WSR 09-16-085




[ Order 09-156 -- Filed July 31, 2009, 3:36 p.m. , effective August 3, 2009, 6:00 a.m. ]

Effective Date of Rule: August 3, 2009, 6:00 a.m.

Purpose: The purpose of this rule making is to provide for treaty Indian fishing opportunity in the Columbia River while protecting salmon listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). This rule making implements federal court orders governing Washington's relationship with treaty Indian tribes and federal law governing Washington's relationship with Oregon.

Citation of Existing Rules Affected by this Order: Repealing WAC 220-32-05700B; and amending WAC 220-32-057.

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 2008-2017 United States v. Oregon Management Agreement (Aug. 12, 2008) (Doc. No. 2546); Puget Sound Gillnetters Ass'n v. Moos, 92 Wn.2d 939, 603 P.2d 819 (1979); State v. James, 72 Wn.2d 746, 435 P.2d 521 (1967); 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; and that state or federal law or federal rule or a federal deadline for state receipt of federal funds requires immediate adoption of a rule.

Reasons for this Finding: Adopts a sturgeon set line commercial treaty fishery in The Dalles Pool only (SMCRA 1G). Allow sales only of sturgeon, (including platform and hook-and-line) caught in SMCRA 1G. Sturgeon remain available for harvest based on the 2009 sturgeon guidelines. Conforms state rules to tribal rules. Consistent with compact action of July 31, 2009. There is insufficient time to promulgate permanent regulations.

New regulations for 2009 include fisheries that are described in the MOA between Washington state and the Yakama Nation. Yakama Nation tribal members will be allowed to fish for subsistence purposes within a specific area of the Washington shoreline below Bonneville Dam when open for enrolled Yakama Nation members under lawfully enacted Yakama Nation tribal subsistence fisheries. Sales will be allowed when the open fishery is concurrent with either commercial gillnet openings or platform gear in Zone 6 (SMCRA 1F, 1G, 1H). Sales of fish caught in this fishery are consistent with mainstem Zone 6 (SMCRA 1F, 1G, 1H) allowable sales, with the exception of sturgeon (which may not be sold or kept for subsistence purposes).

The Yakama, Warm Springs, Umatilla, and Nez Perce Indian tribes have treaty fishing rights in the Columbia River and inherent sovereign authority to regulate their fisheries. Washington and Oregon also have some authority to regulate fishing by treaty Indians in the Columbia River, authority that the states exercise jointly under the congressionally ratified Columbia River compact. Sohappy v. Smith, 302 F. Supp. 899 (D. Or. 1969). The tribes and the states adopt parallel regulations for treaty Indian fisheries under the supervision of the federal courts. Some salmon and steelhead stocks in the Columbia River are listed as threatened or endangered under the federal ESA.

Columbia River fisheries are monitored very closely to ensure consistency with court orders and ESA guidelines. Because conditions change rapidly, the fisheries are managed almost exclusively by emergency rule. As required by court order, the Washington (WDFW) and Oregon (ODFW) departments of fish and wildlife convene public hearings and invite tribal participation when considering proposals for new emergency rules affecting treaty fishing rights. Sohappy, 302 F. Supp. at 912. WDFW and ODFW then adopt regulations reflecting agreements reached. There is insufficient time to adopt permanent rules.

Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Comply with Federal Statute: New 1, Amended 0, Repealed 1; Federal Rules or Standards: New 1, Amended 0, Repealed 1; 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 1.

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: July 31, 2009.

Philip Anderson


WAC 220-32-05700B   Columbia River sturgeon seasons above Bonneville Dam   Notwithstanding the provisions of WAC 220-32-057, effective immediately, it is unlawful to take, fish for or possess sturgeon for commercial purposes in Columbia River Salmon Management Catch Reporting Areas 1F, 1G, and 1H, except that those individuals possessing treaty fishing rights under the Yakama, Warm Springs, Umatilla, and Nez Perce treaties may fish for sturgeon with set line gear under the following provisions:

1. Open period: 6:00 a.m. August 3 through 6:00 p.m. August 15, 2009.

2. Area: 1G (The Dalles Pool only).

3. Gear: Setlines. Fishers are encouraged to use circle hooks and avoid J-hooks. It is unlawful to use setline gear with more than 100 hooks per set line, with hooks less than the minimum size of 9/0, with treble hooks, without visible buoys attached, and with buoys that do not specify operator and tribal identification.

4. Allowable Sales: Only sturgeon caught in SMCRA 1G between 43 and 54 inches in fork length may be sold. Sturgeon within the size limits stated above and caught in The Dalles pool (SMCRA 1G) platform and hook and line fishery may be sold during the open periods of the set line fishery.

5. Sanctuaries: Standard sanctuaries applicable to these gear types.

6. Additional Regulations: 24-hour quick reporting required for Washington wholesale dealers, pursuant to WAC 220-69-240.

7. Miscellaneous: It is unlawful to sell, barter, or attempt to sell or barter sturgeon eggs that have been removed from the body cavity of a sturgeon prior to sale of the sturgeon to a wholesale dealer licensed under chapter RCW 75.28, or to sell or barter sturgeon eggs at retail. It is unlawful to deliver to a wholesale dealer licensed under chapter RCW 75.28 any sturgeon that are not in the round with the head and tail intact.



The following section of the Washington Administrative Code is repealed effective 6:01 p.m. August 15, 2009:

WAC 220-32-05700B Columbia River sturgeon seasons above Bonneville. (07-156)

Washington State Code Reviser's Office