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2012 groundfish regulations on agenda for Dec. 2 Commission meeting in Portland

November 23, 2011

SALEM, Ore. – The Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission will consider the 2012 regulations for the marine groundfish seasons when it meets on Friday, Dec. 2 in Portland at the Ramada Inn and Suites, 6221 NE 82 Ave. The meeting will begin at 8 a.m. and the agenda includes the following items:

The Commission will be asked to adopt the 2012 regulations for sport and commercial groundfish fisheries. The harvest specifications and season structure for these marine species are set by the Pacific Fishery Management Council and the state has the authority to adopt concurrent or more conservative regulations.

As part of this process, the Commission will be asked to set the state sport and commercial harvest caps for five species or species groups of nearshore groundfish.

ODFW staff also has proposed two changes to the sport groundfish seasons for 2012. Both measures are aimed at providing more predictable seasons and reducing the number of early season closures. The first would restrict the harvest of groundfish to waters less than 30 fathoms from April to September, and the second would close the cabezon season during the winter months of January through March and October through December.

The Commission also will be asked to adopt various administrative rules that clarify and simplify the submission of commercial fish tickets, which are used by the state to verify the species and weight of commercially harvested fish.

The Commission will be asked to consider $518,732 in funding for 14 projects recommended by the Fish Restoration and Enhancement Program and $107,178 for three projects recommended by the Access and Habitat Program. Staff also has proposed the re-appointment of two members of the Access and Habitat Board – Ron Borisch of Keizer and Barry DelCurto or Halfway. The A&H program funds projects that will open private land to hunting or improve wildlife habitat.

The Commission will be asked to approve the transfer of the former site of the Butte Falls Hatchery to the Butte Falls School District. The hatchery was closed in the 2009-11 biennium. Now that the raceways have been removed, ODFW is proposing that the part of property still under state ownership be transferred to the district with the condition it be used for a public purpose.

Finally, the Commission will consider a citizen petition to liberalize the Landowner Preference Program to include parcels smaller than 40 acres. This program provides big game tags to landowners that don’t draw a tag through the controlled hunt process. 

The Commission is the policy-making body for fish and wildlife issues in the state. The seven-member panel meets monthly. Agenda item exhibits may be requested by calling the ODFW Director’s Office at 800-720-6339 or 503-947-6044.

Public testimony will be held Friday morning immediately following the expenditure report. Persons seeking to testify on issues not on the formal agenda may do so by making arrangements with the ODFW Director’s Office, at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting, by calling 800-720-6339 or 503-947-6044.

Reasonable accommodations will be provided as needed for individuals requesting assistive hearing devices, sign language interpreters or large-print materials. Individuals needing these types of accommodations may call the ODFW Director’s Office at 800-720-6339 or 503-947-6044 at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting.

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Contact:

Jessica Sall cell (503) 931-6858
Michelle Dennehy (503) 947-6022; cell (503) 931-2748

 
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