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600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091

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October 23, 2017
Contact: Commission Office, 360-902-2267

Public can comment on Baker Lake fishery,
Cascades land purchase at commission meeting

OLYMPIA – The Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission will invite public comments at a meeting Oct. 27-28 in Olympia on issues ranging from the summer sockeye season at Baker Lake to a plan to purchase 142 acres of timberland to improve wildlife habitat in Kittitas County.

The commission, a citizen panel appointed by the governor to set policy for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), will convene both days at 8:30 a.m. in room 172 of the Natural Resource Building at 1111 Washington St. S.E.

A complete agenda is available at

Following a staff briefing, anglers will have an opportunity to comment on the 2017 sockeye season at Baker Lake and the Skagit River. WDFW fishery managers will discuss management of those fisheries, harvest sharing, and possible ways to improve management in the future.

The commission will also invite public comments before taking action on a proposal by WDFW to purchase 142 acres of land in Kittitas County for the Heart of the Cascades Project. The goal of that project, which began in 2007, is to secure more than 5,000 acres for wildlife through a partnership between WDFW and the Nature Conservancy.

Other proposals scheduled for action include one designed to clarify the application process to commercially harvest geoduck clams, and another designed to align WDFW rules for buying and selling seafood with a measure approved by the state Legislature earlier this year.

The commission will also receive briefings by WDFW staff on issues that include:

  • Current efforts to control the spread of invasive northern pike in the Columbia River.
  • Proposals developed by WDFW to simplify sportfish rules in 2018-19.
  • Forest restoration in Thurston County at the Scatter Creek Wildlife Area, which was burned by a wildfire in August.

In addition, a representative from the Wild Fish Conservancy will brief the commission on the results of a two-year study of fish traps on the Columbia River.