[acn-l] ~~> FISHLINK SUBLEGALS 3/31/00 <~~ (fwd)

peter.unmack at asu.edu
Mon, 03 Apr 2000 11:32:04 -0700 (MST)

From: FISH1IFR at aol.com
Date: Mon, 3 Apr 2000 14:19:11 EDT
Subject: ~~> FISHLINK SUBLEGALS 3/31/00 <~~
To: AFS at wyoming.com, ACN-L at pinetree.org, crab-l at ios.bc.ca,
FishingForum at onelist.com, fishhabitat at mail.orst.edu,
oceancoalition at onelist.com, salmon at nw1.riverdale.k12.or.us

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~~> FISHLINK SUBLEGALS 3/31/00 <~~
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A WEEKLY QUOTA OF FISHERY SHORTS CAUGHT AND
LANDED BY THE INSTITUTE FOR FISHERIES RESOURCES
AND THE PACIFIC COAST FEDERATION OF FISHERMEN'S
ASSOCIATIONS

VOL 1, NO. 13 31 March 2000
<<>><<>><<>><<>><<>><<>><<>><<>><<>><<>><<>><<>>><<

FISHERMEN SUE TO REMOVE ELK CREEK DAM: PCFFA, IFR
and four other fishing and conservation groups filed suit in federal court
on 30 March to remove Oregon's Elk Creek Dam as a violation of Section
9 of the Endangered Species Act. On a tributary of Oregon's Rogue River,
the dam was only one-third built by the Corps before a court-ordered halt
in 1987, blocks migration of ESA listed coho. Elk Creek was one of three
dams authorized in 1962 as a result of Congressional efforts to provide
flood control and irrigation. Two were built -- the Lost Creek and
Applegate dams -- but after review of the needs by the Corps and the
Bureau of Reclamation, the Elk Creek Dam was deemed no longer
necessary as well as costing more than any benefits it could provide.
Nevertheless, as a result of an appropriations rider by then Senator Mark
Hatfield, construction of the dam began anyway in 1986. Since 1992, the
corps has run a "trap and haul" mitigation program by sucking fish out of
the stream and trucking them around the dam. However, mitigation efforts
cost more in three years than would unblocking the river by "notching" the
dam. Agency estimates also place the cost of lost salmon runs destroyed
by the dam at approximately $1 million/year.

Last October, NMFS wrote the corps complaining that the mitigation
program is "grossly inadequate" for long-term passage of coho and
steelhead trout around the dam. But the corps had come to that conclusion
already, having abandoned construction plans in 1995 and recommended
breaching in 1997. However, Congressman Greg Walden (Oregon's 2nd
District) and his predecessors have successfully sought appropriations
riders each year to block deconstruction.

The lawsuit was filed in the Portland U.S. District Court by the
Western Environmental Law Center (WELC) for the Institute for Fisheries
Resources, Oregon Natural Resources Council, Oregon Trout, Pacific
Coast Federation of Fishermen's Associations, Rogue Flyfishers and
Waterwatch of Oregon. For more information contact WELC at
(541)485-2471.

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA REALTOR APPOINTED
COMMISSIONER TO PSMFC: California Governor Gray Davis
appointed Martin N Basch, 44, of Rancho Palos Verdes and owner of
Re-Max Palos Verdes Realty as a California commissioner to the Pacific
States Marine Fisheries Commission. From 1983-1993, Basch, was the
owner of a seafood brokerage and importing firm. Also appointed to fill
the other two California commission slots on the five-state body were
California Fish & Game Director Robert Hight and State Senator Dede
Alpert (D-San Diego). Alpert is the former chair of the Pacific Fisheries
Legislative Task Force and a member of the California Legislature's Joint
Committee on Fisheries & Aquaculture. For more information, contact:
L.B. Boydstun, California Department of Fish & Game at (916) 653-6281.

USFWS - PSMFC AGREEMENT TO ASSIST SEABIRD
DETERRENTS FOR LONGLINERS; THORN SMITH CITED BY
USFWS FOR EXEMPLARY EFFORT IN SEABIRD CONSERVATION:
On 17 March, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) and the Pacific
States Marine Fisheries Commission (PSMFC) signed an agreement
providing $400,000 to assist longline fishing vessels install seabird
deterrent devices to reduce the take of seabirds in the fishing gear,
especially endangered short-tailed albatross, in the Bering Sea and
North Pacific. The longline industry will contribute more than $600,000
in cost-sharing toward this effort, resulting in the installation of the
devices on 36 large freezer longline vessels as well as on approximately
half of the fleet of 2,000 smaller longliners.

In the effort to reduce seabird bycatch by longliners, USFWS cited
Thorn Smith, Executive Director of the North Pacific Longline
Association, for his "exemplary efforts to promote seabird conservation in
the commercial fishing industry." Over the past four years Smith brought
together representatives of the fishing industry, NMFS, USFWS and the
University of Washington Sea Grant Program to develop, implement and
test the use of seabird deterrent devices, and to educate all parties about
seabird bycatch issues. He spearheaded the development of draft
regulations requiring the use of deterrent devices then proposed those
regulations to the North Pacific Fishery Management Council for
approval, recognizing that without the regulations both the short-tailed
albatross and the continuation of the longline fishery were at risk. Smith
credited Ed Melvin with UW's Sea Grant Program for much of the success
of the deterrent project. For more information, contact the North Pacific
Longline Association at (206) 282-4639.

PFMC MEETS IN PORTLAND TO SELECT SALMON SEASON
RECOMMENDATION: The Pacific Fishery Management Council will
meet in Portland during the week of 3-7 April. At the top of this regional
council's agenda will be the selection of a 2000 salmon season package for
the commercial and sport fisheries offshore California, Oregon and
Washington. For more information, visit the PFMC's website at:
http://www.pcouncil.org.

CLEAN WATER ACT VICTORY ON SNAKE RIVER: In a suit
brought by IFR, PCFFA and several other groups last year, on 21 March
Portland US Federal District Court Judge Frye ruled that the four Lower
Snake River dams must comply with Washington State water quality
standards for both temperature and dissolved nitrogen. Washington has
assumed Clean Water Act authority by delegation from EPA. Maximum
water temperatures allowed in the reservoirs under state water quality
standards is 20 degrees Centigrade (~68 F) but these standards are
substantially exceeded for several weeks of the year. Likewise state
dissolved gas standards are also routinely exceeded in dam operations.
Both elevated temperature and excessive dissolved nitrogen can be fatal to
fish, and even temporary spikes can greatly increase mortality. The Judge
left the Plaintiff's motion for summary judgment in abeyance, however,
for 90 days in order to review the voluminous administrative recover and
take further evidence. Various jurisdictional and standing objections
by the Corps and various upriver users who intervened were dismissed,
clearing the way for a trial on all the remaining issues. The Nez Perce
Tribe of Idaho also intervened as a plaintiff, and the State of Oregon filed
an Amicus brief in support of the plaintiffs. For further information
contact Earthjustice Legal Defense Fund, Seattle Office, (206)343-7340.

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR SOUGHT FOR FSOS: For the Sake of the
Salmon (FSOS) is seeking an executive director to lead the three state
(California, Oregon, Washington) organization whose mission is to
restore salmon to levels that ensure healthy, sustainable natural
populations and support productive fisheries. FSOS's members include
the three states, federal agencies, Indian tribes, local governments,
commercial fishing (including PCFFA), sport fishing, conservation, and
timber and agricultural organizations. The FSOS office is located in
Portland. FSOS first executive director, former Oregon State Senator Bill
Bradbury was recently appointed Oregon Secretary of State by Governor
John Kitzhaber. For more information on the position contact the Pacific
States Marine Fisheries Commission at (503) 650-5400. The deadline for
applications is 21 April.

DAM REMOVAL AND REFORM MEASURES MOVING IN
CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE; AUBURN DAM FINALLY DEAD,
DEAD, DEAD? On 28 March, SB 1540 by California State Senator
Byron Sher, that would mandate a study and develop a program for the
removal of antiquated and silted-in dams in that state, cleared its first
policy committee in the State Legislature (Sublegals, 18 February 2000).
This measure is sponsored by Friends of the River and PCFFA. In the
California Assembly, AB 1956 by Assemblymember Fred Keeley, that
calls for a state purchase of Pacific Gas & Electric's (PG&E) hydropower
system, "cleaning it up", including making it fish friendly and then selling
the elements into the deregulated power market, is to be heard on 3 April
before the Assembly Natural Resources Committee. This measure is
supported by PCFFA and a coalition of rural counties, major water
districts, consumer and conservation organizations.

In the meantime, E&E Newsline reported on 23 March that federal
official will undo rather than restart construction of California's barely
started Auburn Dam on the American River. Bureau of Reclamation
Regional Director Lester Snow announced the agency will seal a half-mile
tunnel diverting water from the North Fork of the American River near
Sacramento. The tunnel was dug to ease construction of the dam,
which was authorized in 1965 but barely got off the ground before it was
halted largely for environmental reasons. For more information, visit
E&E's website at: http://www.eenews.net.

CALIFORNIA FISH & GAME COMMISSION TO TAKE UP
NEARSHORE AND SPOT PRAWN FISHING REGULATIONS AT
SACRAMENTO MEETING: The California Fish & Game Commission
will meet 6-7 April in Sacramento to consider receive testimony on spot
prawn fishery observer fee, nearshore fish traps, and reports on an
ecological reserve proposal for the Channel Islands and the status of listed
winter-run and spring-run chinook salmon. For more information, visit
the Commission's website at: http://www.dfg.ca.gov/fg_comm/.

NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE SEEKS CANDIDATES
TO WORK IN THEIR SALMON RECOVERY PROGRAM: The
Southwest Regional office of the National Marine Fisheries Service
(NMFS) has openings in their salmon recovery program to work on
Endangered Species Act consultation. For more information visit their
web site at: http:// www.usajobs.opm.gov/a9noaa.htm

SERIOUS OVERSIGHT IN CALIFORNIA'S OIL SPILL RESPONSE
PROGRAM EXPOSED: In a news release on 15 February 2000 the
Center for Marine Conservation chronicled a sad state of affairs for the oil
spill response industry. California's oil spill response law and regulations
require unannounced oil spill drills to test the capabilities of oil spill
response contractors. The first drill, in the ten years that these rules have
been in place, was called last October and the Oil Response contractor
refused to respond until the state had paid all of its costs. Warner Chabot
of the CMC made a good analogy for the situation when he compared
it to a fire department that had to rent a truck and hire firemen before
responding to a 911 call. There is too much to lose along our coasts to
take such risks. There will be a State Legislative Oversight Hearing on
this issue on Tuesday 18 April from 10 am to 1 pm at the Bay Model,
2100 Bridgeway, Sausalito. For more information contact the CMC at
(415) 391-6204.

NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE OFFERS FEDERAL
FISHERIES FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE: The National Marine Fisheries
Service (NMFS) announced on 27 March, their intention to make $23.7
million in loans available for federal fisheries. The priorities for these
monies will be 1) fishing capacity reduction, 2) supporting the existing
FFP credit portfolio through loan refinancing, etc., 3) about $10
million in backlogged 1999 applications, and 4) marine and closed system
aquaculture. If the entire amount is not allocated among these priorities
by 17 April 2000, non-priority purposes will be funded. For more
information visit the website: http://www.noaa.gov.

GOT NEWS?: Submit news items to Molly Thomas, Editor at:
ifrfish at aol.com or call the IFR office with the news and a source at
either: (415) 561-FISH (Southwest Office) or (541) 689-2000 (Northwest
Office).

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