FISH AND WILDLIFE
Date of Adoption: August 18, 1999.
Purpose: Personal use rules.
Citation of Existing Rules Affected by this Order: Amending WAC 220-57A-145.
Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 75.08.080.
Under RCW 34.05.350 the agency for good cause finds that immediate adoption, amendment, or repeal of a rule is necessary for the preservation of the public health, safety, or general welfare, and that observing the time requirements of notice and opportunity to comment upon adoption of a permanent rule would be contrary to the public interest.
Reasons for this Finding: Estimates of chinook passing the Chittenden Locks so far, indicate the chinook return will exceed the forecast of run strength. Through August 10, the estimated number of chinook having already entered Lake Washington was approximately 3,300 fish. Based on past run timing, the final chinook run size this year will far exceed the preseason forecast of 5,300.
The run is a mixture of hatchery fish, from the University of Washington and the state facility at Issaquah, and natural fish produced from the Cedar River and Bear Creek system. However, they are predominately Issaquah Hatchery returns. The preseason forecast expected 900 wild and 4,400 hatchery fish to return this year, so with Issaquah brood stock needs being less than 1,200 fish, there are many fish available for harvest. Wild fish destined for Cedar River hold in the southern end of Lake Washington, and Bear Creek is a Sammamish River tributary downstream of Sammamish Lake. Consequently, these wild fish should not be impacted by a fishery in Sammamish Lake for the hatchery stock.
Chinook have already moved into Sammamish Lake. Results from sonic tagging at the locks have documented this, and it is further substantiated by the Issaquah Hatchery manager who reports some fish have entered the holding pond at Issaquah Hatchery.
Muckleshoot and Suquamish tribes’ technical staff have been contacted, and they do not object to the opening of the Lake Sammamish sport fishery.
The lake has a scheduled coho season, but there are conservation concerns for a weak run of sockeye and kokanee. Protection for these species is provided by a requirement that they be released immediately, if encountered. There is no need for a night closure nor special gear restrictions for this salmon fishery, and the 1/4 mile closure at the mouth of Issaquah Creek would be dropped entirely for the duration of the chinook and coho seasons.
Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Comply with Federal Statute: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Federal Rules or Standards: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Recently Enacted State Statutes: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted at Request of a Nongovernmental Entity: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted on the Agency's Own Initiative: New 1, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Clarify, Streamline, or Reform Agency Procedures: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted Using Negotiated Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Pilot Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Other Alternative Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0. Effective Date of Rule: Immediately.
August 18, 1999
for Jeff P. Koenings
Notwithstanding the provisions of WAC 22-57A-145, effective immediately until further notice, open to personal use salmon angling with a special daily limit of two salmon, except sockeye and kokanee must be released immediately.