From the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission
-- Arkansas Gov. Mike Beebe has signed legislation that allows retirees of the U.S. armed forces aged 60 and older to buy a Lifetime Combination hunting and fishing License from the Game and Fish Commission for a one-time fee of $35.50.
The license will be available beginning May 20.
"This was an idea that the governor had," according to Rep. Randy Stewart of Kirby, a retired Army lieutenant colonel. "The Yellow Ribbon Task Force has been studying various options for military veterans. The National Guard liked this as a recruiting and retention tool. People who may be thinking about retirement before they have 20 years may stay so that they take advantage of this opportunity."
Chief Master Sgt. Buddy Burns of the Air Force National Guard attended the signing in the governor's office at the Capitol.
"I'm retiring in 10 months, so this means a lot to those of us who are close to retirement," said Burns, a lifelong Arkansas resident.
Arkansas law allows those 65 and older to buy the Lifetime Combination License for $35.50. Lifetime state trout and duck stamps are purchased one time after the age requirement has been met. Anyone may buy the Nonexpiring Lifetime Resident Hunting and Fishing Sportsman's Permit for $1,000.
Lifetime licenses are for Arkansas residents only. They may not be purchased by phone or online. Applications, however, are available under "Licenses and Permits" at www.agfc.com, by calling (800)364-4263 or by visiting any Game and Fish office during regular business hours.