California Department of Fish and Wildlife

Automated License Data System

General Questions and Answers

What is the Automated License Data System (ALDS)?

ALDS is an automated licensing data system that electronically links to a central database. ALDS replaced the manual paper-based licensing system used by CDFW and license agents.

Why make the change?

For many years the public has requested a streamlined more efficient and simpler licensing system. ALDS improves customer service, business processes and governmental efficiencies. The ALDS:

  • Improves customer service to the public by providing faster easier license purchases;
  • Enables license agents to sell all sport fishing and hunting licenses and related items;
  • Provides license sales 24-hours a day seven days a week by telephone or on the Internet;
  • Streamlines the license sales and accounting process by eliminating license inventory and sales reporting requirements (all license sales revenue are electronically transferred to CDFW at predetermined dates and times);
  • Provides timely and accurate accounting of CDFW revenues and speeds the collection of license revenues and
  • Provides license buyer data for resource management purposes and the opportunities to make better decisions based on better data.

What will my new license look like?

All licenses, permits, validations, tags and other entitlements will print from the IPOS on generic waterproof, tear-resistant paper at the time of purchase. Licenses can fold to credit card size or smaller. Customers making purchases via the Internet will be able to print a temporary license from home until they receive their annual license by mail.

How will the Department pay for ALDS?

CDFW will redirect the savings and increased revenues and reimbursements created by ALDS to fund the design, development, implementation and operation over a multi-year period. Regulations authorize a three percent license buyer surcharge which is applied to each item. The surcharge is capped at $7.50 per item. The surcharge will help operate and maintain the new automated system.

How does ALDS impact me?

The two main constituent groups most affected by ALDS are license buyers and license agents (independent businesses that sell licenses on behalf of CDFW, which include bait shops, sporting goods stores, etc.).

  • License Buyers: Under ALDS the actual sales process is easier and quicker. Barriers such as license agents running out of inventory or not carrying the item the customer needs is eliminated. In addition, more services and special items that were previously only available from a CDFW license sales office (i.e., drawing entries, bear and deer tags) are available at license agents. Also, licenses are available, 7-days a week 24-hours a day, using the Internet and eventually the telephone. ALDS provides real time data to help CDFW better understand our customers and their needs, thus enabling us to develop and deliver products and services that benefit our customers.
  • License Agents: License agents benefit from ALDS by providing a simpler licensing process that decreases the time it takes to manage and maintain license inventory and complete many of the manual sales and reporting processes. In addition, there is a reduced risk of penalties and interest assessment experienced with the prior system. License agents will never run out of inventory and can sell all our recreational items which may increase the number of potential customers to their businesses.

Where can I get more information?

Write to CDFW, License and Revenue Branch, 1740 N. Market Blvd., Sacramento, CA, 95834, or call Mr. Brent George at (916) 928-6882.