Commission meets March 16 meeting in Salem
The Fish and Wildlife Commission will meet at ODFW Headquarters, 4034 Fairview Industrial Drive SE, Salem on Friday March 16 beginning at 8 a.m.
The agenda is posted at dfw.state.or.us/agency/commission/minutes/18/03_Mar/index.asp
On Thursday March 15, Commissioners will tour the lower Willamette River. Members of the public can join the tour beginning at 10:15 a.m. at Sport Craft Landing in Oregon City, but later portions of the tour are not open to the public. See the agenda for details.
At Friday’s meeting, ODFW staff will recommend the Commission ban alcohol at Sauvie Island Wildlife Area (SIWA) from May 1-Sept. 30 annually. Over the past several years, the Oregon State Police has documented an increase in alcohol-related problems at SIWA beaches, despite increased law enforcement, including saturation patrols. Last year between April 1 and Aug. 3, 17 individuals were arrested for DUII as they travelled away from Sauvie Island beaches, and 36 percent of all DUII arrests in Columbia County by OSP troopers during that time were those travelling from SIWA beaches.
Wildlife area management and OSP believe that an alcohol ban during the summer months will significantly reduce alcohol-related problems, plus need for additional law enforcement and emergency medical personnel. Sauvie Island residents showed support for this proposal when ODFW hosted a public meeting on the issue in February.
In other business, the Commission will be asked to:
- Consider fishery management changes to the recreational abalone fishery. ODFW will recommend a three-year closure while staff re-assess the stock which is currently imperiled by low densities, poor environmental conditions, and increasing fishery pressure. The 2018 season was closed by emergency rule, at the beginning of the year, however this would expire in June without Commission action.
- Approve Access and Habitat (A&H) funding for a new Coos Mtn Access Area to provide public hunting access in the Tioga Unit.
- Approve A&H grants to improve wildlife habitat and appoint a Chair to the A&H board.
- Approve funding for several Restoration and Enhancement projects which improve facilities for anglers, or help fund improved fish passage and fish research.
Commissioners will also hear an informational briefing on planning for the 2018 ocean salmon fishery, though regulations for this federally guided fishery will not be adopted until next month’s meeting in Astoria. Finally, Commissioners will hear from ODFW staff and an invited guest panel about 2017 fisheries on the Columbia River.
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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