WSR 20-13-068
[Order 20-100—Filed June 15, 2020, 5:27 p.m., effective June 20, 2020]
Effective Date of Rule: June 20, 2020.
Purpose: This rule is needed to reopen recreational fisheries in Marine Area 4, effective June 20, 2020, which was previously closed due to the COVID-19 situation and to comply with Governor Inslee's statewide Proclamation to "Stay Home, Stay Healthy." Reopening these recreational fisheries is consistent with the Governor's Proclamation amendment 20-25.2 for the partial reopening of outdoor recreational activities. Additionally, Clallam County entered Phase 2 of the governor's reopening plan on June 1.
This rule returns Marine Area 4 fish and shellfish fisheries to permanent rules, unless otherwise amended by emergency rule. The recreational fisheries reopening under this emergency rule include coastal bottomfish, sturgeon, gamefish, forage fish, coastal crab, coastal shrimp, other coastal food fish and shellfish.
Citation of Rules Affected by this Order: Repealing WAC 220-310-16000B, 220-310-08000C, 220-313-07000W, 220-314-02000G, 220-316-01000B, and 220-330-01000J.
Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 77.04.012, 77.04.020, 77.12.045, 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: This rule is needed to reopen recreational fishing opportunities in Marine Area 4, effective June 20, 2020, pursuant to the Governor's Proclamation amendment 20-25.2, issued April 27, 2020, indicating that recreational activities including fishing may resume, when and where permitted. In addition, these openings have been coordinated with local and state health officials.
The governor's proclamation amendment also includes requirements to exclude gatherings with people who are not members of the same household and maintain social distancing for the continued protection of public health and safety. The fishery openings considered that requirement as a basis for the decision to reopen fisheries, but do not incorporate those social distance elements within the regulations themselves. While not imposed in the Washington department of fish and wildlife's (WDFW) fishery rules, they are and remain, a requirement of the governor's proclamation. Failure to abide by those social distance requirements could result in increased health risks requiring future fishery closures.
Marine Areas 1-4 remain closed to recreational halibut fishing in permanent rules.
Additionally, it is WDFW's understanding that the Makah tribal reservation, which includes the port of Neah Bay, remains closed to nontribal members. Therefore, while Marine Area 4, both east and west of the Bonilla-Tatoosh Line, is reopening under this emergency rule, anglers will need to access area 4 from Marine Areas 3 or 5.
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 0, Amended 0, Repealed 6.
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 15, 2020.
Amy H. Windrope
for Kelly Susewind
The following sections of the Washington Administrative Code are repealed effective 12:01 a.m., June 20, 2020:
WAC 220-310-16000B
Daily limits of forage fish and other food fish not otherwise provided for. (20-88)
WAC 220-310-08000C
Game fish seasonsGeneral rules. (20-88)
WAC 220-313-07000W
Coastal salmonSaltwater seasons and daily limits. (20-88)
WAC 220-314-02000G
Possession limitBottomfish. (20-88)
WAC 220-316-01000B
SturgeonAreas, seasons, limits and unlawful acts. (20-88)
WAC 220-330-01000J
Shellfish—Daily limits. (20-94)