WSR 15-13-066
[Order 15-173—Filed June 11, 2015, 1:50 p.m., effective June 15, 2015]
Effective Date of Rule: June 15, 2015.
Purpose: Amend recreational fishing rules for the halibut fishery.
Citation of Existing Rules Affected by this Order: Repealing WAC 220-56-25500B; and amending WAC 220-56-255.
Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 77.04.012, 77.04.020, and 77.12.047.
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: There is sufficient quota set aside for the nearshore recreational Pacific halibut fishery in Marine Area 1 to open the fishery seven days per week until further notice. In addition, opening the nearshore recreational halibut fishery seven days per week following the closure of the all depth fishery will avoid any enforcement issues associated with having the all depth fishery open at the same time that groundfish retention is allowed with halibut on board during the nearshore fishery. This rule conforms to federal action taken by the National Marine Fisheries Service and the International Pacific Halibut Commission. 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Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Comply with Federal Statute: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Federal Rules or Standards: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Recently Enacted State Statutes: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted at Request of a Nongovernmental Entity: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted on the Agency's Own Initiative: New 1, Amended 0, Repealed 1.
Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Clarify, Streamline, or Reform Agency Procedures: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted Using Negotiated Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Pilot Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Other Alternative Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.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: June 11, 2015.
J. W. Unsworth
WAC 220-56-25500C Halibut—Seasons—Daily and possession limits.
Notwithstanding the provisions of WAC 220-56-255, 220-56-250, and 220-56-230, effective June 15, 2015, until further notice, it is unlawful to fish for or possess halibut taken for personal use, except as provided in this section:
(1) Catch Record Card Area 1: Closed
(2) Catch Record Card Area 1 (Nearshore fishery): Those waters shoreward from 46°38.17'N. lat., 124°15.88'W. long., to the WA/OR border at 46°16.00'N. lat., 124°15.88'W. long. (then connecting to the 40 fathom depth contour in Oregon).
(a) Open seven days per week until further notice.
(b) It is permissible to retain bottomfish while possessing halibut onboard boats in the nearshore area.
(3) Catch Record Card Area 2: Closed.
(a) Catch Record Card Area 2 (Northern Nearshore fishery): Those waters from 47º31.70'N. latitude south to 46º58.00'N latitude and east of a line approximating the 30 fathom depth contour as defined by the following coordinates, open seven days per week until further notice:
47º31.70' N. lat, 124º37.03' W. long
47º25.67' N. lat, 124º34.79' W. long
47º12.82' N. lat, 124º29.12' W. long
47º58.00' N. lat, 124º24.24' W. long
(b) It is permissible to take, retain and possess lingcod seaward of the 30 fathom line on any day open to the primary halibut fishery as provided in subsection (2) above.
(4) Catch Record Card Areas 3 through 13 - Closed
(5) Daily limit one halibut, no minimum size limit. The possession limit is two daily limits of halibut in any form, except the possession limit aboard the fishing vessel is one daily limit.
(6) Unless otherwise amended, all other permanent rules remain in effect.
(7) It is unlawful to land halibut in a port within an area closed to halibut fishing.
The following section of the Washington Administrative Code is repealed effective June 15, 2015:
WAC 220-56-25500B
HalibutSeasonsDaily and possession limits. (15-155)