How to participate

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) offers several ways to provide input on proposed rules.

Rules are codified under the Washington Administrative Code (WAC). The department accepts public input throughout the rule-making process. For example, before WDFW begins the process of changing sportfishing or hunting rules, the agency might:

  • Hold public workshops;
  • Form advisory committees; and
  • Seek public input to help formulate its proposals.

WDFW then offers a formal public comment period for each rule-proposal project once it files a notice of proposed rule making, or CR-102, with the Office of the Code Reviser. WDFW posts CR-102s on its website promptly after filing, and they are also published in the Washington State Register. CR-102s include information for submitting comments on proposed rules, and they provide the time, date, and location of Fish and Wildlife Commission meetings where the public can testify about proposed rule changes.

When you comment on a rule during the formal public comment period or at a Commission meeting, the comments become part of the public record. The Commission takes these comments into consideration when deciding whether to adopt rules as proposed or to revise the rules if appropriate. Everyone who comments on a proposed rule will get a copy of the department's official response.

In addition to this process, WDFW encourages the public to make recommendations and share ideas for rule making.

The public can also petition the Fish and Wildlife Commission to change or reconsider a rule. The petition process is more formal; See RCW 34.05.330 for more information on petitions. If you would like to go forward with a formal petition, you can download the form from the Office of Financial Management.

Hearings Schedule

See current rule-making activity for more information on rules that may be scheduled for a hearing in the future or rules that have been filed for permanent adoption.