FISH AND WILDLIFE
Effective Date of Rule: April 28, 2008, 7:00 p.m.
Purpose: The purpose of this rule making is to allow fishing opportunity in the Columbia River while protecting salmon listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act. This rule making implements federal court orders governing Washington's relationship with treaty Indian tribes, federal law governing Washington's relationship with Oregon, and Washington fish and wildlife commission policy guidance for Columbia River fisheries.
Citation of Existing Rules Affected by this Order: Repealing WAC 220-33-01000F and 220-33-01000G; and amending WAC 220-33-010.
Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 77.04.130, 77.12.045, and 77.12.047.
Other Authority: United States v. Oregon, Civil No. 68-513-KI (D. Or.), Order Adopting 2005-2007 Interim Management Agreement For Upriver Chinook, Sockeye, Steelhead, Coho & White Sturgeon (May 11, 2005) (Doc. No. 2407); Northwest Gillnetters Ass'n v. Sandison, 95 Wn.2d 638, 628 P.2d 800 (1981); Washington fish and wildlife commission policies concerning Columbia River fisheries; 40 Stat. 515 (Columbia River compact).
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: Sets commercial fishing periods in the Tongue Point/South Channel select area. Given a high predicted upriver run forecast, low cumulative impacts to date in SAFE commercial fisheries, and favorable test fishing results, staff believe this is an opportune time to initiate a full-fleet spring fishery at Tongue Point to help evaluate the feasibility of reestablishing production-level releases of spring chinook at this site. Impacts to ESA-listed stocks in these fisheries are covered under the biological opinion for the 2005-2007 interim management agreement. Season is consistent with Washington fish and wildlife commission guidance for 2006-2008 sturgeon fishery management. This rule is consistent with actions of the Columbia River compact hearings of February 15 and April 24, 2008. This rule conforms Washington and Oregon state rules. There is insufficient time to promulgate permanent rules.
Washington and Oregon jointly regulate Columbia River fisheries under the congressionally ratified Columbia River compact. Four Indian tribes have treaty fishing rights in the Columbia River. The treaties preempt state regulations that fail to allow the tribes an opportunity to take a fair share of the available fish, and the states must manage other fisheries accordingly. Sohappy v. Smith, 302 F. Supp. 899 (D. Or. 1969). A federal court order sets the current parameters for sharing between treaty Indians and others. United States v. Oregon, Civil No. 68-513-KI (D. Or.), Order Adopting 2005-2007 Interim Management Agreement For Upriver Chinook, Sockeye, Steelhead, Coho & White Sturgeon (May 11, 2005) (Doc. No. 2407).
Some Columbia River Basin salmon and steelhead stocks are listed as threatened or endangered under the federal Endangered Species Act. The National Marine Fisheries Service has issued biological opinions under 16 U.S.C. § 1536 that allow for some incidental take of these species in treaty and nontreaty Columbia River fisheries. The Washington and Oregon fish and wildlife commissions have developed policies to guide the implementation of these biological opinions in the states' regulation of nontreaty fisheries. Columbia River nontreaty fisheries are monitored very closely to ensure compliance with federal court orders, the Endangered Species Act, and commission guidelines. Because conditions change rapidly, the fisheries are managed almost exclusively by emergency rule. Representatives from the Washington (WDFW) and Oregon (ODFW) departments of fish and wildlife convene public hearings and take public testimony when considering proposals for new emergency rules. WDFW and ODFW then adopt regulations reflecting agreements reached.
Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Comply with Federal Statute: New 1, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Federal Rules or Standards: New 1, 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 2.
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.
Date Adopted: April 28, 2008.
for Jeff Koenings
1. Blind Slough Select Area
a) Area: Blind Slough and Knappa Slough areas. From May 1 through June 13, the lower boundary of the Knappa Slough fishing area is extended downstream to boundary lines defined by markers on the west end of Minaker Island to markers on Karlson Island and the Oregon shore (fall boundary). Concurrent Washington/Oregon waters extend downstream of the railroad bridge.
b) Dates: 7:00 p.m. Mondays to 7:00 a.m. Tuesdays, and 7:00 p.m. Thursdays to 7:00 a.m. Fridays immediately through June 13, 2008
c) Gear: 8-inch maximum mesh. Nets are restricted to 100 fathoms in length, with no weight restriction on leadline. Use of additional weights or anchors attached directly to the leadline is allowed.
d) Allowable sales: salmon, white sturgeon, and shad.
2. Deep River Select Area
a) Area: From the markers at USCG navigation marker #16, upstream to the Highway 4 Bridge.
b) Dates: 7:00 p.m. Mondays to 7:00 a.m. Tuesdays, and 7:00 p.m. Thursdays to 7:00 a.m. Fridays immediately through June 13, 2008.
c) Gear: 8-inch maximum. Nets are restricted to a maximum length of 100 fathoms with no weight restriction on leadline. Use of additional weights or anchors attached directly to the leadline is allowed. Nets cannot be tied off of any stationary structures. Nets may not fully cross the navigation channel.
d) Allowable sales: salmon, white sturgeon, and shad.
e) Miscellaneous: Transportation or possession of fish outside the fishing area (except to the sampling station) is unlawful until department staff has biologically sampled individual catches. After sampling, fishers will be issued a transportation permit by agency staff.
3. Tongue Point/South Channel Select Area
a) Area: Reduced Tongue Point and South Channel areas open entire season. The reduced Tongue Point fishing area includes all waters bounded by a line extended from the upstream (southern most) pier (#1) at the Tongue Point Job Corps facility through navigation marker #6 to Mott Island, a line from a marker at the southeast end of Mott Island northeasterly to a marker on the northwest tip of Lois Island, and a line from a marker on the southwest end of Lois Island westerly to a marker on the Oregon shore. The South Channel area includes all waters bounded by a line from a marker on John Day Point through the green USCG buoy #7 to a marker on the southwest end of Lois Island upstream to an upper boundary line from a marker on Settler Point northwesterly to the flashing red USCG marker #10, northwesterly to a marker on Burnside Island defining the upstream terminus of South Channel.
b) Dates: 7:00 p.m. Mondays to 7:00 a.m. Tuesdays, and 7:00 p.m. Thursdays to 7:00 a.m. Fridays from April 28 through June 13, 2008
c) Gear: In the reduced Tongue Point fishing area, gear restricted to 8-inch maximum mesh size, maximum net length of 250 fathoms, and weight not to exceed two pounds on any one fathom. In the South Channel fishing area, gear restricted to 8-inch maximum mesh size, maximum net length of 100 fathoms, and no weight restriction on leadline.
d) Additional gear regulations: Multiple Net Rule: It will be legal to have onboard a commercial vessel more than one net provided the nets are of mesh size legal for the fishery, or the net has a minimum mesh size of 9 inches, and the length of any one net does not exceed 1,500 feet in length.
Nets not specifically authorized for use in this fishery may be onboard the vessel if properly stored. A properly stored net is defined as a net on a drum that is fully covered by a tarp (canvas or plastic) and bound with a minimum of ten revolutions of rope with a diameter of 3/8 (0.375) inches or greater
e) Allowable sales: salmon, white sturgeon, and shad.
f) Miscellaneous Regulations: During April 28 through May 9, transportation or possession of fish outside the fishing area is unlawful until ODFW staff has biologically sampled individual catches. A sampling station will be established at the MERTS dock during the first four fishing periods (April 28-May 9). After sampling, fishers will be issued a transportation permit by agency staff. Beginning May 12, fishers are required to call 503-325-3418 and leave a message including name, catch, and where and when the fish will be sold
The following section of the Washington Administrative Code is repealed effective 7:00 p.m. April 28, 2008:
|WAC 220-33-01000F||Columbia River seasons below Bonneville. (08-64)|
The following section of the Washington Administrative Code is repealed effective June 14, 2008:
|WAC 220-33-01000G||Columbia River seasons below Bonneville.|