BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                    AB 1201


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          Date of Hearing:  April 28, 2015


                  ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE ON WATER, PARKS, AND WILDLIFE


                                 Marc Levine, Chair


          AB 1201  
          Salas - As Amended April 22, 2015


          SUBJECT:  Nonnative Species Predation


          SUMMARY:  Requires the Department of Fish and Wildlife (DFW) to  
          develop and initiate a science-based approach that helps address  
          predation by non-native species on Delta species. Specifically,  
          this bill:  


          1)Makes findings related to the decline of native fish species  
            in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta (Delta) and the potential  
            for predation by nonnative species on those at-risk fish  
            species.


          2)Requires DFW, by June 30, 2016 to initiate a science-based  
            approach that helps address predation by non-native species  
            upon species in the Delta listed as threatened and endangered  
            under the California Endangered Species Act (CESA).


          EXISTING LAW:  











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          1)Recognizes striped bass as a nonnative introduced sportfish.

          2)Prohibits striped bass from being transported or carried out  
            of or into California except striped bass taken from the  
            Colorado River by sportfishing licensees.  Allows striped bass  
            legally taken in another state that permits the sale of  
            striped bass to be imported into the state subject to Fish and  
            Game Commission (FGC) regulations. 

          3)Prohibits striped bass from being possessed aboard a  
            commercial fishing vessel, or by a commercial fisherman, and  
            prohibits striped bass from being taken by any kind of net.   
            Allows striped bass to be sold or offered for sale only by an  
            aquaculturalist, or if it was taken legally in another state.

          4)The FGC by regulation sets seasons, bag limits and size limits  
            for take of striped bass.  Current regulations establish a  
            statewide limit of 2 fish, 18 inches minimum in length, except  
            in the Colorado River District, the Southern District and  
            certain lakes, where the limit is 10 fish with no minimum size  
            restriction.



          FISCAL EFFECT:  Unknown


          COMMENTS:  This bill requires DFW, by June 30, 2016 to implement  
          a program that helps address predation by non-native species  
          upon listed Delta species.


          1)Author's statement:  The author states that promoting the  
            long-term ecological health of the Sacramento-San Joaquin  
            Delta and its native species are critical to ensuring a  
            reliable and sustainable water supply for all Californians and  
            that this bill helps to achieve that by requiring DFW to  









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            develop a science-based approach to predation of listed  
            species by non-native species in the Delta. 
          2)The striped bass debate:  Most past efforts focused on  
            nonnative species that could predate on native species were  
            focused on striped bass.  Water agencies, particularly in the  
            San Joaquin Valley, have claimed striped bass are a primary  
            cause of the decline of delta smelt and other pelagic species  
            and not lack of instream flows in the Sacramento and San  
            Joaquin Rivers.  Other stakeholders have disagreed citing a  
            lack of instream flows and a loss of habitat as primary  
            stressors on those species. 


          3)Prior and related legislation:


            AB 1253 (Fuller), as introduced in 2009, would have removed  
            the existing restrictions on the commercial possession or sale  
            of striped bass, and on the taking of striped bass with nets.   
            AB 1253 was amended into a bill exempting fireworks from the  
            California Coastal Act and held in Senate Natural Resources  
            and Water Committee.


            AB 2336 (Fuller), introduced in 2010, would have required the  
            Delta Stewardship Council, in the course developing and  
            adopting the Delta plan, to direct the Delta Independent  
            Science Board to conduct an assessment of other stressors on  
            populations of native species in the Delta.  AB 2336 was held  
            in Senate Natural Resources and Water Committee.  


          4)Supporting arguments:  Supporters state that in a healthy  
            Delta there should be the ability to deliver reliable water  
            supplies, sustain native species, and accommodate a variety of  
            recreational activities. Supporters add that, today, however,  
            the Delta ecosystem is in severe distress and there is no  









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            major stressor facing the Delta ecosystem that can be ignored.  
            Supporters state that this bill aligns with broader efforts to  
            base management decisions in the Delta on science and places  
            the responsibility on the appropriate state agency to manage a  
            statewide problem.


          5)Opposing arguments:  Opponents state that the impacts to the  
            estuary that occur due to exporting vast amounts of water  
            primarily by the State and Federal Water Projects have been  
            found to be the fundamental cause for fishery declines  
            according to the best available peer reviewed science.   
            Opponents argue there has not been enough funding dedicated to  
            correct these impacts while peer reviewed science on predation  
            in the Estuary has relegated predation to be the least  
            important stressor on fisheries and one that does not have an  
            impact on the system's ecology or fish at a population level.


          6)Clerical error in the bill text:  There is a clerical error in  
            the current bill text that mistakenly puts the date of DFW  
            compliance at June 30, 2106 instead of June 30, 2016.
























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          REGISTERED SUPPORT / OPPOSITION:




          Support


          Metropolitan Water District of Southern California




          Opposition



          Allied Fishing Groups
          Black Bass Action Committee
          Bass Classics of Santa Clara
          California Fly Fishers Unlimited 
          California Sportfishing Protection Alliance
          California Striped Bass Association
          Chico Flyfishers  
          Coastside Fishing Club
          Delta Fly Fishers
          Diablo Valley Fly Fishermen
          E.C. Powell Fly Fishers
          Fishery Foundation of California









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          Fly Fishers For Conservation
          Fly Fishers of Davis 
          Friends of Butte Creek
          Granite Bay Flycasters
          Gold Country Fly Fishers
          Grizzly Peak Flyfishers
          Golden Gate Angling & Casting Club
          Golden West Women Flyfishers
          Hi's Tackle Box 
          ICON Products Inc.
          Mission Peak Fly Anglers
          NCC - Federation of Fly Fishers
          NORCAL Kayak Anglers
          Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen's Assoc.
          Pasadena Casting Club 
          Peninsula Fly Fishers
          Recreational Fishing Alliance
          Salmon Restoration Association 
          Santa Cruz Fly Fisherman
          Shasta Fly Fishers
          SWC- Federation of Fly Fishers
          Striperfest 
          Tracy Fly Fishers
          Tri-Valley Fly Fishers
          United Anglers of California 
          United Pier & Shore Anglers of California
          USA Fishing
          Wilderness Fly Fishers


          Analysis Prepared by:Tina Cannon Leahy / W., P., & W. / (916)  
          319-2096














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