FISH AND WILDLIFE
[Order 22-175—Filed August 18, 2022, 12:40 p.m., effective September 10, 2022]
Effective Date of Rule: September 10, 2022.
Purpose: The purpose of this emergency rule is to open recreational sturgeon retention seasons for a portion of the Columbia River and the Cowlitz River.
Citation of Rules Affected by this Order: Amending WAC 220-312-060.
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 allow a limited harvest of white sturgeon in the Columbia River from the Wauna powerlines upstream to Bonneville Dam and the Cowlitz River. The legal-size population is large enough to allow for a retention fishery within the lower Columbia River. This action is consistent with decisions made by the states of Washington and Oregon during the Columbia River compact hearing on August 18, 2022. 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Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Comply with Federal Statute: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Federal Rules or Standards: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Recently Enacted State Statutes: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted at the Request of a Nongovernmental Entity: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted on the Agency's own Initiative: New 1, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Clarify, Streamline, or Reform Agency Procedures: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted using Negotiated Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Pilot Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Other Alternative Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.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: August 18, 2022.
WAC 220-312-06000XFreshwater exceptions to statewide rules—Columbia River.
Effective September 10 through September 17, 2022 the provisions of WAC 220-312-060, WAC 220-312-030, and WAC 220-316-010 regarding white sturgeon retention seasons for the Columbia River from the Wauna powerline crossing to Bonneville Dam and for the Cowlitz River, are as follows. All other provisions of WAC 220-312-060, WAC 220-316-010, and WAC 220-312-030 not addressed herein remain in effect unless otherwise amended by emergency rule:
From Wauna powerlines upstream to Bonneville Dam, including the Cowlitz River:
(a) It is permissible to retain white sturgeon on Saturday, September 10, Wednesday September 14, and Saturday, September 17, 2022.
(i) The daily limit of white sturgeon is one fish.
(ii) Minimum fork length 44 inches. Maximum fork length 50 inches.
(b) Catch and release angling for sturgeon is permissible on days not open to sturgeon retention.