WASHINGTON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE
NEWS RELEASE
600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091

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July 18, 2003
Contact: Bill Tweit, WDFW - (360) 902-2723
Margaret Ainscough, WDFW - (360) 902-2408
Anne Pressentin, ODFW - (503) 872-5264, ext. 5356
Neal Coenen, ODFW - (503) 872-5252, Ext. 5392

Washington and Oregon seek nominations to Columbia River fisheries advisory committees

Fisheries managers in Washington and Oregon are seeking nominations from interested individuals to create two committees that will advise them on Columbia River sport and commercial fishery management matters. Nominations are due Friday, Aug. 15, 2003.

The Columbia River Recreational Fishing Advisory Group and the Columbia River Commercial Fishing Advisory Group will each have up to 15 members. The groups will meet three to four times per year to discuss issues affecting salmon, steelhead, sturgeon and smelt fisheries. Issues include stable and viable fishing opportunities, fishery management plans, ways to minimize sport/commercial gear conflict, and, for the commercial group, creation and implementation of a marketing plan.

The Washington and Oregon fish and wildlife departments had Columbia River fishery advisory committees in the past, but they have not been active for several years. The directors of both departments decided to re-create the advisory committees to provide a more defined and formalized structure for receiving public input and to ensure that all aspects of emerging issues are analyzed and heard by fishery managers. Members will be expected to provide input through the North of Falcon season planning process, Columbia River Compact commercial fishing hearings and joint state sport fishing hearings.

The committee members will be chosen by Oregon and Washington's fish and wildlife directors to represent either the recreational or commercial fishing interests in both states. The final membership is expected to reflect all sectors of the two industries such as sport and commercial fishers, charters/guides, processors, equipment suppliers, retailers and ports. Occasionally, the two groups will meet together.

Any group or individual may submit a nomination. Nominations should include the following information: A resume with contact information and a statement that describes the nominee's fishing experience, interest in being on the committee and ability to communicate with regional constituents. Persons nominating someone other than themselves also should include their own contact information.

Nominations should be sent to Deb Kuttel, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, 600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501, or faxed to (360) 902-2158.