- Associated Press - Thursday, March 27, 2014

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - Federal officials say wildlife and conservation programs in New Mexico will be get a boost of nearly $21 million.

The funding was announced this week by the U.S. Department of Interior. It comes from excise taxes generated by the sale of sporting firearms, ammunition, archery equipment, fishing equipment and electric outboard boat motors.

The money will be distributed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service through two restoration programs that are aimed at conserving wildlife resources.

Officials say the programs have generated more than $15 billion since their inception and that money has been matched with more than $5 billion from recipient agencies.

Total distributions to the states this year are greater than last year partly because funds that were not released due to the government shutdown are being included.

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