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

September 25, 1996
Contact: Jeff Weathersby, 360-902-2256

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Commission to discuss salmon, razor clam and elk issues

TACOMA -- Washington's declining salmon and steelhead stocks, the incidental catch of untargeted fish and other animals, and razor clams will highlight the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission's public study sessions for Friday and Saturday.

The commission will begin meeting at 8 a.m. Friday in the Olympian and Echo rooms at the La Quinta Inn in Tacoma at 1425 E. 27th St.

Friday's session ends at 5:30 p.m. The Saturday session also begins at 8 a.m.

Friday's agenda includes:

  • A status report and commission discussion on the effort by the Department of Fish and Wildlife and other state agencies and tribes to develop a Wild Salmonid Policy that will serve as the roadmap to rebuilding salmon and steelhead stocks.

  • A staff briefing on the department's proposed management plan for elk.

  • A discussion of how animal species may be added to the list of the state's Endangered Species Act. Commissioners also will discuss which species may be removed from the list.

Saturday's agenda includes:

  • A discussion of fish bycatch issues. The 8 a.m. session will provide an opportunity for the public to discuss with department staff the incidental catch of unwanted fish and other animals during fisheries. There will be follow-up discussion with staff and commissioner on development of a bycatch policy.

  • A briefing on proposed razor clam season changes for this fall.

Because these are study sessions, no official actions are expected to be taken. Public testimony will occur at later meetings as a prelude to commission decision making.