Accomplishments for Washington State Guides Association is a testament to the hard word work and dedication of the Executive Board and active members in WSGA. We have achieved quite a few accomplishments since we began in 2018.
WSGA is recognized as a stakeholder in Washington State fisheries by WDFW and lawmakers.
Accomplishments for 2021
- Six eboard members are also members of the WDFW Guide Advisory Committee, which WSGA was instrumental in the organization and approval of the WDFW guides Advisory Committee.
- Part of Steelhead working group consisting of 6 other major groups in an attempt to address this coastal steelheading issue with WDFW. Managed to get a legislative hearing in January 2021, as well as a budget proviso for WDFW.
- WSGA attended numerous coastal steelhead group meetings as well as all WDFW town halls for this issue.
- WSGA was instrumental in getting WDFW to create an ad-hoc Coastal Steelhead Advisory Group.
- WSGA has been invited and attended all three 2021 Recreational Fishing Stakeholder Meetings with WDFW.
- WSGA Board members attending numerous North of Falcon meetings for 2021.
- Members of the executive board have consistently communicated with legislators and senators on fishing issues which affect sport anglers and ultimately our industry.
- WSGA has started the process to create a stewardship plan. This is currently in the works and should be completed by first quarter of 2022.Worked on CARES act funding to get fishing guides included in the second round of funding, which had been excluded in the first round of funding. We attended multiple meetings and pushed for this, but it the way the federal language was written, we were unsuccessful.
- WSGA board members met with the region 3 enforcement, fish program biologists, and lands manager from WDFW to discuss some of the questions and issues in the Yakima River area. It was productive and more communication will occur.
- Presented Guides Mike Salazar and Phil Stephens with posthumous lifetime memberships.
- Presented Donny Glazer with posthumous lifetime sport angler membership.
- Donated $1,000.00 to Hatchery Wild Coexist.
Accomplishments for 2020
- Six Executive Board members are also members of the WDFW Guide Advisory Committee, which WSGA was instrumental in the organization and approval of the WDFW guides Advisory Committee. We have had several meetings thus far in 2020, since Covid 19 started, many of these meetings have been emergent and held online.
- Invited to meet with Jeff Davis of WDFW in discussed the 25-year plan. We shared some of the proposals and suggestions developed at our January general membership meeting and received a positive response from Davis and others regarding these suggestions.
- Conference with WDFW Director and Fish Program Director frequently.
- Held two guide meetings in Eastern Washington March 7th, Ellensburg and Tri-Cities.
- WSGA was invited by the WDFW director to attend a meeting on April 14 with representatives from 23 other outdoor organizations in our state. The purpose of the meeting is to discuss strategies for reopening fishing, hunting, and state-owned facilities. Subsequently, WSGA met with WDFW and other stakeholders several times on this issue.
- North of Falcon with WSGA representatives attending.
- Worked with WDFW, Coastal Charter Associations and the Governor’s Office to get guides and charter operators back to work. WSGA structured a Covid 19 Business Safety Plan, which allowed this to happen.
- Developed a business plan for WSGA to allow growth into the future and gain more membership and standing with WDFW and the lawmakers in Washington State.
- Due to Covid 19, the “Take a Legislator Fishing” day on the Cowlitz River was postponed until further notice.
- WSGA is continually invited to the WA State Sport fishing stakeholder’s conference calls. We have had 3 meetings in 2020.
- WSGA worked in cooperation with GHGA, GHSC, & OPGA to successfully request a legislative hearing for WDFW in regards to the 2020/2021 coastal steelhead regulation changes.
Accomplishments for 2019
- We have spent much of the year working on the logbook issue in Washington State. We are glad we were part of the process because it was clear to us the WDFW Commission were going to implement logbooks regardless of guide input. This is primarily due to the fact that a majority of guides did not get involved in the meetings and process early on.
- Because we were very active in the process, the current logbook looks vastly different from what was proposed. Had the original logbook been instituted, it would have been time consuming as well as overly intrusive. Our efforts in streamlining the logbooks is a success.
- We hammered the importance of starting a WDFW Guide Advisory Committee, which we succeeded! The WDFW Guide Advisory Committee is comprised of 14 members throughout the state to include fly angling guides and conventional tackle guides, which also includes a couple of members who also operate charters. Of the 14 members, currently 5 are from our association.
- In 2019, we held a “Take a Legislator Fishing” on the Cowlitz. The purpose of this event is to raise awareness of the conditions of our fisheries om Washington State. In 2019, we focused this event on the Cowlitz River.
- Executive Board members have met with, not only WDFW Directors but also Legislators and state Senators about sport fishing issues.
Accomplishments for 2018
- Began the Association in May with first meeting 5-24-18.
- Worked with WDFW and Legislation to correct guide fees for the 2019 season.
- Letters of introduction to Commission and Director.
- Worked with Region 4 Fish Program Manager on clarifying closure for Snohomish System and then later updated on how the closure went.
- Developed open dialogue with Representative JT Wilcox.
- Had legislators and a representatives from WDFW out on the river fishing talking about fishing issues.
- Addressing Issues with Logbooks for Guides (Ongoing).
- Met with Director Susewind Jan 2nd.