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Kevin, Welcome to the crowd of perplexed. Even when the Columbia was shut down to sportsmen the gillnetters would have their season. It may have been under the guise of a "sturgeon" season but salmon were incidental. Gillnetters have wisely hung onto their permits over the lean years inh hopes that a turnaround would increase the value of their permits. Buyouts have been discussed over the years also but never really seriously considered.

I have never been able to understand why a certain group of elite people can harvest a public resource that is owned by everyone and pay only a small fee to the state for the privilege.

I have no problem with commercial sale of salmon except for the method used to harvest. Time marches on and the dams have drastically changed the way fish are managed and should also determine how they are harvested. I have heard people on this board actually favor returning to the fishwheel! Why would anyone want to return to the one method responsible for nearly wiping out the runs entirely. The fish can be safely harvested at the ladders with no harm to untagged salmon.

Gillnetting is like buffalo hunting and should be given the same fate. Buy them out, let them harvest their historic "quotas' at the dam or whatever, but give that antiquated method the fate it deserves. I watched Dudley Nelson Sr. and a few other old timers fight the fight years ago at commission hearings with little or no support from the angling community. Commercials used to shout them down and make subtle remarks to them but they hung in, year after year. Hope someday it will change.

[ 04-28-2003, 10:21 AM: Message edited by: Capt. Hook ]
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