California Sportfish Issue Timeline
In June of 2016, a coalition of groups made a petition to the California Fish and Game Commission that appeared to be aimed at helping salmon in the Sacremento-San Joaquin Delta and its tributaries. In reality, it was smoke and mirrors.
To “save salmon,” the proposal called for changing the size and bag limits for black (smallmouth and largemouth) and striped bass. Their plan was to paint bass as “invasive species” and fish them out. In fact, they were trying to distract the Commission from the real problem – water.
Striped, largemouth, and smallmouth bass have coexisted with salmon in California for over a hundred years. Smallmouth were introduced in 1874, stripers in 1879, and largemouth in 1891. Clearly, these sportfish were being made scapegoats for water interests.
Faced with opposition from a coalition of pro-fishing groups and anglers across the country, the petition was withdrawn just days before the scheduled hearing.
Below is a timeline of the events that led to this big win for fish and fishermen.
Timeline of Events
August 23, 2016
Proposal withdrawn just days ahead of the scheduled meeting.
August 9, 2016
A coalition of groups including the American Sportfishing Association, B.A.S.S., California Sportfishing League, Coastal Conservation Association California, Coastside Fishing Club, Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation, Fishing League Worldwide, the National Marine Manufacturers Association, and Water4Fish sent a joint letter opposing Petition 2016-011
August 4, 2016
Keep America Fishing, along with a coalition of like-minded groups, launched an online campaign to defeat this nonsensical proposal. Using the latest technology, the groups reached out to anglers in California and across the country via email, websites, discussion forums, and social media.
June 14, 2016
The California Fish and Game Commission verified receipt of the petition and assigned it Petition number 2016-011.
June 10, 2016
The Coalition for Sustainable Delta, California Chamber of Commerce, California Farm Bureau Federation, Kern County Water Agency, Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, Northern California Water Association, San Joaquin Tributaries Authority, Southern California Water Committee, State Water Contractors and Western Growers submitted their petition to the California Fish and Game Commission.