WSR 03-13-147

PROPOSED RULES

DEPARTMENT OF

FISH AND WILDLIFE

[ Filed June 18, 2003, 11:59 a.m. ]

Original Notice.

Preproposal statement of inquiry was filed as WSR 03-09-122.

Title of Rule: Redefine shrimp pot escapement mechanism requirements and create a new shrimp district.

Purpose: To amend rule that requires a maximum size thread of 100 for escape mechanisms as such a size is no longer available from the manufacturer. Create a new shrimp district to meet emerging management needs for conservation and allocation purposes.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 77.12.047.

Statute Being Implemented: RCW 77.12.047.

Summary: Current law prohibits thread size over 100 for use in commercial shrimp pot escape mechanisms, a thread size that is no longer available from the manufacturer - this will allow a larger maximum size that is available and would be consistent with the thread sizes required for crab escape mechanisms. Creating a new shrimp district will provide for greater flexibility of managing the discrete shrimp bed in Port Townsend Bay for allocation and conservation purposes.

Reasons Supporting Proposal: The shrimp fishery in Port Townsend Bay is very popular with commercial and recreational fishers to the extent that the bay gets fished out in a very short time. Due to the rapid harvest rate in the area it has become very problematic to manage for allocation or conservation purposes between commercial and recreational fishers and between treaty and non-Indian fisheries. The creation of this district provides management capabilities separate from the larger area that is currently managed as a larger geographic area.

Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting: Morris Barker, 600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091, (360) 902-2826; Implementation: Lew Atkins, 600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091, (360) 902-2651; and Enforcement: Bruce Bjork, 600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091, (360) 902-2373.

Name of Proponent: Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, governmental.

Rule is not necessitated by federal law, federal or state court decision.

Explanation of Rule, its Purpose, and Anticipated Effects: Current rule requires a maximum thread size of 100 to use as cord to bind parts of the shrimp pot together. When this cord deteriorates away it provides an escape mechanism for the shrimp trapped within a lost pot. Rule change would allow the industry to access an available size of thread (120) from the market place to use in the required escape mechanism for their shrimp pots. This will allow fishers to continue to participate in the fishery with legal gear that will still provide an escape mechanism for shrimp when a pot is lost. The creation of a new shrimp district will allow a discrete geographical area to be managed for conservation and allocation purposes separate from a larger geographical area. This will provide the ability to manage a popular and discrete shrimp production area separate from a larger geographic area which will allow more precise management for conservation and allocation needs.

Proposal Changes the Following Existing Rules: Amends WAC 220-16-270 and 220-52-035 to provide for the creation of a new shrimp district and allow a change to the maximum thread size allowed for the shrimp pot escape mechanism.

A small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW.

Small Business Economic Impact Statement

1. Description of the Reporting, Record-keeping, and Other Compliance Requirements of the Proposed Rule: Allows for a larger maximum thread size for use in the shrimp pot escape mechanism.

2. Kinds of Professional Services That a Small Business is Likely to Need in Order to Comply with Such Requirements: None required.

3. Costs of Compliance for Businesses, Including Costs of Equipment, Supplies, Labor, and Increased Administrative Costs: No costs anticipated.

4. Will Compliance with the Rule Cause Businesses to Lose Sales or Revenue? No - no business or revenue losses anticipated.

5. Cost of Compliance for the 10% of Businesses That are the Largest Businesses Required to Comply with the Proposed Rules Using One or More of the Following as a Basis for Comparing Costs:

a. Cost per employee;

b. Cost per hour of labor; or

c. Cost per one hundred dollars of sales.

No costs anticipated.

6. Steps Taken by the Agency to Reduce the Costs of the Rule on Small Businesses or Reasonable Justification for Not Doing So: No costs anticipated.

7. A Description of How the Agency Will Involve Small Businesses in the Development of the Rule: Rules will be developed and reviewed through the public rule process under the auspices of the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission.

8. A List of Industries That Will Be Required to Comply with the Rule: Commercial shrimp pot fishers.

A copy of the statement may be obtained by writing to Evan Jacoby, Rules Coordinator, 600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091, phone (360) 902-2930, fax (360) 902-2155.

RCW 34.05.328 does not apply to this rule adoption. Not hydraulics rules.

Hearing Location: Fox Hall/Hampton Inn, 3985 Bennett Drive, Bellingham, WA 98225, on August 1-2, 2003, at 8:00 a.m. on August 1, 2003.

Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Susan Yeager by July 21, 2003, TDD (360) 902-2207 or (360) 902-2262.

Submit Written Comments to: Evan Jacoby, Rules Coordinator, 600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091, fax (360) 902-2155, by July 30, 2003.

Date of Intended Adoption: August 1, 2003.

June 18, 2003

Evan Jacoby

Rules Coordinator

OTS-6483.2


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending Order 00-271, filed 1/5/01, effective 2/5/01)

WAC 220-16-270   Puget Sound Shrimp Districts.   The following areas shall be defined as Puget Sound Shrimp Districts:

(1) Discovery Bay Shrimp District - All waters south of a line from McCurdy Point on the Quimper Peninsula to the northern tip of Protection Island, then to Rocky Point on the Miller Peninsula, and including all waters of Discovery Bay.

(2) Port Angeles Shrimp District - All waters of Port Angeles Harbor west of a line from the eastern tip of Ediz Hook to the ITT-Rayonier dock.

(3) Sequim Bay Shrimp District - All waters of Sequim Bay south of a line projected west from Travis Spit on the Miller Peninsula.

(4) Hood Canal Shrimp District - All waters of Hood Canal south of the Hood Canal Floating Bridge.

(5) Carr Inlet Shrimp District - All waters of Carr Inlet north of a line from Penrose Point to Green Point.

(6) Port Townsend Shrimp District - All waters of Port Townsend Bay south and west of a line from Marrowstone Point to Point Hudson, including Kilisut Harbor.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 77.12.047. 01-03-016 (Order 00-271), 220-16-270, filed 1/5/01, effective 2/5/01; Order 817, 220-16-270, filed 5/29/69. Formerly WAC 220-16-020 (part).]

OTS-6484.3


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending Order 87-187, filed 11/6/87)

WAC 220-52-035   Crab and shrimp pot gear -- Escape mechanism required.   ((After October 1, 1988,)) It is unlawful to fish for or possess crab or shrimp taken for commercial purposes with shellfish pot gear unless the gear allows for escapement using at least one of the following methods:

(1) Attachment of pot lid hooks or tiedown straps with a single strand or loop of untreated cotton twine or other natural fiber no larger than thread size 120 ((for crab pots or 100 for shrimp pots)) so that the pot lid will open freely if the twine or fiber is broken.

(2) An opening in the pot mesh no less than three inches by five inches which is laced or sewn closed with untreated cotton twine or other natural fiber no larger than thread size 120 ((for crab pots or 100 for shrimp pots)). The opening must be located within the top half of the pot and be unimpeded by the entry tunnels, bait boxes, or any other structures or materials.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 75.08.080. 87-23-006 (Order 87-187), 220-52-035, filed 11/6/87.]

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