PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The Oregon and Washington fish and wildlife commissions are nearing a decision on a push to ban the use of gillnets to catch salmon on the main stem of the Columbia River.
Oregon's commission is scheduled to vote Friday on the proposed new rules for the lower Columbia. A decision in Washington is scheduled for next week.
The proposed rules would phase in the gillnet ban over a three-year period and prioritize recreational fisheries on the river's main stem. By 2017, gillnets would be allowed only in side channels.
The proposed new rules were requested by Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber, who sought a compromise after a group of environmentalists and recreational fishing interests pushed a ballot measure that would have banned gillnets altogether next year.