AZTU-PPC, as well as TU National are actively engaged in developing a collaborative plan for how we should manage Apache Trout if the US Fish and Wildlife Service decides to delist the Apache Trout because the recovery objectives have been met. Stay tuned for more as this evolves!
Priority Waters of AZ
Priority Waters is one of the key initiatives in the new 5-year Strategic Plan that TU National is rolling-out. Julie Carter, Aquatics Branch Chief for AZGFD, and her staff have identified 20 projects that they would like to work on to improve habitat for native & wild fish in AZ. We are working with them now on the funding requirements, prioritizations, and a timeline. This positions AZTU to be in a leadership role in the advancement of the Priority Waters initiative in TU.
Gila Trout Recovery Plan
Gila Trout Recovery Plan (GTRP) was first published in 1979 with numerous updates/meetings since then. The updated Plan was released with comments requested by September 10, 2021. Dr. Helen Neville and Dan Dauwalter of TU’s Science Staff worked very collaboratively with us and TU New Mexico leadership. All parties agree that the document could be improved in the areas of detailed planning, action plans, genetics, science, budget, and measures of success. AZTU-PPC, the AZTU Conservation Committee and the TU Gila Trout Chapter all submitted comments, along with the TU National Science Team. We expect that the review of these comments will take at least 6 months to a year to complete, although no commitment has been made by US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) to change the document. Because AZTU participated in the comment window along with TU National, our comments will be noted, and we have standing to continue to inform the process as it moves forward.
Apache Trout Management Plan
This very important plan to manage and protect Apache Trout, in the event that the USFWS decides to delist them from the Endangered Species List, is moving through the review and final signature process. Both the TU Science Staff and AZTU will be parties to this agreement.
Black River Forest Restoration Environmental Assessment (EA)
The USFS reports that they are working through robust comments received relative to the EA.. The associated Biological Opinion is under peer review. The latest projection is that the EA will be released in the Spring of 2022.
-SB1270 would dedicate five million annually to the Arizona Heritage Fund. This fund pays for park/ trail maintenance, historical site preservation and much more. Funding comes from the AZ lottery fund. Currently this bill has passed the Senate floor, House Land/ Ag. and Rules committee. Next stop is the House floor for a vote. TU supports this bill.
-HCR2024 is a resolution opposing the global 30×30 initiative that aims to conserve/ restore 30% of our lands and waters by 2030. This bill has passed the House, Senate Natural Resource and Senate Rules committee. Next stop is the Senate floor. TU opposes this bill.
-HCR2038 is a resolution supporting proper forest management, highlighting the need to thin and prescribe burn our overgrown forests. This bill has passed the House, Senate Natural Resource and Senate Rules committee. Next stop is the Senate floor. TU supports this bill.
Future Guest Speakers
The AZTU Public Policy Committee (PPC) hosts a virtual meeting on the second Tuesday of the month at 7:00 until 8:00 PM. If you are interested, please contact Tom Osterday at [email protected].
In the NPS’s efforts to protect the native humpbacked chub, they are offering a $25 bounty on each brown trout over 6 inches caught in the Lee’s Ferry section of the Colorado River. While AZ Trout Unlimited is committed to catch and release, we view this as a less threatening option to repeated electro-shocking to remove the brown trout. Click HERE for additional information.
We encourage our members to participate in this program.
The Public Policy Committee conducted our second annual Strategy Summit and focused our attention on collaboratively developing our Action Plans around three major themes: clean water, catchable native and wild trout in Arizona, and organizational enablement.
How a bill becomes a law
For many of us, the process by which a bill becomes law in AZ can be confusing. Click HERE for a quick review of this process.
How to find who your legislators are
Click HERE to find your state representatives/legislators.
How to find your district
Click HERE for your district locater.
How to sign up to Request To Speak (RTS) at the House/Senate
Click HERE for information and upcoming agendas.