A member of the House wants to bring outdoor recreation permits into the digital age.

House Rep. Dan Saddler (R-Eagle River) introduced House Bill 260 last month.

On Tuesday, Saddler gave a brief presentation to the House Special Committee on Fisheries.

His bill gives permit holders the choice of carrying the traditional paper license or have it stored on their smartphones.

“My hope is with the passage of HB260, we can trade flimsy paper for eternal and reliable digital,” he told the panel. “Smartphones have become an indispensable part of modern life in Alaska, as everywhere in the country.

“They give us inexpensive convenient access to reliable information services. As anyone who has fallen into a stream while landing that big fish-- or sat in a duck blind getting soaked-- paper licenses can be damaged at the worse possible time.”

Fisheries committee chair Louise Stutes says she likes Saddler’s idea. She plans on taking public testimony in a coming hearing.

“I’ve been very gratified at the support I’ve gotten from legislators on both sides of the aisle and from members of the public,” Saddler said. “Some outdoor groups have weighed in. They think it’s a good idea.”

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