Help Support the Salmon Center by encouraging the Fish and Wildlife Commission to support the Wild Future Initiative! The petition text is below and you may submit a letter with your name. Thank you!
I am writing today to ask you to support regional fishery enhancement groups through the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife’s Wild Future Initiative.
For over 25 years, the RFEGs have worked closely with WDFW, tribes, and local government agencies to restore habitat and recover salmon throughout Washington. Since 1990, RFEGs have completed nearly 4,000 salmon projects, released 75 million fish and opened over 1100 miles of stream. Most impressively, though, RFEGs have managed to leverage funds at a more than 6:1 ratio, making RFEGs an incredibly effective partner. In 2015 alone, volunteers contributed nearly 53,000 hours to salmon projects. This combination of volunteer and community support, along with the strong ability to leverage funds demonstrate the significant impact that RFEGs have on recovering salmon throughout Washington.
For the last sixteen years, the Hood Canal Salmon Enhancement Group has been working with WDFW to restore ESA-listed Hood Canal summer chum through supplementation and other restoration work. In this time, community members have given over 53,000 hours of their time towards the project. Since 2008, HCSEG has restored over 150 acres of estuarine habitat, benefiting Hood Canal summer chum, other species of salmon, birds and other mammals around Hood Canal while also improving water quality. Organizations like HCSEG serve as effective liaisons between agencies like WDFW and the community while providing local knowledge and support.
WDFW is specifically proposing $1.4 million to help support HCSEG and the other RFEGs. These funds would help to restore important fish habitat and continue important recovery work being done by groups like HCSEG. Since the creation of the RFEGs in 1990, organizations have been running on miniscule budgets. Currently, RFEGs are facing even more cuts at the state and federal level. WDFW’s Wild Future proposal would supply needed funds while also serving as a sound investment, given the RFEGs ability to leverage funds.
Please support WDFW’s Wild Future proposal, and in turn, our communities and salmon.