OUTDOORS: State Fish and Wildlife Commission approves big funding request

Guide logbooks approved; Anglers meet Tuesday in Port Townsend

TAPPING THE STATE’S General Fund to the tune of $24.5 million to fund increased operating expenses has been requested by Department of Fish and Wildlife staffers and approved by the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission.

It was the first meeting for two new Commission members, Molly Linville of Douglas County and James R. Anderson of Buckley in Pierce County, who joined five other commission members to approve the department’s request to seek $24.5 million in increased operating funds, plus $26 million in capital funds, during the 2020 state legislative supplemental session.

The department decided not to ask for hikes to fishing and hunting license fees this time around after state lawmakers declined to pass a 15 percent hike last spring.

Out of this $24.5 million request, $11.4 million would cover “maintenance level requests” and 80 percent of that total covers unfunded increases passed on by the legislature. These increases include “cost of living increases that were not backed by revenue, attorney general costs, enforcement records management system and other unavoidable cost increases.”

The bulk is COLAs not backed by revenue, according to Nate Pamplin, Fish and Wildlife’s director of Budget and Government Affairs.

Another $6.6 million would keep current service levels and prevent cuts to the following: Fishing and Hatchery Production ($2 million); wildlife conflict response ($956K); conservation ($742K); hunting ($672K); Columbia River Salmon and Steelhead ($659K); shellfish and public health ($553K); land management ($578K) and customer service ($410K).

The department said new funding is needed to reduce humpback whale entanglement in industrial crab pots ($172K), salmon fisheries monitoring on Puget Sound ($2.4M) with a focus on the Nisqually and Skagit rivers; a total of $1.7M for hydraulic project approval to assist property owners in protecting fish; sea lion management on the Columbia River ($830K) for the reduction in the number of sea lions preying on Columbia River salmon and to fund a second year of work to implement the Governor’s Southern Resident Orca Task Force recommendations.

The request now heads to the state Office of Financial Management and would need to be part of proposed budgets offered by the governor’s office or a legislator, and approved by lawmakers before signed into law.

Fishing guide logbooks

The commission also adopted rules that will require fishing guides to report their fishing activities on a monthly basis beginning Jan. 1.

Fishing guides will provide Fish and Wildlife with information on the date and location of each guided fishing trip, the number of anglers onboard and the number and type of fish species caught per trip.

The department said this information will help clarify the role the guide industry plays not only in terms of helping recreational anglers to access fisheries, but also in providing economic benefits to local and state economies.

Area 9 still open

A reminder that hatchery chinook retention continues in Marine Area 9 (Admiralty Inlet) through Friday. State catch estimates placed Marine Area 9 at 84 percent of its 3,491 hatchery chinook quota as of Monday.

The state will evaluate catch estimates and decide if quota remains for any further hatchery chinook openings today or Friday.

Audubon field trip

The Dungeness River Audubon Center in Sequim will host a free walking field trip to see local birds starting at 8 a.m. Friday.

Attendees should bring binoculars.

The center is located inside Railroad Bridge Park, 2151 W. Hendrickson Road.

For more information call John Gatchet at 503-781-5043.

Medicinal plants

A Wild Edible and Medicinal Plants Class will be offered in Sequim by the Dungeness River Audubon Center on Saturday from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Instructor Nancy Slick will lead a wild walkabout to see and learn about the multitude of useful plants that lushly populate our northwest landscape.

Attendees should wear comfortable shoes and bring something for note taking.

The class is $35.

Slick is an attorney, writer, potter and wild edible and medicinal plants teacher in the Sequim area. She has been a plants consultant for the National Geographic television network and has taught foraging in King, Pierce, Jefferson, Clallam and Kitsap counties, including for Peninsula College.

To sign up or for information, call 360-681-4076.

Anglers meet Tuesday

Port of Port Townsend Commissioner Steve Tucker will provide an update on the Port and answer questions at Tuesday’s meeting of the East Jefferson Chapter of Puget Sound Anglers.

The group will meet in the Port of Port Townsend Commissioners Office, 333 Benedict Street in Port Townsend.

The meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. with socializing and fish stories.

Refreshments will be served and the public is invited.

The public can also drop by the group’s booth at the Jefferson County Fair in Port Townsend Friday through Sunday.


Sports reporter Michael Carman can be contacted at 360-417-3525 or mcarman@peninsuladailynews.com.

More in Sports

Tommy Post, part of a group basing at Sunland, tees off on the first hole of Peninsula Golf Club during Friday's session of the Clallam County Amateur Championship tournament.
AREA SPORTS: Clallam Amateur underway

Wrestling camp starts Wednesday in Port Angeles

Wilder Jr.. batter Hunter Stratford takes his turn at bat in the third innning against Sting AAA on Thursday at Volunteer Field in Port Angeles.
LEGION BASEBALL: Wilder Junior drops doubleheader

Senior opens with shutout at Lakeside tournament

Enumclaw's Tim Harder caught this chinook while fishing off of Neah Bay.
King limit rising Saturday off Neah Bay, La Push

ANGLERS CAN RETAIN two kings while fishing off Neah Bay or La… Continue reading

Lonnie Archibald/for Peninsula Daily News
Former Seattle Seahawks special teams captain and current coach Neiko Thorpe instructs athletes during a football camp held recently at Spartan Stadium. Some 68 participants from Forks, Neah Bay, Hoquiam and Montesano turned out for the camp. Thorpe is married to Forks native Maegan Leppell.
AREA SPORTS: Everton soccer camp in Sequim

Jefferson County fall youth soccer registration open through Aug. 3

LEFTIES: Haggerty blast boosts Port Angeles in 3-2 win

Three-run homer Haggerty’s first bomb of the summer

Jeremy Giesegh of the Port Angeles Lefties, playing first base, tags a Bellingham runner during a pickoff attempt Sunday at Civic Field. Giesegh, who is batting .373, was selected to the North team for the West Coast League's first All-Star game since 2019. The game will be played in Bellingham. (Dave Logan/for Peninsula Daily News)
PORT ANGELES LEFTIES: Slugger Giesegh named to WCL All-Star team

Cal State, San Bernardino product is leading entire league with .373 batting average

Leftie Yahir Ramirez, pinch-running for Travis Helm, tries to get back to first base on a pickoff move by the Bellingham Bells. The ball sailed into foul territory which resulted in a two-base throwing error. Ramirez ended up scoring from third base on a fly out. (Dave Logan/for Peninsula Daily News)