The Washington State Senate Natural Resources & Parks Committee will hold a hearing on July 29, 2014 at 10:00AM to discuss the recent Puget Sound steelhead hatchery litigation and settlement with Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) and Wild Fish Conservancy. The hearing was called by the committee chair, Senator Kirk Pearson (R – Monroe) and Wild Fish Conservancy was invited to provide their perspective. The hearing will also include presentations from WDFW, Puget Sound Tribes, NOAA Fisheries, recreational fishers, and fishing businesses. This is a golden opportunity to tell the Committee that you support rivers managed for wild fish, not hatchery fish. There is finally momentum for significant hatchery reform in Washington!
When: July 29, 2014 at 10:00 am
Where: Senate Hearing Rm 1
J.A. Cherberg Building
304 15th Ave SW
Olympia, WA 98501
After the settlement, Senator Pearson authored an op-ed in the Everett Herald that characterized the Wild Fish Conservancy as “a bully” (you can read it here), and at his hearing there may be NO other invited speakers voicing support for wild steelhead. But there will be time for public input – your chance to show state legislators your support for wild steelhead recovery, and so it is crucial that you show up, stand up, and speak up for rivers managed for wild steelhead.
Our partners at the Wild Fish Conservancy office will be coordinating ride sharing, so if you need a ride or can provide space in your vehicle, please contact their office at 425-788-1167.
Their recent settlement is a huge win for wild steelhead in Puget Sound. Most releases of Chambers Creek hatchery steelhead will cease and they can only resume if NOAA approves each specific hatchery program after a scientific review. The settlement also established a twelve-year moratorium of steelhead hatchery plants in the Skagit River system, Puget Sound’s largest and most important wild steelhead river. This is by far the biggest win of its kind on the entire coast. It is on-the-ground and working now, and the immense benefits for wild steelhead recovery are immediate.
Thank you again for standing with WILD steelhead and science-based policy!