FISH AND WILDLIFE
[Order 20-58—Filed April 13, 2020, 10:18 a.m., effective April 13, 2020, 10:18 a.m.]
Effective Date of Rule: Immediately upon filing.
Purpose: Amends Puget Sound commercial crabbing rules.
Citation of Rules Affected by this Order: Repealing WAC 220-340-45500H; and amending WAC 220-340-455.
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: This emergency rule is needed to close Puget Sound commercial crab Region 3-3 on April 15, 2020. It is necessary to conform to closure dates previously agreed to with comanagers in the harvest management plan. Region 3-3 will remain closed to state commercial harvest until October 1, 2020, when the next management plan harvest period begins for state commercial harvesters. There is insufficient time to adopt permanent rules.
Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Comply with Federal Statute: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Federal Rules or Standards: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Recently Enacted State Statutes: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted at the Request of a Nongovernmental Entity: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted on the Agency's own Initiative: New 1, Amended 0, Repealed 1.
Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Clarify, Streamline, or Reform Agency Procedures: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted using Negotiated Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Pilot Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Other Alternative Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.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: April 13, 2020.
WAC 220-340-45500ICommercial crab fishery—Seasons and areas—Puget Sound.
Notwithstanding the provisions of WAC 220-340-455:
1) Effective immediately until further notice, all of Crab Management Regions 1, 2-East, 2-West, 3-1, and 3-2 are closed. Region 1 includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 20A, 20B, 21A, 21B, 22A and 22B. Region 2-East includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 24A, 24B, 24C, 24D and 26A East. Region 2-West includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 25B, 25D, and 26A West. Region 3-1 includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 23A and 23B. Region 3-2 includes Marine Fish-Shellfish Catch Reporting Areas 23D, 25A, and 25E.
2) Effective immediately until 7:59 p.m. April 15, 2020, it is permissible to fish for Dungeness crab for commercial purposes in Crab Management Region 3-3. Region 3-3 includes Catch Reporting Areas 23C and 29.
3) Effective immediately, until further notice, it is unlawful for any license holder or alternate operator to fish for crabs for commercial purposes with more than 50 pots per license per buoy tag number in Crab Management Region 3-3.
4) All remaining buoy tags per license must be onboard the designated vessel and available for immediate inspection.
The following section of the Washington Administrative Code is repealed:
Commercial crab fishery—Seasons and areas—Puget Sound. (20-29)