Felt Regulations


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States with felt bans
Alaska
Maryland
Missouri
Nebraska
Rhode Island
South Dakota
Vermont

States which have considered bans
Idaho
Maine
Montana
New Mexico
New York City
Oregon

Status of Felt Restrictions in the United States

Since 2009 there has been an increasing move toward restricting the use of felt soled waders and wading boots. We have created this page to provide a single source of information about all of the felt bans in the USA.

There are two basic approaches to creating these restrictions. In some states the bans are created through legislative action. That is, their legislatures have debated and passed a law that has been signed by the Governor. Other bans are created by administrative action. These bans are implemented by the action of a Fish & Game Commission, by Agency rule making authority or through other administrative action. Understanding the process through which new regulations are developed is important for anyone who wishes to have a voice in the process.

The following tables offer a brief overview of the status of felt restrictions in the US. This page is updated with any significant changes in an attempt to provide a comprehensive listing of felt restrictions. If you have information about any felt restriction proposals that are not included please contact us with information.

This page is current! We try to track every felt regulation in the USA and we update this page whenever there is new information available.

States with a felt ban

State or Jurisdiction Alaska
Proposal Statewide ban on use of felt
Proposal Status Adopted by unanimous vote 3/19/2010
Implementation Date January 1, 2012
Type of regulation Administrative - State Fisheries Commission
Bill Number N/A
Additional information
Last Updated 2-25-2011

State or Jurisdiction Maryland
Proposal Status Ban implemented March 21, 2011
Proposal Bans use of felt in all Maryland waters
Implementation Date 3-21-2011
Type of regulation Administrative
Bill Number
Additional information
Last Update 2-25-2011

State or Jurisdiction Missouri
Proposal Status Ban Approved subject to final implementation
Proposal Ban use of felt
Implementation Date 3-1-2012
Type of regulation Administrative Rule
Bill Number N/A
Additional information The Missouri Conservation Commission has approved a regulation change banning the use of porous-soled waders or footwear incorporating or having attached a porous sole of felted, matted, or woven fibrous material when fishing in trout parks and other specific trout waters. Pending public comment through the Secretary of State’s office, the new regulation will go into effect March 1, 2012, the opening day of catch-and-keep fishing at Missouri’s four trout parks
Last Update 10-20--2011

State or Jurisdiction Nebraska
Proposal Statewide ban on the use of felt
Proposal Status Effective January 1, 2013 as published in 2013 Fishing Regulations
Implementation Date January 1, 2013
Type of regulation Administrative
Bill Number N/A
Additional information 2013-2014 Fishing Regulations
Last Updated 3-21-2013

State or Jurisdiction Rhode Island
Proposal Status Statewide ban in place
Proposal It is prohibited that any person use foot gear with external felt soles in any state waters, inclusive of freshwater, tidal, or marine. This shall include any waters shared with adjacent states in which any Rhode Island Fishing Regulations apply.
Implementation Date January 1, 2012
Type of regulation Administrative - Regulation Change
Bill Number
Additional information 2012/2013 fishing regulations Regulation 1.17, page 9
Last Update 12/28/2011

State or Jurisdiction South Dakota
Proposal Status Ban implemented on 12-15-2013
Proposal Statewide ban on felt
Implementation Date 12-15-2013
Type of regulation Administrative
Bill Number N/A
Additional information South Dakota Administrative Rule 41:07:01:18 Felt sole footwear prohibited. No external felt sole footwear including boots and waders may be used in the waters of the state, except that a state or federal employee or emergency personnel, including fire, law enforcement, and emergency medical technician personnel, may use external felt sole footwear in the discharge of official duties. Source: Law Implemented: SDCL 41-2-18(1)(5) General Authority: SDCL 41-2-18(1)(5) News Article
Last Updated 1-3-2014

State or Jurisdiction Vermont 1
Proposal Status Passed and signed into law on 5/12/2010
Proposal Unlawful to use external felt-soled boots or external felt-soled waders
Implementation Date April 1, 2011
Type of regulation Legislative
Bill Number H. 488
Additional information Bill Text and Status
Last Update 2-25-2011

State or Jurisdiction Vermont 2
Proposal Status Died in Committee
Proposal Requires stores to educate about felt ban
Implementation Date TBD
Type of regulation Legislative
Bill Number H. 210
Additional information Bill Status Bill Text
Last Update 3-25-2011

State or Jurisdiction Vermont 3
Proposal Status Died in Committee
Proposal Changes implementation of felt ban to 4/1/2012 and mandates state education efforts
Implementation Date TBD
Type of regulation Legislative
Bill Number H. 211
Additional information Bill Text
Last Update 3-25-2011



States that considered a felt ban - No current restrictions

State or Jurisdiction Idaho
Proposal Status Resolution Adopted 4-7-2011
Resolution Idaho congratulates those fishing tackle manufacturers that offer alternatives to felt soles, for their foresight and efforts to offer products that reduce the threat and potential transfer of aquatic nuisance species. Other manufacturers, both domestic and foreign, are encouraged to engineer, develop, manufacture and sell similar products that reduce and/or help prevent the spread of aquatic nuisance species.
Implementation Date Immediate
Type of regulation Legislative
Bill Number Senate Concurrent Resolution 101
Additional information Bill Status Bill Text
Last Updated 4-30-2011

State or Jurisdiction Maine
Proposal Status Signed into law 4-25-2011
Proposal Law states: The Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife in consultation with the Department of Environmental Protection shall examine issues related to the control of invasive aquatic species, including but not limited to the use of felt-soled waders and the spread of invasive aquatic species, and report to the Joint Standing Committee on Inland Fisheries and Wildlife by January 15, 2012. The report may include any recommendations concerning legislation.
Implementation Date
Type of regulation Legislative
Bill Number HP 205, LD252
Additional information Bill Text
Last Update 4-30-2011

State or Jurisdiction Montana
Proposal Status Did not pass from Committee - 2/24/2011
Proposal Ban on sale and use of felt
Implementation Date October 1, 2012
Type of regulation Legislative
Bill Number SB230
Additional information
Last Update 2-25-2011

State or Jurisdiction New Mexico
Proposal Status Tabled by Commission - December 2009
Proposal Ban on use of felt
Implementation Date N/A
Type of regulation Administrative
Bill Number
Additional information Fish & Game agency requested approval from commission who tabled request. Press Release
Last Update 2-25-2011

State or Jurisdiction New York City
Proposal Status Active - agency has authority to implement Ban if desired
Proposal Rubber bottomed boots only in City owned waters
Implementation Date TBD
Type of regulation Administrative
Bill Number
Additional information New York City owns sections of many popular Catskill waters which supply water to the City.
Last Update 2-25-2011

State or Jurisdiction Oregon
Proposal Status Died in committee
Proposal Ban sale and use of felt by 2015
Implementation Date Jan 1, 2015
Type of regulation Legislative
Bill Number 2338
Additional information
Last Update 4-30-2011