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the past two years The Wisconsin Bass Federation has been an active
part of the Fishing Tournament Advisory Committee (FTAC) which was
developed by the DNR to help promulgate potential rules and guidelines
for tournament fishing in the state of
reason for the meetings was that the DNR wants to put new rules and
restrictions on a special group of people because they perceive there
is a growing problem with tournament fishing in our state.
see a growing amount of tournaments that they feel is starting to
cause user conflicts at the boat landings, crowded waterways, and a
potential impact on the fishery.
instead of reaching out to the tournament organizers to help solve
some of these problems, took a knee-jerk reaction and had legislation
adopted that gave them the right to MAKE UP rules as they see fit.
as tournament organizers are always trying to protect the resource;
after all itís a renewable resource that needs to be protected for
future generations. We have developed state of the art live wells to
keep fish healthy and alive, we make sure at our weigh ins that all
care is taken to protect these fish. We go to great lengths to make
sure that landing spots at boat landings are available to the general
public so they too can go fishing. We strive to make sure that
invasive species are not transmitted from one lake to another by using
boat washes and removing weeds from boats and trailers.
we do more? YES, and we are working toward that goal everyday at every
the DNR, after years of trying to get legislation to CONTROL
tournaments with an iron fist, they now seem to be succeeding.
past week, the proposed rule package from the FTAC/DNR was sent to the
NRB. This in hopes of getting hearings scheduled in a very short time
and then to install them as actual rules.
are new rules that cover the amount of boats allowed on a particular
body of water, and how many days a tournament can come to an area.(one
needs a slide rule to figure this out) There are restrictions on what
tournaments need to do for Invasive species control. There are NEW
fees, and, ok letís call them really what they are: TAXES on both
tournament organizers and contestants alike.
are many new restrictions in the new rules package but the worst of
all is a proposed rule that not even the FTAC ever voted on or even
mentioned-ever. The DNR and the NRB just decided by themselves to make
2/3 of the fishing season closed to all live release tournament
fishing. From July 1st to August 31st!
can see these new proposed regulations on their website, or you can
visit our website and they are located on the main page. www.wisconsinbass.com
is preposterous! This is outright discrimination. They are taking away
our chosen sport for most of our short
system was NOT broken.
The system we had and still currently have only needed communication
and cooperation to make it better. Not new taxes, not new restrictions
by two groups, the DNR and the NRB who I feel has lost touch with
current trends and is firmly locked in the past.
kinds of regulations and restrictions on the scale of what they
propose is unprecedented in the
of looking to other states that have rules that work, and DNR agencies
that actually work with tournament organizers, and then adopt some of
their rules and policies they chose to go to the other extreme.
needs to stop.
ask here for all of us in this state to tell the DNR that we are taxed
and feeíd to death. We do not need more fees. We do not need more
restrictions. We want to protect the resource. We simply want to fish.
want to work with you, we always have.
Patrick J. Schmalz