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ODFW to finalize urban deer control pilot program


The Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission is being asked next week to approve the rules for a new urban deer control pilot program.

The 2017 Oregon Legislature passed SB 373, which called for the development of a pilot program to allow cities to reduce deer populations in areas where high densities of deer are causing damage, health and safety concerns.

Under the proposal, cities would be required to pass an ordinance prohibiting the feeding of deer before ODFW would authorize a pilot program and kill permits. Cities participating would be required to salvage deer meat and donate it to charity to the extent possible.

The proposed rules are up for approval at the Fish and Wildlife Commission meeting on Friday, Dec. 7 in Salem at ODFW HQ, 4034 Fairview Industrial Drive SE, Salem. The meeting begins at 8 a.m. and follows this agenda,

The commission also will be considering whether to deny or initiate rulemaking for a petition that seeks to amend existing angling regulations for naturally produced spring Chinook Salmon in the Rogue River.

Regulations for both recreational and commercial nearshore groundfish fisheries are also on the agenda. Proposed 2019 regulations are very similar to those adopted for 2018, including a general marine bag limit of 5 fish.

New for 2019, yelloweye rockfish allowances have doubled, so recreational fishing is proposed to be allowed out to the 40 fathom line (instead of 30 fathom line) during the seasonal depth restriction, and the restriction is proposed to start one month later, on May 1. The lingcod, cabezon, and longleader fishery bag limits will remain the same. For more details, see the commission agenda.

In other business, the commission will be asked to approve the following proposals:

· Project funding for Access and Habitat projects and Restoration and Enhancement Projects, plus two appointments to the Restoration and Enhancement Board.

· Rules for big game hunting tags provided to nonprofits for use by disabled veterans.

· Ceremonial hunting tags for Burns-Paiute Tribe.

· Update of Wild Turkey Management Plan, the first update since Plan was adopted in 2004. Changes proposed include updating trap and transplant guidelines, expanding methods to address nuisance and damage, and improving hunter access to wild turkeys.

Public testimony for topics not on the agenda will be held first thing Friday morning, just after the adoption of temporary rules. Persons seeking to testify on issues not on the formal agenda may do so by making arrangements with the ODFW Director’s Office, at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting, by calling 800-720-6339 or 503-947-6044.

Reasonable accommodations will be provided as needed for individuals requesting assistive hearing devices, sign language interpreters or large-print materials. Individuals needing these types of accommodations may call the ODFW Director’s Office at 800-720-6339 or 503-947-6044 at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting.

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