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home Archives, Washington Fishing News Gov. Jay Inslee announced the reopening of sports fishing in Washington beginning May 5th 2020

Gov. Jay Inslee announced the reopening of sports fishing in Washington beginning May 5th 2020

Today Governor Jay Inslee announced the partial reopening of Washington’s sport fishery. This came as a result of significant political pressure from several protests throughout the state. The latest of these protest known as the “Let Us Fish rally” lead by Tim Eyman. had the streets lined with fishing enthusiasts holding signs demanding the reopening. Several trucks were also pulling boats down the street as well with signs calling for the end of the closures. When asked about the announcement Tim Eyman said “Inslee buckled due to the protests”

During his speech Inslee had defiantly change his tune compared to his last press conference. During that conference Inslee extended the stay in place order and stressed the importance of isolation to combat the COVID19 epidemic. However Inlsee had allowed recreational boating, jet skiing and kayaking continue. IN his speas today Inslee said. “Outdoor recreation is one of the best things we can do to promote physical, mental and emotional well-being for Washingtonians during a time of great stress and isolation, springtime in our state is Washington at its best and people want to be out enjoying outdoor activities in a safe and responsible way.”



In response to Eyman’s claim that Inslee caved. Inslee pushed back “Fishing and outdoor recreation were always going to be among the first things to reopen,” his office said.

“The things we’re doing, by necessity have criticism and controversy, they’re very difficult for people. It’s really hard isolating, it’s really hard being out of work,” Inslee said. “But no one is proposing a date to reopen the state that I’ve heard, they just kind of harp on our plans.”

Inslee also indicated that “If we see a sharp uptake in the number of people who are getting sick or are not following appropriate steps, then we won’t hesitate to scale this back again. This is not a return to normal. This is only a beginning phase of relaxing outdoor recreation restrictions.”

Still even with this new relaxing of stay at home order, closures for public gatherings, events, team sports and camping, among other things, will not be resuming at this time.

Anglers in the state defiantly welcome the reopening of the fishing season, however, there will still be several restrictions in place. According to Kelly Cunningham, director of the fish program for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. Coastal beaches will remain closed to shellfish harvests, and coastal fisheries will still be shut down for rockfish, halibut and other species. Also Puget Sound, fisheries for halibut, shrimp and intertidal shellfish will be off-limits. In addition the reopening comes too late to revive a north Puget Sound winter salmon season for blackmouth chinook that was scheduled to run only through April 30.












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