OLYMPIA – Fisheries managers for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) will hold a public meeting in Raymond to discuss the development of a salmon-fishery management plan specific to Willapa Bay.
The meeting is scheduled Tuesday, Jan. 22 from 6-8 p.m. at the Raymond Elks Lodge, 326 Third St.
The management plan proposed by the department would outline clear objectives for all commercial and recreational salmon fisheries in Willapa Bay, said Kirt Hughes, regional fish program manager for WDFW. Commercial and recreational fishing schedules, season options and resource protection needs for 2008 and beyond will be included in the plan.
“The meeting is designed to give people a chance to discuss all the options in the Willapa Bay region before the fishing season is determined,” Hughes said. “Public participation is critical in the development of the fisheries management plan.”
Members of the public who are interested in Willapa Bay salmon fisheries — including coastal legislators, representatives of fishing organizations and individual anglers — are encouraged to attend the meeting and offer their ideas, Hughes said.
“This is an opportunity to help create a salmon-management plan for Willapa Bay,” Hughes said. “We want to hear what people have to say.”
Hughes also stated that this meeting is in addition to the annual North of Falcon salmon-season setting process and information gathered regarding Willapa Bay will be used during that process. Information about the North of Falcon meetings, to be held in March and April, will be available soon on the WDFW website at http://wdfw.wa.gov/.