WESTERN ERIE/WCO JOHN BOWSER & DWCO RANDY LEIGHTON|
Steady precipitation has kept the tribs at prime fishing levels with ideal coloration. The high levels have triggered additional runs and large numbers of Steelhead are to be found in all the popular areas. Good water flow in most all the tribs allows for very natural drift presentations. The Walnut Project waters and the basin have been very productive. Fish have moved well into the upper areas of Elk Creek with the Legion Park holes, Girard park area, Follys End and the Streuchen flats all very hot areas. Crooked Creek now has good flow and color and is often less crowded. With the fall runs at their peak, now is a good time to experiment with a variety of bait presentations. Sucker spawn patterns, minnows, micro jigs, skein, and single eggs are still the most popular. Don't be afraid to try what the guy next to is using...it just might work better. Anglers fishing at night have found the new glow in the dark mini jigs to be a very hot bait.
Crappie: Finally saw some crappie caught at the Viking/Landsdowne area.
Steelhead: Nice run in 4-mile behind the Lawrence Park Fishing Club.
Current Fisherpersons News:
If you have been watching the News lately you have probably seen the controversy surrounding the restrooms at Presque Isle State Park (Marina Lake). If you would like to voice your opinions regarding this issue either for or against you should contact the Presque Isle Advisory Board. This board will be voting in January on whether or not the restroom shall remain locked. This post is only to inform persons fishing in the park of the current issues.
Current Legislative News:
Senate Bill 1242 restores funding authorization for PFBC capital projects contained in Act 131 (Senate Bill 1213) . On October 30, Governor Mark Schweiker signed Senate Bill 1213 into law. The Governor's Press Release indicated that he "removed the bond funding for the projects for the Fish and Boat Commission, while not vetoing the projects themselves." Click here for PFBC news release on the capital budget.
The Pennsylvania Senate concurred in House amendments to Senate Bill 1213 on October 9. Senate Bill 1213 passed the House with amendments on October 8, 2002. The amendments provided that the Fish and Boat Commission projects itemized in Section 10 of the bill will be financed by incurring debt repaid from the General Fund. The amended bill also increased the amount authorized for rebuilding the dam at Leaser Lake, Lehigh County.
1. The Game Commission projects were previously approved in Act 131 of 2002, and it was not necessary for the General Assembly to give further consideration to these projects.
One More Legislative tidbit:
Background: Senate Bill 463, sponsored by Senator Richard Kasunic with broad bipartisan support, provides that on or after January 1, 2003, it will be illegal for a person born on or after January 1, 1982, to operate certain motorboat unless the person completes a boating safety course and receives a boating safety certificate.
PFBC Position: The Fish and Boat Commission supports enactment of legislation to provide for mandatory boating safety education for operators of motorboats. Senate Bill 463 represents a major step forward in seeking to ensure that operators of motorboats have completed a basic boating safety course and have a sound familiarity with the rules of the road of boating and safe boating practices. The PFBC endorses this legislation.
For more information on the above legislative news visit WWW.fish.state.pa.us
(continuing story of entrance into the Deputy Program) by DWCO Brendley
The twenty-four of us who were left began to bond together and realized that as a group we could get through whatever the training officers dished out. Unfortunately, the first weekend at school was lectures and paperwork. We spent twelve hours a day in class listening, writing, listening, and writing some more! Thankfully, we took a ten-minute break each hour to stretch our legs and get a drink. Then it was back to defensive driving, law, regulations, and more law. We had to learn the 67 counties in Pennsylvania, the PA game fishes, and more law. By the time the weekend was over we were actually looking forward to being pepper-sprayed. But that's another story for another episode…
EASTERN ERIE / WCO MARK KERR
SIXTEENMILE FISHING CONCERNS:
FRENCH CREEK WALLEYE:
WESTERN CRAWFORD / WCO JOE RUSSELL
JAMESTOWN, Crawford County (Oct. 28, 2002) -- A joint public meeting to address a proposed change in the outboard motor horsepower limit on Pymatuning Lake has been planned by Pennsylvania and Ohio conservation agencies, the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) announced today.
The meeting will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 21, at Pymatuning Valley Primary School, 191 West Main Street (Route 6), in Andover, Ohio.
Residents of both states are invited to attend and comment on proposed horsepower limits changes on Pymatuning Lake. The lake is located in both Ashtabula County, Ohio, and Crawford County, Pa.
Presently, an agreement between the two states prohibits use of boat motors larger than 10 horsepower. Pennsylvania this past spring embarked on a pilot program that increased horsepower limits from 10 to 18 at six state parks. They are: Lake Marburg, Codorus State Park, York County; Lake Wilhelm, Maurice K. Goddard State Park, Mercer County; Lake Arthur, Moraine State Park, Butler County; Lake Nockamixon, Nockamixon State Park, Bucks County; Glendale Lake, Prince Gallitzin State Park, Cambria County; and Yellow Creek Lake, Yellow Creek State Park, Indiana County.
With the exception of Yellow Creek, all lakes involved in Pennsylvania’s pilot program are larger than 1,000 acres.
At Pymatuning Lake, officials from both states now are considering an increase in horsepower limits above 10 horsepower. The purpose of any increase in horsepower would be to improve safety for boaters traveling the lake during stormy weather or windy conditions. There is no interest in changing the character of the recreational experience at Pymatuning by allowing high horsepower boats.
Boaters are reminded that should horsepower changes be recommended and approved by both states, the effective date would not occur prior to joint action by both Ohio and Pennsylvania legislators. In the meantime, the 10 horsepower maximum limit would remain in effect.
Both Ohio and Pennsylvania are requesting public comment on the proposed horsepower increase. Persons wishing to express views in favor or against any change are invited attend the meeting, or submit written comments, no later than Nov. 29, to: Pymatuning State Park, Attn: Horsepower Limits, 2660 Williamsfield Road, Jamestown, PA 16134.
For more information on boating and other features at Pennsylvania's State parks, call 1-888-PA-PARKS; or visit DCNR's web site through the PA PowerPort at www.state.pa.us, PA Keyword: “state parks.”
For details on boating regulations, safety classes, public access areas and registering watercraft, visit the Fish and Boat Commission's web site at www.fish.state.pa.us.
Now is the time to start looking for boaters safety classes for the 2003 boating season. A new bill, Senate bill 463, has been approved making it mandatory for the safe boating class to be taken before you can operate a boat on Commonwealth waters, if you were born after January 1, 1982. Don't wait till spring to find a class this is something that you can take care of over the winter months. A copy of the entire press release is listed below.
On November 12, the Senate Game and Fisheries Committee approved legislation establishing a new mandatory boater education program for the Commonwealth.
Senate Bill 463 was sponsored by Senator Richard A. Kasunic with strong bipartisan co-sponsorship. The bill will, if enacted, require operators of most motorboats born after January 1, 1982, to complete a boating safety course and have a boating safety certificate before running their boats on Pennsylvania waters. The new requirement would take effect on January 1, 2003. Operators of unpowered boats and boats powered by motors less than 25 horsepower would not be required to get certificates. Senate Bill 463 provides for a $10 fee for issuance of a boating safety certificate, good for a lifetime, and a $5 certificate replacement fee.
"The Fish and Boat Commission knows that boater safety education works, and Senate Bill 463 is an important step forward," said Fish and Boat Commission Executive Director Peter A. Colangelo. "I want to thank Senator Kasunic, Chairman Ed Helfrick and the members of the Senate Game and Fisheries Committee for their persistence and foresight in pursuing this legislation," Colangelo added.
Nearly 200,000 Pennsylvanians already possess boating safety education certificates. Since 1999, when the Fish and Boat Commission required operators of personal watercraft to obtain certificates, about 115,000 certificates have been issued. "Many boaters have taken safety courses and obtained certificates in an effort to become better informed and safer boaters," noted John Simmons, Director of the Bureau of Boating and Education. "In fact, many of those taking courses were not doing so to meet requirements to operate personal watercraft such as jet skis, but in response to a sincere desire to become better boaters," Simmons added.
"The Fish and Boat Commission is confident that, if Senate Bill 463 becomes law, boaters who need to take courses and earn certificates will be able to do so before the 2003 boating season," Colangelo stated. "It's easier than ever to find and take a boating safety course. We offer distance learning and home study alternatives through the Internet and video courses, and many classroom boating courses are offered during the winter months," Colangelo concluded.
In order to become law, Senate Bill 463 will need to pass the State Senate and State House during the remaining days of the fall 2002 legislative session.