back arrow iconBack to News

August 3, 2023

America’s Govs. Celebrate States’ Support for Firearm Industry’s National Shooting Sports Month®

By Joe Bartozzi

The start of August means, once again, a month-long celebration of hunting, target and recreational sport shooting and all-things firearms are in full swing as National Shooting Sports Month® kicks off for 2023.

This year has the potential to be one of the most active National Shooting Sports Month celebrations yet. Not only have several million Americans joined the ranks of the gun-owning community by purchasing a firearm for the first time recently, but the pace of gun buying by all Americans from all corners and backgrounds has continued at a breakneck speed. It’s been four continuous years of over 1 million FBI National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) verifications.

Developed by NSSF, National Shooting Sports Month encourages gun owners and hunters to visit a local shooting range with their handgun, rifle or shotgun to enjoy the shooting sports, which boasts more than 63 million adult and youth participants. All are encouraged to invite a guest with them to introduce them to responsible firearm ownership.

The great news for all gun owners looking to take advantage of the numerous opportunities to practice and sharpen up their firearm skills during National Shooting Sports Month is they have supportive leadership all the way at the top in several states. Several of America’s governors are staunch firearm industry and Second Amendment supporters and are participating in National Shooting Sports Month activities themselves. They also have the legislative leadership and accomplishments to back up their track records of supporting the traditions and heritage that go along with it.

Governors Join the Celebration

Several of America’s governors kicked off the month by signing official state proclamations showing their support for National Shooting Sports Month and recognizing the role the firearm and ammunition industry fulfills within their respective states. These governors highlighted the contributions of job creation, economic impact and conservation efforts through Pittman-Robertson excise tax payments, paid by firearm and ammunition manufacturers. So far, at least 19 governors have signed proclamations in their states from across the country.


In the Southeast, several governors have made their support for National Shooting Sports Month official. Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin signed a proclamation, noting in 2022, shooting sports enthusiasts contributed more than $20 million to wildlife and conservation efforts through their support of Pittman-Robertson firearm industry excise taxes. Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp signed a proclamation once again, highlighting his state’s $2.42 billion hunting and shooting sports economy that employs nearly 11,000 Georgians. South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster signed a proclamation too for the Palmetto state, lauding his state’s 6,471 firearm industry jobs which account for an economic impact of nearly $1.2 billion.

Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves, who’s running for re-election this year, celebrated the 4,865 direct jobs related to hunting, recreational shooting sports and the firearm industry that all call Mississippi home. The indirect impact those jobs have on the state’s economy is far greater.

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey hailed the firearm and ammunition industry for contributing as much as $875.75 million to the state’s economy last year, supported by nearly 5,400 jobs.

West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice signed a proclamation too, celebrating the Mountaineer State’s rich traditions of hunting, shooting sports and support for the Second Amendment.

Rocky Mountain West

Several governors in the Rocky Mountain region offered their official praise for National Shooting Sports Month. Idaho Gov. Brad Little signed a proclamation, highlighting that hunting and shooting sports activities contributed $2.3 billion to the state’s economy in 2022, while Colorado Gov. Jared Polis celebrated the $1.2 billion economic footprint the firearm industry had in the same year.

In Wyoming, Gov. Mark Gordon signed a proclamation celebrating the shooting sports and hunting traditions in the Cowboy state, noting the $600 million economic impact and more than $17 million back to the state in Pittman-Robertson funds for conservation. Gov. Gordon just recently wrapped up celebrating the 7th Annual Magpul Governor’s Match competitive shooting match in Casper, which brought hundreds of competitive shooters to the state to participate. Utah’s Gov. Spencer Cox, Nebraska’s Gov. Jim Pillen and South Dakota’s Gov. Kristi Noem all signed official proclamations celebrating National Shooting Sports Month.

Midwest and Rust Belt

In the Plains, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott signed an National Shooting Sports Month proclamation, praising the firearm industry and all shooting sports participants, noting everything’s bigger in Texas: the firearm industry had an economic impact of more than $6 billion last year. Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly signed a proclamation as well, noting the state is home to more than 2,000 hunting and firearm industry-related jobs that helped contribute more than $503 million to the state’s economy. Not to be out done, Missouri Gov. Mike Parson highlighted the Show Me state’s more than 8,800 industry jobs and an impressive $1.53 billion economic impact. Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds celebrated the more than 2,900 firearm industry jobs in the Hawkeye state, totaling more than $577 million in economic impact.

Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb signed his state’s proclamation celebrating National Shooting Sports Month and praising the industry that includes more than 5,900 jobs with an economic footprint of more than $1.2 billion. Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine lauded his state’s 15,500 industry jobs, $2.5 billion economic footprint and the $23.5 million in Pittman-Robertson funds those shooting sports participants contributed back to the state. Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers signed a proclamation too, celebrating the rich hunting traditions in the Badger state.

Not to be left out, Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy added his signature to an official National Shooting Sports Month proclamation. In Alaska, the governor noted the rich traditions and heritage of hunting and recreational shooting that are passed on to each new generation in the Last Frontier.

More To Come & Get Involved

The National Shooting Sports Month kickoff is impressive with millions of Americans already participating in firearm-related activities from coast to coast. This is just the beginning, too. There’s a full month left for millions of more Americans to join in the fun too, and hopefully grow the gun-owning community even more.

NSSF offers industry members at recreational shooting ranges and target courses a Promotional Toolkit, where businesses can download social media promotions, logos, and guidance for celebrating National Shooting Sports Month. Firearm ranges and retailers can help celebrate recreational shooting and spread the word about mentoring through the +ONE® Movement and spending shared time at the range.

You may also be interested in:

10 Ways Target Shooters Can Enjoy National Shooting Sports Month in August

#RangeChallenge Returns for NSSF’s National Shooting Sports Month

10 Ways Target Shooters Can Enjoy National Shooting Sports Month in August

Share This Article

Tags: +ONE Governors Proclamations National Shooting Sports Month

Categories: BP Item, Featured, Government Relations, Industry News, Ranges, Retailers, Shooting, Top Stories