SSB 6317

This analysis was prepared by non-partisan legislative staff for the use of legislative members in their deliberations. This analysis is not a part of the legislation nor does it constitute a statement of legislative intent.

C 235 L 18

Synopsis as Enacted

Brief Description: Increasing commercial fishing license fees for nonresidents.

Sponsors: Senate Committee on Agriculture, Water, Natural Resources & Parks (originally sponsored by Senators Van De Wege, King, Rivers, Takko, Hasegawa and Saldaña; by request of Department of Fish and Wildlife).

Senate Committee on Agriculture, Water, Natural Resources & Parks

Senate Committee on Ways & Means

House Committee on Appropriations

Background: Role of the Department of Fish and Wildlife (DFW). DFW serves as manager of the state's fish and wildlife resources. Among other duties, DFW must protect and manage fish and wildlife, including establishing the time, place, manner, and methods used to harvest or enjoy fish and wildlife.

Commercial Fishery Licensing. DFW manages the commercial harvest of fish and shellfish. Commercial fishers, and fish buyers and dealers, must obtain applicable licenses from DFW. In general, commercial fishing license fees are structured by species and fishing gear. There is a resident and nonresident fee for each license type.

2017 Commercial Licensing Bill. In 2017, the Legislature passed a bill making a number of changes to commercial licensing including:

Authorization for the Wanapum Band of Indians (Wanapums) Salmon Fishing. Current statute provides the director of DFW with specific authority to issue permits to members of the Wanapums to take salmon for ceremonial and subsistence purposes. DFW has the discretion to determine the areas in which permits are valid and must regulate the times and methods used for fishing.

Summary: Nonresident fees for commercial fishing, dealing, and delivery licenses are generally increased to establish a fee differential of $385 between each resident and nonresident license. Examples of specific changes include the following:

Additionally, resident fees for fishing guide licenses and certain wholesale fish buyer's endorsements are reduced. The resident food fish guide license is decreased from $280 to $210, and resident game fish guide license is decreased from $410 to $305. These changes result in a $385 fee differential between resident and nonresident fees. The fee for a wholesale fish buyer's endorsement for business operations with only one fish buyer is decreased from $245 to $50.

Statutory authority for a ceremonial and subsistence fishery for the Wanapums is expanded beyond salmon to also include other freshwater food fish.

Votes on Final Passage:








June 7, 2018

January 1, 2019 (Sections 1-8 and 10-13)