FISH AND BOAT COMMISSION
[58 PA. CODE CHS. 63 AND 65]
Sale, Purchase or Barter of Fish Parts and Fish Eggs; Miscellaneous Special Regulation
[29 Pa.B. 823]
The Fish and Boat Commission (Commission) proposes to add § 63.42 (relating to sale, purchase or barter of fish parts and fish eggs) and amend § 65.24 (relating to miscellaneous special regulations). The Commission is publishing these amendments as a notice of proposed rulemaking under the authority of 30 Pa.C.S. (relating to Fish and Boat Code) (code). The proposed amendments deal with fishing.
A. Effective Date
The proposed amendments, if approved on final rulemaking, will go into effect upon publication of an order adopting the amendments in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
B. Contact Person
For further information on the proposed changes, contact Laurie E. Shepler, Assistant Counsel, (717) 657-4546, P. O. Box 67000, Harrisburg, PA 17106-7000. This proposal is available electronically through the Commission's Web site (http://www.fish.state.pa.us).
C. Statutory Authority
The proposed amendments are published under the statutory authority of section 2102 of the code (relating to rules and regulations).
D. Purpose and Background
The proposed amendments are designed to update, modify and improve Commission regulations relating to fishing. The specific purpose of each amendment is described in more detail under the summary of proposal.
E. Summary of Proposal
(1) Section 63.42 (relating to sale, purchase or barter of fish parts and fish eggs). The Commission recently received inquiries as to whether it is legal to sell fish parts and fish eggs. The principal focus of these inquiries has been on the sale of steelhead eggs taken from Lake Erie and its tributaries. Various groups and individuals have expressed the belief that the taking and killing of these sportfish for purpose of selling their eggs is inappropriate.
It has been the Commission staff's position that the sale, offer for sale or purchase of fish, fish parts and fish eggs by anglers is prohibited by section 3311 of the code (relating to sale of certain fish prohibited). There are limited exceptions to this general rule for species authorized to be taken by holders of Lake Erie commercial fishing licenses. In addition, holders of live bait fish, live fish bait and live fish dealers licenses may sell or purchase certain species (not including steelhead) of live fish.
To clarify the interpretation of existing law and enhance its enforceability, the Commission proposes an amendment to its general fishing regulations.
(2) Section 65.24 (relating to miscellaneous special regulations). For some years, portions of Paden (Finley) Creek and Linesville Creek, Crawford County, have had miscellaneous special regulations in effect during the walleye run each spring. During a recent review of this regulation, Commission staff noted that clarification is necessary to protect walleye in these rather small streams during the spawning season. Linesville Creek flows into Pymatuning Sanctuary while Paden (Finley) Creek enters the main lake north of Clark Island. Both streams are conducive to poaching activity (including spearing) when walleye are running.
The Commission believes that it is appropriate to declare portions of both streams as nursery waters under § 67.1 (relating to nursery waters and exhibition areas) and to close them to all fishing during the period March 1 through April 15. This will provide adequate protection to walleye stocks. The designation will apply to the reach of Paden (Finley) Creek from the mouth upstream to ''Finley Bridge'' on State Route 6 and to Linesville Creek from the mouth (Pymatuning Sanctuary) upstream to the Conrail Railroad bridge north of State Route 6 in Linesville. Furthermore, the nursery water designation will prohibit spearing or gigging, or both, on these streams during the March 1 through April 15 period as a further measure to protect walleye during the spawning run. This designation makes unnecessary the current special regulation prohibiting spear fishing during the walleye run each spring when Finley and Linesville Creeks are so posted. Therefore, the Commission proposes to remove both streams from miscellaneous special regulation under § 65.24.
The proposed amendments will not increase paperwork and will create no new paperwork requirements.
G. Fiscal Impact
The proposed amendments will have no adverse fiscal impact on the Commonwealth or its political subdivisions. The proposed amendments will impose no new costs on the private sector or the general public.
H. Public Comments
Interested persons are invited to submit written comments, objections or suggestions about the proposed amendments to the Executive Director, Fish and Boat Commission, P. O. Box 67000, Harrisburg, PA 17106-7000, within 30 days of publication of this notice in the Pennsylvania Bulletin. Comments submitted by facsimile will not be accepted.
Comments also may be submitted electronically at ''firstname.lastname@example.org.'' A subject heading of the proposal and a return name and address must be included in each transmission. If an acknowledgment of electronic comments is not received by the sender within 2 working days, the comments should be retransmitted to ensure receipt.
PETER A. COLANGELO
Fiscal Note: 48A-91. No fiscal impact; (8) recommends adoption.
TITLE 58. RECREATION
PART II. FISH AND BOAT COMMISSION
Subpart B. FISHING
CHAPTER 63. GENERAL FISHING REGULATIONS
§ 63.42. Sale, purchase or barter of fish parts and fish eggs.
It is unlawful for a person to sell, purchase, offer for sale or barter any fish parts or fish eggs obtained from fish taken from the waters of this Commonwealth, including boundary waters. This prohibition does not apply to fish parts and fish eggs lawfully taken and sold or offered for sale by holders of commercial fishing licenses under Chapter 29 of the code (relating to special licenses and permits), if the particular species of fish is authorized for taking by commercial licensees. This prohibition does not apply to the sale, purchase, offer for sale or barter of fish parts and fish eggs legally obtained from fish taken lawfully from waters outside this Commonwealth, if the seller or purchaser is able to document the source of the fish parts or fish eggs from lawful sources outside this Commonwealth.
CHAPTER 65. SPECIAL FISHING REGULATIONS
§ 65.24. Miscellaneous special regulations.
The following waters are subject to the following miscellaneous special regulations:
Name of County Water Special Regulations * * * * *
[Crawford Finley and Linesville Creeks Spearing fish is prohibited during the Walleye run each spring when these streams are so posted.] * * * * *
[Pa.B. Doc. No. 99-228. Filed for public inspection February 12, 1999, 9:00 a.m.]
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