Pink Envelope Change — Digital Antlerless Deer License Applications

A proposed change in Harrisburg is advocating for substituting the current system of paper applications being mailed to county treasurers for antlerless deer licenses in Pennsylvania, for a digital one.

Tradition versus technology. The proposed change comes entirely too fast for some, and sluggish at best for others.

While it’s too soon for when hunting licenses go on sale in the middle of June this year, next year could look different with no pink envelopes in hunter’s mailboxes.

Sen. Dan Laughlin of Erie and chair of the Senate Game and Fisheries Committee, has proposed Senate Bill 431.

If passed, the bill will allow the ability to sell antlerless deer licenses at authorized issuing agents like Kinsey’s Outdoors.

Seems like a simple sign of the times, right?

Mobile banking and job applications from your smartphone are normal occurrences in 2021.

Every day citizens of the state are brought into technological advances regardless of whether they are ready for them or not.

If you ask around, you could probably find an equal number of hunters you know are for, and against it.

Some appreciate the convenience, while others young and old like the tradition of sitting down to fill out the application and wait for the pink envelope to return in the mail.

The proposed bill would rather see hunters make their way to their local license issuing agent to make those purchases, as they can do now with their regular hunting license.

The argument is for convenience to the hunter and extra foot traffic for the store.

Issuing agents like Kinsey’s Outdoors offer in-store coupons for license purchases and enjoy the chance to have a conversation with local hunters about the upcoming season. An opportunity to answer any questions and help hunters get what they need for success in the field.

Other states have online purchasing systems for their antlerless tags, why not Pennsylvania?

As one of the largest populations of hunters, it’s been argued by the PA County Treasurer Association citing competition as the largest drawback for the proposed change.

With as fast as some units sell out, it could create less opportunity for some hunters.

Some in the association feel that issuing agents and the system itself, won’t be able to handle the demand without crashing the system.

The association also argues that in-person staff can answer record-keeping questions and resolve problems created in the computer database.

At this point, county treasurer offices receive one dollar for every application they process. Funds they cite are not put on the Pennsylvania taxpayer.

What does this mean for you?

More than likely nothing for this year as the proposed change is too close to the start of selling licenses on June 14th.

Hunters are urged to contact their state representative and let them know whether they favor the change for not.

The coming years could certainly adjust to technology’s ability to provide a better version of a service. When discussing the best way to do things, it’s subjective to say, especially in a state where hunting traditions are as deep as they are in Pennsylvania.

For more information on antlerless deer licenses and applications – visit the Pennsylvania Game Commissions website here.

To shop our full line of hunting, archery, and outdoor gear and accessories – visit us online at, or in person at 1658 Steel Way Drive, Mount Joy, PA 17552.

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