100-foot rule."
  • 1935 - The first tourist license (three days - fee $1.50) became available for nonresidents. Same bill also provided a 12-year age limit for nonresidents.
  • 1936 - Flood waters washed away a great number of trout and destroyed many rearing pools. Fishermen still able to enjoy fairly successful trout and bass fishing.
  • 1937 - House bill no. 6 made Sunday fishing lawful.
  • 1937 - Creel limit for trout reduced to 15, previously set at 20 in 1933 (see table listed under 1925 for summary of creel limits).
  • 1938 - Creel limit for trout reduced to 10, previously set at 15 in 1937 (see table listed under 1925 for summary of creel limits).
  • 1938 - The Commission produced its own Brown Trout and Rainbow Trout eggs for the first time.
  • 1939 - Senate bill 160, effective September 1, permitted the purchase of land and waters by the Fish Commission
  • 1940 - Yellow Perch were raised to fingerling size for the first time.
  • 1940 - A law prohibiting the sale of fish bait or bait fish taken from inland waters became effective October 1.
  • 1941 - Pennsylvania regulation prohibited trolling from a motorboat.
  • 1942 - Blue pike catch in Lake Erie up 400 percent over 1941.
  • 1942 - Regulation added that prohibited the operation of a motorboat while intoxicated.
  • 1943 - Free fishing licenses for military personnel were provided (Act No. 145).
  • 1944 - Commission purchased Trexler Fish Hatchery in Allentown.
  • 1944 - Trolling regulation amended to permit trolling from motorboats on all Commonwealth rivers.
  • 1945 - Legal size of Muskellunge increased from 22 to 24 inches.
  • 1946 - Fisheries management program began with mobile biological laboratory.
  • 1947 - Act 81 provided free fishing licenses for certain disabled veterans.
  • 1947 - The Commission's stream management program began.
  • 1947 - Pennsylvania boating regulations rewritten to conform with the Federal Motorboat Act of 1940.
  • 1949 - Act 1949-180 changed the name of the Commission to the Pennsylvania Fish Commission and described its powers and duties. The act repealed Act 263 from 1925, which had established the Board of Fish Commissioners.
  • 1949 - The Commission appointed its first Executive Director, Charles A. French, on April 25. Previously, Commission operations were headed by the Commissioner of Fisheries, which was established along with the Commission in 1866 (more about Executive Directors).
  • 1949 - On Wednesday, April 13th, Governor James H. Duff signed into law Act 65, which prohibits fishing of any kind in all waters of the Commonwealth, between March 14 and 5:00 a.m., April 15 in any year, except in rivers, ponds and lakes not stocked with trout by the Commission. The new law prohibits fishing in trout streams which are stocked by the state for a month prior to the opening of the legal season on trout (more about the history of trout opening day).
  • 1950 - Fisherman's Paradise set new record attendance for one year: 34,796.
  • 1951 - Fish were placed in the Schuylkill River for the first time in a decade after a cleanup campaign by the Department of Forest and Waters.
  • 1951 - Act No. 68 directed the Fish Commission to make a study of the migratory habits of fish, particularly shad.
  • 1951 - Legal size of pickerel increased from 12 inches to 15 inches.
  • 1951 - The Commission acquired the Benner Spring Research Station property.
  • 1952 - Creel limit for trout reduced to 8, previously set at 10 in 1938 (see table listed under 1925 for summary of creel limits). Size limit removed on crappies.
  • 1953 - Virgin Run Lake formally dedicated July 11.
  • 1953 - First federal aid project of the Commission under the Dingell-Johnson Act and the first lake built from start to finish by the Commission.
  • 1953 - Pymatuning Lake first stocked with muskellunge. Act 54 established a 10-horsepower limit on Lake Canadohta, Crawford County.
  • 1954 - Fishing license fee increased from $2 to $2.50 (see table listed under 1922 for summary of resident license fee changes). Size and creel limits removed on panfish and food fishes.
  • 1955 - Ground broken for construction of Lake Somerset on August 17. Act 205 established a 7 -horsepower limit on Quaker Lake, Susquehanna County.
  • 1956 - Taking carp with long bow and arrow legalized. Commission established uniform fly-fishing-only regulations for all projects. Pellet feeding trout initiated at hatcheries.
  • 1957 - Trout season extended to October 31 in selected lakes.
  • 1957 - Act 330 increased fishing licenses to $3.25 with $1 now earmarked for acquisition and development (see table listed under 1922 for summary of resident license fee changes). Act 155 gave Commission right to accept donations. Act 121 gave wardens right to charge persons with littering.
  • 1957 - Benner Springs Research Station began full operation.
  • 1957 - Rules of the road regulation amended to prohibit water skiing within the provisions of the 100-foot rule.
  • 1958 - First fish-for-fun area established on Left Branch of Young Women's Creek in Clinton County. Bell and Holmes hired to make Susquehanna Fishway Study. Kokanee salmon eggs procured from Montana, hatched at Pleasant Mount and stocked experimentally as fry and fingerling in eight lakes.
  • 1958 - Lycoming County Warden Raymond Schroll loses his life attempting to rescue his partner after their boat capsizes in the rain-swollen Susquehanna River in Williamsport. He was inducted into the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, D.C. on May 15, 2000 (more about Schroll).
  • 1959 - The research vessel Perca was launched at Lake Erie.
  • 1959 - Act No. 673, the Fish Law of 1959, was signed by Governor David L. Lawrence on December 15, 1959. It eliminated the license button; permitted aliens to purchase a nonresident license; made nonresident fishing license fee a flat $7.50 (formerly it was reciprocal); and established the opening day of trout season as the 1st Saturday after April 11 (more about the history of trout opening day). The Act repealed the Fish Law of 1949 (Act 1949-180).
  • 1959 - First "wired stocking area" installed on South Branch of Kinzua Creek, McKean County.
  • 1960 - The opening day of trout set as the first Saturday after April 11, under provision of Act No. 673, Fish Law of 1959 (more about the history of trout opening day).
  • 1960 - Aliens permitted to purchase fishing license for $7.50.
  • 1961 - More than 116,280 fish were killed in the Susquehanna River during October. The Commission accepted a $45,000 voluntary contribution from the Glen Alden Mining Corporation - the largest settlement to date ever to be made in the United States for fish killed by pollution.
  • 1961 - The largest shad migration of modern times was recorded in the Delaware River.
  • 1961 - Belmont Lake, in Wayne County, opened June 17.
  • 1961 - Act No. 474 eliminated the metal motorboat license tags.
  • 1962 - Federal-state cooperative trout-stocking program became effective. Fisherman's Paradise opened April 14 on a "fish-for-fun" basis.
  • 1963 - Last year that nonresident trout stamps were required. Pymatuning Compact amended, raising the horsepower limit to 10 and removing the prohibition on motorboat operation by persons under 16. Act 111 established a six-horsepower limit on Sugar Lake, Crawford County.
  • 1963 - Act 400 approved the numbering system for boats - effective February 1, 1964.  Boat registration fees set at $4 per year for motorboats less than 16 feet in length and $6 per year for larger motorboats (see table listed under 1931 for summary of boat registration fees).
  • 1964 - Resident fishing license fee increased to $5 (see table listed under 1922 for summary of resident license fee changes).
  • 1966 - The 100th Anniversary of the Pennsylvania Fish Commission was observed.
  • 1966 - 25,000 coho salmon stocked in Harvey's Lake. Albino brook trout stocked for the first time. Palomino trout stocked for the first time.
  • 1967 - Act 227 requires the display of a capacity plate on most boats, the act was signed into law August 10, 1967.
  • 1968 - Oswayo Hatchery, Potter County, was constructed.
  • 1968 - The first fall run of Coho "Jack" Salmon, from fingerlings planted in the spring, return to Erie's tributary streams.
  • 1969 - April 12 opening day of trout season starts at 8:00 a.m., prior opening days had a 5:00 a.m. start time. Change is made after complaints from landowners about anglers overnight camping (more about the history of trout opening day).
  • 1969 - Senate bill 10-Liquid Fuels Tax bill signed by Governor Shafer. Commission received Amur pike eggs from Soviet Union.
  • 1970 - The Brook Trout was named the official state fish, March 9, 1970, Act 61.
  • 1970 - Construction begins on Big Spring Hatchery, Cumberland County.
  • 1971 - Chinook Salmon smolts released in Lake Erie.
  • 1972 - The Commission named 75 streams in the "Wilderness Trout Program."
  • 1972 - During Hurricane Agnes, Fish Commission personnel, using patrol boats, aided stricken residents throughout Pennsylvania and received special citations from Governor Milton J. Shapp.
  • 1974 - Residents fishing license fee increased to $7.50 (see table listed under 1922 for summary of resident license fee changes).
  • 1974 - Bog turtle protected by HB 1248.
  • 1974 - New littering law was signed by Governor Shapp on March 22.
  • 1974 - The use of electric motors authorized on all Commission lakes.
  • 1974 - HB 2538 gave Commission jurisdiction over reptiles, amphibians and aquatic organisms.
  • 1975 – First strike by Commonwealth employees. Record number of miles of trout waters stocked: 5,042.8. Trout season extended to October 31 on all "approved trout waters" (stocked trout waters) for the first time.
  • 1976 – The Commission began trout stream inventory.
  • 1976 - World record Amur Pike (caught by hook and line) was taken from Glendale Lake, Cambria County (view state records).
  • 1976 – The Commission adopted new regulations for organized snake hunts.
  • 1979 – Fishing license fees increased (see table listed under 1922 for summary of resident license fee changes) — $9 resident; $14 nonresident; $9 seven-day tourist; $10 lifetime (residents 65 years and older). Dedication of fish ladder on Fairmont Dam, Schuylkill river, Philadelphia Dam, Schuylkill River, Philadelphia.
  • 1980 – The Fish and Boat Code of 1980 (Act 175) codified fishing and boating laws. Limited police powers were given to Commission's waterways conservation officers.
  • 1980 – The first striped bass tournament was held at Raystown Lake in Huntingdon County.
  • 1980 – The first issue of the PLAY newsletter was published.
  • 1981 – The Commission adopts Operation FUTURE. Landlocked salmon stocked in Harvey's Lake, Luzerne County.
  • 1983 – Fishing license fees increased — $12 resident; $20 nonresident; $15 seven-day tourist (see table listed under 1922 for summary of resident license fee changes).
  • 1984 – Act 1984-16 changed the name of "waterways patrolman" to "waterways conservation officer." Act also enacted one of first boating under the influence (BUI) implied consent laws in United States
  • 1984 – American Shad were given gamefish status by the Fish Commission. Creel limit set at six per day.
  • 1984 – First female waterways conservation officer hired.
  • 1984 – First Fish-for-Free Day in Pennsylvania on September 22. The original scheduled date of June 2 had to be canceled because the necessary legislative action was not completed in time.
  • 1984 – The first issue of Boat Pennsylvania was published.
  • 1985 – Commission's Cooperative Nursery Program lists 188 fish culture facilities.
  • 1986 – A 33-inch minimum size limit established for striped bass in the Delaware River.
  • 1987 – "Resource First" was adopted as the Commission’s motto.
  • 1987 – The Commission held the first "Day on a River" a Fort Hunter Park in Dauphin County.
  • 1991 – The Commission introduces $5 Trout/Salmon Permit (Stamp), for the 1991 license year.
  • 1991 – Under Act 1991-39, the Pennsylvania Fish Commission becomes the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission.
  • 1991 – Boat registration fees increased for first time since 1963, Act 1991-39 (see table listed under 1931 for summary of boat registration fees).
  • 1995 – Lake Erie Permit (Act 79, signed into law October 5, 1994) required for Lake Erie, Presque Isle Bay, and their tributaries for the 1995 license year.  The $3.00 permit (stamp) created to provide recompense for holders of commercial fishing licenses, who are now prohibited from using gill nets.  Stamp discontinued after 1998 license year after adequate funds have been raised for the recompense program.
  • 1996 – Fishing license fees increase for first time since 1983 — $16.25 resident; $34.25 nonresident; $14.25 three-day tourist; $29.25 seven-day tourist (see table listed under 1922 for summary of resident license fee changes).  Issuing agent fee increased from $.50 to $.75 per license sold.
  • 1996 – The Commission establishes a presence on the World Wide Web in May, website URL is
  • 1998Boat Titling was first required in Pennsylvania for certain boats.
  • 1999 – Warden William E. Shoemaker inducted into the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, D.C. on May 13 (more about Shoemaker).
  • 2000 – Effective January 1, operators of personal watercraft are required to complete a safe boating course or pass an equivalency examination.
  • 2000 – Daily creel limit for trout reduced from 8 to 5. The limit was last changed in 1952 (see table listed under 1925 for summary of creel limits). 
  • 2000 – Year-round open bass season begins. Catch and release and limited harvest in effect for much of the traditional closed season.
  • 2000 – Warden Raymond Leroy Schroll Jr. inducted into the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, D.C. on May 15 (more about Schroll).
  • 2000 – June 5, the Commission occupies its new headquarters at 1601 Elmerton Avenue, Harrisburg. Groundbreaking ceremonies - May 12, 1999. Building dedication - July 22, 2000.
  • 2001 – Online (Internet) sales of fishing licenses begin in February, with instant licenses (printed on a home printer) becoming available in April. Other products (publication, patches, etc.) are sold online at The Outdoor Shop.
  • 2001 – The sale of unpowered boat launch permits began in December.
  • 2003 – Senate Bill 463, passed by the General Assembly in November 2002 and signed into law as Act 199 of 2002 by Governor Mark Schweiker on December 9, 2002, makes it mandatory for all persons born on or after January 1, 1982 to possess a certificate of boating safety education when operating a motorboat with a motor of more than 25 horsepower. Effective February 7, 2003.
  • 2004 – Wild Brook Trout Enhancement regulations established, effective January 1. Initially only 1 area added - the Upper Kettle Creek Basin (main stem and all tributaries from Long Run upstream, including Long Run). Total length of 28.3 miles.
  • 2004 – Online renewals for existing boat registrations begin February 28, sold through The Outdoor Shop. A temporary Internet registration, valid for 30 days, can be printed; the traditional registration materials are mailed to the registrant’s home.
  • 2005 – Act 159 of 2004 (House Bill 2155) establishes new fishing license fees, signed into law November 30, 2004, new fees go into effect January 1, 2005. Fees last increased in 1996, trout/salmon permit increased for the 1st time since its inception in 1991, Lake Erie permit and combination trout-salmon/Lake Erie permit created — resident - $21; nonresident - $51; senior resident annual - $10; senior resident lifetime - $50; three-day tourist - $25; seven-day tourist - $33; one-day resident (cannot be used in April) - $10; trout/salmon stamp - $8; Lake Erie permit - $8; combination trout-salmon/Lake Erie permit - $14. Issuing agent fee increased from $0.75 to $1 per license sold.  Stamp/permit fee also increased to $1 for each sold, previously the issuing fee for a stamp was $0.50 (see table listed under 1922 for summary of resident license fee changes).
  • 2005 – Act 159 of 2004 (House Bill 2155) establishes new boat registration fees, signed into law November 30, 2004, new fees go into effect January 1, 2005. Fees last increased in 1991. Prices for 2 year registrations: unpowered $18; motorboats less than 16 feet - $26; motorboats 16 feet and less than 20 feet - $39; motorboats 20 feet and longer - $52 (see table listed under 1931 for summary of boat registration fees).
  • 2005 – One-day tourist and National Guard & Armed Forces Reserve licenses established, made available in September. The 1-day license includes specialty fishing permits (trout/salmon stamps and Lake Erie permits), it is not valid during the month of April.
  • 2006 – The first fishing license was sold in December (for 2007 license year) using the Commission's new point-of-sale system, Pennsylvania Automated Licensing System (PALS), at the Commission's headquarters in Harrisburg. Additional agents will be phased in over the course of the 2007 license year.
  • 2007 – Regional opening day of trout season, two weeks before statewide trout season for southeastern Pennsylvania counties, was established (trout season facts).
  • 2010 – Commission Twitter account established on February 24.
  • 2012 – Commission Facebook page established on June 21.
  • 2012 – A Pennsylvania historical marker was unveiled on July 17, honoring former Commission Executive Director Ralph W. Abele (1921-1990) in a dedication ceremony at PFBC headquarters, 1601 Elmerton Avenue, Harrisburg (PA Angler & Boater magazine article).
  • 2012 – Act 66 (Senate Bill 1049) is signed on June 22, 2012. This legislative act provides the ability for the Commission to establish multi-year and group fishing licenses, along with promotional discounts for marketing purposes.
  • 2013 – As a result of Act 66, 3-year and 5-year fishing licenses are sold for the first time in Pennsylvania (available December 1, 2012).
  • 2013 – The first Mentored Youth Trout Day was held Saturday, March 23, 8 a.m. - 7:30 p.m., one week before the regional opening day of trout season. Established as a pilot program by temporary change of fishing regulations under the authority of 58 Pa. Code §65.25, individuals were permitted to fish at 12 waters in southeastern PA. Youth and required accompanying licensed mentor were permitted to keep 2 legal-size trout each.
  • 2014 – In March, a Pennsylvania fishing license button was reintroduced. The optional button sold for $5. The color of the button was determined by a public online vote. Blue was selected. The button is similar to ones offered by PFBC in the 1930s, 1940s, 1950s, and 1974 and 1975. A paper license is still required to be carried by anglers, the button can be displayed in lieu of displaying the paper license.
  • 2014 – Based on the success of the 2013 pilot, the Mentored Youth Fishing Program was expanded statewide. A mentored youth fishing day was held two weeks prior to both the statewide and regional trout opening days in 2014.
  • 2014 – A Voluntary Youth Fishing License was established and sold in 2014, cost $1 (plus agent fee and surcharge). Revenues generated from sales will be dedicated to programs that increase youth fishing participation. For each license purchased, PFBC receives $5 back in funding as a federal reimbursement.
  • 2015 – Fishing License prices are reduced $1 for Resident ($20), Senior Resident ($9) and Non-resident ($50) licenses. First price reduction in PFBC history. (see table listed under 1922 for summary of resident license fee changes).
  • 2015 – The FishBoatPA app was released in March as the first mobile app from the Commission. Features include trout stocking schedules, locations of stocked trout waters and boat access areas, fish identification, issuing agent listing, rules and regulations, and a "my trophies" section for photos of angler catches. The app is available for free on both the Google Play Store and Apple App Store.
  • 2016 – The Keystone Select Stocked Trout Waters program was introduced. Eight waters receive 14-20 inch trout (3,200 total). These stocked waters are regulated under Delayed Harvest Artificial Lures Only (DHALO) regulations. One water chosen in each Commissioner district.
  • 2016 – Fishing License prices returned to pre-2015 prices (when three were reduced $1): Resident ($21), Senior Resident ($10) and Non-resident ($51). (see table listed under 1922 for summary of resident license fee changes).
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History of the Management of Trout Fisheries in Pennsylvania
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