Walleyes for Tomorrow - Fond Du Lac, WI
The meeting was called to order by President John Durben at 10:05 AM.
Present: Cornell Stroik, Jim Schommer, Gordy Merz, Brenda Rosin-Schaff, George Meyer, Ron Bruch.
Treasurer - Cornell Stroik read the financial report as was published for the meeting. The report showed as of 09/31/13 we had $7,774.50 in the checking account and $3,065.26 C.A.S.T. savings account, for a total of $10,839.76 Cornell stated that we had a good response from clubs contributing to the printing expenses of the kids fishing booklets, which should be approximately $2400.00 for 20,000 copies. Those present acknowledged that American Litho was kind in their invoicing and should be recognized in future booklets by including their logo. A thank you note will follow. A motion was made, seconded and approved to accept the report as published.
C.A.S.T. – no movement
Wisconsin Wildlife Federation - George Meyer, Executive Director & Gordy Merz District 9 Director and Chair of Inland Fisheries
Both gentlemen discussed the board meeting which was held a week prior.
· North Lake Access - DNR position is that we are in a “Cooling Off Period”. THIS DOES NOT END THE LAWSUIT. The project has a long history dating about 20 years and has been the most expensive project discussed with the DNR & a lake association. Currently, the access site location will be off Hwy 83 by the post office, next to the inflow. Many feel this site is limited in size, unsafe in winter, has difficult turning radius for parking and will need to be constantly dredged. CLUBS ARE ENCOURAGED TO KEEP THE PRESSURE ON THE DNR TO GO BACK TO THE NORTHWEST SIDE. The WWF has demanded a meeting with Secretary Kathy Stepp.
· Tournament Fishing – DNR can’t change culling. It’s a statutory issue. Recommendation is to stay with previous resolution. We were reminded & encouraged to buy items at sporting goods stores because the money comes back to our state.
· Assembly Bill #352 (AB352) as amended by #1 Fish Penning–There was a hearing held which only applied to the Great Lakes. Currently there is a long permit process. There is support to go to a general permit if certain conditions are met to streamline the process. This is not to be confused with commercial use. And comes from Door County/Great Lakes mindset for salmon, but applies to walleyes & other species. So far they don’t have perimeters as to size of fish, lake, quantity, etc. There will be a public hearing in the future and look at where it is, will it be limited to certain months, to promote fishing, look at disease issues, etc. WWF supports as amended. WCSFO went on record as being in support of AB 352 as amended by Assembly Amendment 1 as well.
· VHS Update – It’s a cool water disease, so we will be dealing with this a long time vs. warmer water lakes.
· Assembly Bill #380 (AB380) & Senate Bill 329 Sturgeon Transfer Point – Bipartisan support which limits the number of persons to take sturgeon. Must issue according to preference (game species & bear use this system, it’s not unusual). Examples given were #1 – you’re in the hospital during the time frame you are given or #2 current law is Nov. 1st holder may transfer license to minor with a transfer fee, it would change to Oct. 1st. Don’t use a lottery on Winnebago but on the upper lakes.
· Catch & Release Bass Fishing – became part of the budget bill/no hearing.
· Cross Bow Bill – WWF supports (not bow hunters). Passed the Assembly/Amended/Passed Assembly. The bill will more than likely pass regardless of age or ability for the next fall archery season.
· Ground Water – Discussion on how it feeds lakes, rivers, wetlands, trout streams, as we have some drying up. Only applies to new wells. The dairy, manufacturing, veggie & potato growers are trying to get high capacity well law. There is a bill with loopholes to issue permits by parcels. The WWF opposes the current bill but has an alternative to strengthen the law with Bill # . A motion was made, seconded and passed.
How can our members help? Attend the Spring Hearings, especially non-tournament clubs. The social clubs need to become more actively involved. We were also cautioned and encouraged to look into the background or organizations as they relate to conservation and political issues.
DNR Fisheries Report - Ron Bruch, DNR Fisheries Management filled in for Mike Staggs.
He reported on the following topics:
· Walleye Initiative/Extended Growth - There is a major effort being made to raise larger fish & stock them in as many statewide waters as possible. To date they have stocked 400,000 extended growth walleyes in 100 lakes and are writing rules for administering $1 million in grants for tribal and the private sector to grow Extended Growth(E.G.) walleyes. The rules will include who is eligible, how the grants will be awarded within the next 6 months and requirements such as a required minimum of 3 years raising them, how many days to convert current 7- 8 inch walleye to E.G., which lakes will get the E.G. (Restoration Waters, which are in the north and are good natural reproduction ex: Chippewa Flowage & Maintenance Waters). E.G. survive 20% their 1st year verses fingerling which have a 1 out of 100 survival rate and there is no data for fry survival rates. The DNR is focusing on infrastructure of building new & repairing old hatcheries/ponds. They expect to raise 800,000 by Dec. Ron Bruch is responsible for outreach to let people know about the initiative. He wants to know what they/we can do better to promote fishing. They are starting with the stocking project but taking the opportunity to update the public on the Walleye Management Program.
· Ron also briefly mentioned the Warm Water Habitat, Fish Sticks Project, trying to keep the bag limit @3 Walleye statewide.
· Fisheries Advisory Council - He is working with the Wisconsin Conservation Congress and DNR Fisheries Management Team as well as various statewide fishing groups to create the Council, which will be a statewide group. He will be making contacts in December and the first meeting will be held in late January. They will focus on key issues and angler education. They will be redirected to create consistent direct contact with kids and their families, not just for a day of fishing. The focus will be on a social experience in an effort to help with retention & recruitment. A round-table meeting has been scheduled by WDNR Secretary Kathy Stepp on Monday, October 21 in Madison to discuss the Wisconsin Walleye Initiative and the creation and duties of the Fisheries Advisory Council. Ron Burch; WDNR, George Meyer; WWF, and John Durben; WCSFO, will be attending.
· Regulatory- Paired down the list, re-classify waters to recommend changes.
Kids Fishing Clinics - Brenda Rosin-Schaff
Reported that the next clinic meeting date will Dec. 12th at 7p.m. at McCarty Park 8214 West Cleveland Ave. West Allis, WI. The ice fishing clinics will be held on Feb. 8, 2014 and the spring clinics on April 12, 2014 from 9:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. All WCSFO members are encouraged to volunteer at any of the parks. In addition, if your club has access to discounted merchandise or an excess of something we could give to the children, please contact Brenda Rosin- Schaff at 414-467-6658 or Ron Gray at 414-321-0869 and they will help coordinate with the appropriate hosting fishing club.
Kids fishing hand books – An enormous amount of time went into updating the kids fishing booklets by President, John Durben. Thanks to collaborated efforts by him, Ted Lind & Ron Gray for their hard work and dedication to getting it done quickly. The books have been printed and are available for distribution.
· Angler Education Certification – All clubs are encouraged to have their members certified through the DNR for helping at kids fishing clinics. Last March, the Badger Fisherman’s League hosted and invited all clubs to a certification course with Theresa Stabo of the DNR. The event was very successful and they are again offering to host it at the Knights of Columbus 1800 South 92nd Street West Allis, Wi. The tentative date is set for Monday March 17, 2014. If you are interested in participating, contact Brenda Rosin-Schaff 414-467-6658 or Gordy Merz 262-617-3924
· Congratulations to the newest chapter of Walleyes For Tomorrow in Pewaukee on the success of their 1st fundraiser held in October on Pewaukee Lake. Watch for two future fundraisers they have I the works and try to support them.
Meeting Adjourned at Approximately 1:15 PM
The next WCSFO meeting is scheduled for March 15, 2014 at 10:00 A.M. at Gander Mountain 6939 South 27th Street Franklin, WI
Respectfully Submitted: Brenda Rosin-Schaff, Secretary
WDNR Note: 84% of Walleyes currently taken in Wisconsin are from natural reproduction.
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