WSR 97-24-086

PROPOSED RULES

DEPARTMENT OF

FISH AND WILDLIFE

(Fisheries)

[Filed December 2, 1997, 4:32 p.m.]

Original Notice.

Preproposal statement of inquiry was filed as WSR 97-19-094.

Title of Rule: Commercial fishing rules.

Purpose: Amend Puget Sound shrimp harvest rules.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 75.08.080.

Statute Being Implemented: RCW 75.08.080.

Summary: Modifies gear requirements, areas, minimum shrimp size and minimum landing requirements.

Reasons Supporting Proposal: Promotes fishing opportunities and participation, simplifies regulations, and provides for more orderly fisheries.

Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting: Evan Jacoby, 1111 Washington Street, Olympia, (360) 902-2930; Implementation: Bruce Crawford, 1111 Washington Street, Olympia, (360) 902-2325; and Enforcement: Ron Swatfigure, 1111 Washington Street, Olympia, (360) 902-2927.

Name of Proponent: Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, governmental.

Rule is not necessitated by federal law, federal or state court decision.

Explanation of Rule, its Purpose, and Anticipated Effects: Proposed changes to chapter 220-88A WAC would establish a minimum size for spot shrimp, eliminate a pot mesh size requirement, open a new area for shrimp bean trawling, change the minimum trawl depth in Area 20A, establish a maximum pot size, and modify minimum landing requirements. These changes would help to maximum commercial opportunity, consistent with conservation goals, and increase the yield of the spot shrimp fishery.

Proposal Changes the Following Existing Rules: Chapter 220-88A WAC, a minimum carapace length of 1 and 3/16 inches would be established for spot shrimp. The mesh size requirement for Griffen Bay would be eliminated. A currently closed area between Lummi and Sinclair Islands would be opened to shrimp beam trawling. The minimum trawl depth in the Gulf of Georgia would be reduced from sixty to twenty fathoms. Spot shrimp would not be a legal harvest species for beam trawlers. A maximum shrimp pot perimeter of ten feet and a maximum height of two feet would be established. The Puget Sound shrimp pot fishery minimum landing requirement would be reduced by one half and the beam trawl fishery minimum landing requirement would be eliminated.

A small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW.

Small Business Economic Impact Statement


Puget Sound commercial shrimp rules, chapter 220-88A WAC.

1. Description of the Reporting, Recordkeeping and Other Compliance Requirements of the Proposed Rule: None.

2. Kinds of Professional Services that a Small Business is Likely to Need in Order to Comply with Such Requirements: None.

3. Costs of Compliance for Businesses, Including Costs of Equipment, Supplies, Labor, and Increased Administrative Costs: None.

4. Will Compliance with the Rule Cause Businesses to Lose Sales or Revenue? The proposed rule changes will enhance Puget Sound commercial shrimp fishing opportunity. Benefits will accrue from an increase in areas and depths open for fishing and elimination of an unnecessary mesh size restriction. Establishment of a maximum pot size will help to spread the harvest more evenly among fishers. Two fishers who fished with extra large pots (believed to have been leased) last season may be inconvenienced. Elimination of the beam trawl fishery minimum landing requirement (MLR) and reduction of the pot fishery MLR will make it easier for fishers to maintain eligibility.

5. Cost of Compliance for the Ten Percent of Businesses that are the Largest Businesses Required to Comply with the Proposed Rules Using One or More of the Following as a Basis for Comparing Costs:

a. Cost per employee; n/a

b. Cost per hour of labor; or n/a

c. Cost per one hundred dollars of sales. n/a

6. Steps Taken by the Agency to Reduce the Costs of the Rule on Small Businesses or Reasonable Justification for Not Doing So: No additional costs expected.

7. A Description of How the Agency will Involve Small Businesses in the Development of the Rule: A meeting with an industry advisory board is scheduled.

8. A List of Industries that will be Required to Comply with the Rule: Puget Sound commercial shrimp fishers.

A copy of the statement may be obtained by writing to Evan Jacoby, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Rules Coordinator, 600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501, phone (360) 902-2930, or FAX (360) 902-2944.

Section 201, chapter 403, Laws of 1995, does not apply to this rule adoption. Not hydraulics rules.

Hearing Location: Maple Hall, 108 Commercial Street, La Conner, WA on January 23-24, 1998, at 9:00 a.m.

Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Robin Ayers by January 8, 1998, TDD (360) 902-2295, or (360) 902-2933.

Submit Written Comments to: Evan Jacoby, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Rules Coordinator, 600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501, FAX (360) 902-2940, by January 14, 1998.

Date of Intended Adoption: January 24, 1998.

December 2, 1997

Evan Jacoby

Rules Coordinator

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending Order 94-14, filed 3/17/94, effective 4/17/94)

WAC 220-88A-020 Designation of Puget Sound shrimp pot and Puget Sound shrimp trawl as emerging commercial fisheries. (1) The director designates the Puget Sound shrimp pot fishery as an emerging commercial fishery for which a vessel is required. ((Effective April 16, 1994,)) It is unlawful to fish for or retain shrimp taken for commercial purposes from Puget Sound using any type of shellfish pot gear unless the operator of the gear has an emerging commercial fishery license and a Puget Sound shrimp pot experimental fishery permit issued under the provisions of this chapter. ((Effective April 16, 1994,)) A shrimp pot fishery license or a shrimp pot--Hood Canal fishery license may not be used to fish for shrimp in Puget Sound.

(2) The director designates the Puget Sound shrimp trawl fishery as an emerging commercial fishery for which a vessel is required. ((Effective April 16, 1994,)) It is unlawful to fish for or retain shrimp taken for commercial purposes from Puget Sound using trawl gear unless the operator of the gear has an emerging commercial fishery license and a Puget Sound shrimp trawl experimental fishery permit issued under the provisions of this chapter. ((Effective April 16, 1994,)) A shrimp trawl--Puget Sound license may not be used to fish for shrimp in Puget Sound.

(3) A separate emerging commercial fishery license is required for each experimental fishery permit.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 75.28.740 and 75.30.220. 94-07-092 (Order 94-14), 220-88A-020, filed 3/17/94, effective 4/17/94.]

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending Order 94-14, filed 3/17/94, effective 4/17/94)

WAC 220-88A-030 Emerging commercial fishery--Eligibility for Puget Sound shrimp pot experimental fishery permit. (1) ((A single 1994 Puget Sound shrimp pot experimental fishery permit will be issued to an individual who has demonstrated historical and continuous participation in the Puget Sound shrimp pot fishery by:

(a) Being the owner of a vessel or vessels that held a shellfish pot (excluding crab) license (RCW 75.28.130(2)) during either 1991 or 1992, held this license during 1993, and:

(b) Can document, by means of valid fish receiving tickets, that the vessel or vessels landed at least 7,000 pounds, adjusted weight, of shrimp taken with shellfish pot gear from Puget Sound during the eligibility period of April 16, 1991 through October 15, 1993. For purposes of computing adjusted weight, spot prawns are totaled at two times the weight shown on the fish tickets and other pandalid shrimp are totaled at the weight shown on the fish tickets. No shrimp landed with any other gear, shrimp taken from waters other than Puget Sound, or shrimp taken during any other period of time satisfy this eligibility requirement. For purposes of this subsection and in addition to any other requirement, a valid fish receiving ticket is a fish receiving ticket that has been received by the department on or before November 1, 1993.

(2) No emerging commercial fishery license holder may receive more than one Puget Sound shrimp pot experimental fishery permit. The pounds of shrimp landed from the vessel or vessels may be used to qualify only one experimental fishery permit.

(3))) Puget Sound shrimp pot experimental fishery permits are valid only for the year issued and expire with the emerging commercial fishery license on December 31st of each year.

(((4))) (2) Except as provided for in subsection (((5))) (3) of this section, after December 31, 1994, a Puget Sound shrimp pot experimental fishery permit will only be issued to an individual who held an emerging commercial fishery license and Puget Sound shrimp pot experimental fishery permit the previous year, and who can establish by means of valid fish receiving tickets that a minimum of ((2,000)) 1,000 adjusted pounds of shrimp taken with shellfish pot gear were landed from Puget Sound during the previous year. For purposes of this subsection and in addition to any other requirement, a valid fish receiving ticket is a fish receiving ticket that has been received by the department on or before November 1st of the year in which the shrimp were caught. Application for a Puget Sound shrimp pot experimental fishery permit must be received at the department licensing office on or before April 1st of each year after 1994, or the license holder will be deemed to have withdrawn from the fishery and the provisions of subsection (((5))) (3) of this section will apply.

(((5))) (3) If, after December 31, 1994, the director determines that the number of Puget Sound shrimp pot fishers has dropped below twenty license holders, the director may admit additional fishers until there are twenty license holders. Individuals who were eligible in 1994 but did not obtain a Puget Sound shrimp pot experimental fishery permit, or individuals who have withdrawn from the fishery, are excluded from application for a future Puget Sound shrimp pot experimental fishery permit. Owners of vessels from which Puget Sound shrimp were landed with shellfish pot gear during the eligibility period, but who did not qualify for a 1994 Puget Sound shrimp pot experimental fishery permit, are eligible for application for a future Puget Sound shrimp pot experimental fishery permit, beginning with the owner of the vessel or vessels from which the highest nonqualifying catch was made and progressing to the lowest nonqualifying catch. If the pool of fishers who landed shrimp during the qualifying period is exhausted, new fishers will be invited to apply and will be selected at random from the applicants.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 75.28.740 and 75.30.220. 94-07-092 (Order 94-14), 220-88A-030, filed 3/17/94, effective 4/17/94.]

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending Order 94-14, filed 3/17/94, effective 4/17/94)

WAC 220-88A-040 Emerging commercial fishery--Eligibility for Puget Sound shrimp trawl experimental fishery permit. (1) ((A single 1994 Puget Sound shrimp trawl experimental permit will be issued to an individual who has demonstrated historical and continuous participation in the Puget Sound shrimp trawl fishery by:

(a) Being the owner of a vessel or vessels that held a trawl (Puget Sound) license (RCW 75.28.140(1)) during either 1991 or 1992, held this license during 1993, and:

(b) Can document, by means of valid fish receiving tickets, that the vessel or vessels landed at least 2,800 pounds of shrimp taken from Puget Sound with trawl gear during the eligibility period April 16, 1991 through October 15, 1993. No shrimp landed with any other gear, shrimp taken from waters other than Puget Sound, or shrimp taken during any other period of time satisfy this eligibility requirement. For purposes of this subsection and in addition to any other requirement, a valid fish receiving ticket is a fish receiving ticket that has been received by the department on or before November 1, 1993.

(2))) No emerging commercial fishery license holder may receive more than one Puget Sound shrimp trawl experimental fishery permit. The pounds of shrimp landed from the vessel or vessels may be used to qualify only one experimental fishery permit.

(((3))) (2) Puget Sound shrimp trawl experimental fishery permits are valid only for the year issued and expire with the emerging commercial fishery license on December 31st of each year.

(((4))) (3) Except as provided for in subsection (((5))) (4) of this section, after December 31, 1994, a Puget Sound shrimp trawl experimental fishery permit will only be issued to an individual who held an emerging commercial fishery license and Puget Sound shrimp trawl experimental fishery permit the previous year((, and who can establish by means of valid shellfish receiving tickets that a minimum of 2,000 pounds of shrimp taken with shellfish trawl gear were landed from Puget Sound during the previous year. For purposes of this subsection and in addition to any other requirement, a valid fish receiving ticket is a fish receiving ticket that has been received by the department on or before November 1st of the year in which the shrimp were caught)). Application for a Puget Sound shrimp trawl experimental fishery permit must be received at the department licensing office on or before April 1st of each year after 1994, or the license holder will be deemed to have withdrawn from the fishery and the provisions of subsection (((5))) (4) of this section will apply.

(((5))) (4) If, after December 31, 1994, the director determines that the number of Puget Sound shrimp trawl fishers has dropped below ten license holders, the director may admit additional fishers until there are ten license holders. Individuals who were eligible in 1994 but did not obtain a Puget Sound shrimp trawl experimental fishery permit, or individuals who have withdrawn from the fishery, are excluded from application for a future Puget Sound shrimp trawl experimental fishery permit. Owners of vessels from which Puget Sound shrimp were landed with trawl gear during the eligibility period, but who did not qualify for a 1994 Puget Sound shrimp trawl experimental fishery permit, are eligible for application for a future Puget Sound shrimp pot experimental fishery permit, beginning with the owner of the vessel or vessels from which the highest nonqualifying catch was made and progressing to the lowest nonqualifying catch. If the pool of fishers who landed shrimp during the qualifying period is exhausted, new fishers will be invited to apply and will be selected at random from the applicants.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 75.28.740 and 75.30.220. 94-07-092 (Order 94-14), 220-88A-040, filed 3/17/94, effective 4/17/94.]

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending Order 94-14, filed 3/17/94, effective 4/17/94)

WAC 220-88A-060 Emerging commercial fishery--Puget Sound shrimp--Shrimp districts. The following areas are defined as Puget Sound shrimp fishing districts:

(((a))) (1) Shrimp District 1 - (Protection Island, Discovery Bay) Waters south of a line from McCurdy Point on the Quimper Peninsula to the northern tip of Protection Island then to Rocky Point on the Miller Peninsula and all waters of Discovery Bay.

(((b))) (2) Shrimp District 2 - (Griffin Bay) Waters south of a line projected true east west through Turn Rock Light from San Juan Island to Lopez Island and north of a line projected true east from Cattle Point on San Juan Island to Lopez Island.

(((c))) (3) Shrimp District 3 - (Port Angeles) Waters inside Ediz Hook west of a line from the tip of Ediz Hook to the ITT Rayonier Dock.

(((d))) (4) Shrimp District 4 - (Sequim Bay) Waters of Sequim Bay south of a line projected true west from Travis Spit on the Miller Peninsula.

(((e))) (5) Shrimp District 5 - (Hood Canal) Waters of Hood Canal south of the Hood Canal Floating Bridge.

(((f))) (6) Shrimp District 6 - (Carr Inlet) Waters of Carr Inlet north of a line projected from Penrose Point to Green Point.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 75.28.740 and 75.30.220. 94-07-092 (Order 94-14), 220-88A-060, filed 3/17/94, effective 4/17/94.]

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending Order 97-55, filed 3/31/97, effective 5/1/97 WAC 220-88A-070 Emerging commercial fishery--Puget Sound shrimp pot experimental fishery--Seasons and gear--Spot prawn restriction. It is unlawful to fish for shrimp for commercial purposes in Puget Sound using shellfish pot gear except as provided for in this section:

(1) Seasons - All waters of Puget Sound are open to shellfish pot gear April 16 through October 15 except:

(a) Open in Shrimp District 2 from May 16 through September 15 only.

(b) Closed in Shrimp Districts 1, 3, 4, 5 and 6 unless opened by emergency regulation.

(c) Open in the waters of Lopez Sound south of a line projected east and west from the northern tip of Trump Island from July 10 through October 15 only.

(d) Closed in Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 24C inshore of the 42 fathom depth contour from Onamac Point, Camano Island, to Sunset Beach, Camano Island.

(e) Closed in Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 26A within two nautical miles of the number 1 bell buoy at Possession Point.

(2) Gear restrictions -

(a) In all areas, maximum 100 pots per fisher, except((:

(i) Maximum 75 pots per fisher in Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 28B.

(ii))) maximum 50 pots per fisher in Shrimp District 2.

(b) In all ((shrimp districts)) areas:

(i) Buoys must be orange in color and consist of durable material that will remain floating on the surface with five pounds attached; bleach or antifreeze bottles or other containers may not be used as floats.

(ii) The line attaching the pot to the buoy must be weighted sufficiently to prevent the line from floating on the surface.

(((c) In Shrimp District 2:

(i) The entire top, bottom and sides of the pot, except entrance tunnels, must be constructed of mesh material having a minimum mesh of such size that a 7/8 inch square peg can pass through without changing the shape of the opening.

(ii) All entrance tunnels must open into the pot from the sides.

(iii) The sum of the maximum widths of all entrance tunnels must not exceed one-half of the perimeter of the bottom of the pot.)) (iii) The maximum perimeter of shrimp pots must not exceed ten feet and the maximum height must not exceed two feet.

(3) Spot shrimp size restriction: It is unlawful to ((possess)) retain spot shrimp taken by shellfish pot gear that ((average more than 20 shrimp per pound as sampled by a minimum of two samples of at least one pound each of whole unbroken shrimp taken at random from throughout the individual load landed or in possession)) have a carapace length less than 1 and 3/16 inches. Carapace length is defined as the length between the posterior mid-dorsal margin to the posterior-most part of the eye-stalk orbit.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 75.08.080. 97-08-052 (Order 97-55), 220-88A-070, filed 3/31/97, effective 5/1/97. Statutory Authority: RCW 75.28.740 and 75.30.220. 94-07-092 (Order 94-14), 220-88A-070, filed 3/17/94, effective 4/17/94.]

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending Order 97-55, filed 3/31/97, effective 5/1/97 WAC 220-88A-080 Emerging commercial fishery--Puget Sound shrimp beam trawl experimental fishery--Seasons and gear. It is unlawful to fish for shrimp for commercial purposes in Puget Sound using trawl gear except as provided for in this section:

(1) Seasons - Open April 16 through October 15 in Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas 20A, 20B, 21A, 22A, 23A, 23B, 23C, 25A, 25B and 29 except:

(a) Open July 10 through October 15 in the waters of Lopez Sound (22A) south of a line projected east and west from the northern tip of Trump Island.

(b) Closed in Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 20A in waters less than ((60)) 20 fathoms deep, and no trawling is allowed from April 16 through July 15.

(c) Trawling is prohibited in waters less than 100 feet deep.

(d) Trawling is prohibited in Shrimp Districts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6.

(e) Open only in those waters of Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Area 21A north and west of a line from the southern tip of Sinclair Island to Carter Point on Lummi Island.

(2) Gear restrictions - Beam trawl gear only. Otter trawl gear may not be used.

(a) Maximum beam width in Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas 20A, 20B, 21A, and 22A is 25 feet.

(b) Maximum beam width in Marine Fish-Shellfish Management and Catch Reporting Areas 23A, 23B, 23C, 25A, 25B, and 29 is 60 feet.

(3) It is unlawful to retain spot shrimp.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 75.08.080. 97-08-052 (Order 97-55), 220-88A-080, filed 3/31/97, effective 5/1/97; 94-19-001 (Order 94-96), 220-88A-080, filed 9/7/94, effective 10/8/94. Statutory Authority: RCW 75.28.740 and 75.30.220. 94-07-092 (Order 94-14), 220-88A-080, filed 3/17/94, effective 4/17/94.]

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