N.H. Fish and Game Commission -- 2004 Meeting Minutes

Meeting minutes are posted here as they become available.


NEW HAMPSHIRE FISH AND GAME COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES
DECEMBER 15, 2004
FISH AND GAME HEADQUARTERS, 11 HAZEN DRIVE, CONCORD, NH 0330

Commissioners Present: W. Morse, S. Guaraldi, R. Phillipson, E. Hatch, N. Russell, T. Tichy, and S. Nottonson.

Commissioners Absent: D. Clarke, G. Normandeau

Executive Director Perry - present

Commissioner Chair Tichy called the meeting to order at 1:08 p.m and asked the audience to join in the pledge of allegiance. Commissioner Tichy informed the audience that the public is entitled to attend all Commission meetings and when recognized by the Chairman, the public may speak on any item on the agenda.

ACTION ITEMS:
1. Commissioner Hatch moved to approve the November Commission Minutes as written and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

At this time, Commissioner Tichy announced that former Rockingham County Commissioner Douglas Ross was in attendance at the meeting. Commissioner Tichy read aloud and presented Doug with a resolution honoring him for his efforts during his tenure on the Fish and Game Commission. The resolution read as follows:

Whereas, Douglas Ross served the citizens of New Hampshire and Rockingham County on the Fish and Game Commission for 5 years, participating on the Policy and Legislative Committees with great passion, dignity and dedication; and

Whereas, under his leadership the Policy Subcommittee of the Commission undertook a significant project to review and revise the Commission Handbook; and

Whereas, he continued the tradition of joint liaison meetings in the seacoast area and supported the notion of Commission meetings held at a variety of locations throughout the state to provide opportunities for a greater diversity of constituents to attend and provide their input; and;

Whereas, he was devoted to a fair and reasoned approach to the Commission's responsibilities, demonstrated by his willingness to listen to the perspectives of sportsmen and women within the context of the science of wildlife management; and

Whereas, the Commission's connection to landowners, municipalities and agriculturalists was improved with innovative recognition programs, attendance at local meetings concerning the value of hunting and establishment of a special subcommittee on agriculture;

Now, Therefore Be It Resolved, that the New Hampshire Fish and Game Commission hereby honors and congratulates Douglas Ross on his retirement from service as Rockingham County Fish and Game Commissioner.

Be It Further Resolved that the Fish and Game Department and Commission hereby expresses its sincere gratitude to Douglas Ross for his contributions to wildlife conservation and wishes him many years of enjoyment in New Hampshire's great outdoors.

Unanimously adopted by the New Hampshire Fish and Game Commission this twentieth day of October, Two Thousand and Four.
_________________________
Theodore A. Tichy, Chairman
NH Fish and Game Commission
__________________________
Lee E. Perry, Executive Director
NH Fish and Game Department

Commissioner Commissioner Tichy, on behalf of the Commission, stated that former Commissioner Ross provided a great deal of service to the Commission and as a token of their appreciation presented Doug with a few gifts. Doug stated that it was a pleasure serving on the Commission with such a good group of individuals and further stated, "Fish and Game is a great Department".

2. Commissioner Phillipson moved to approve the expenditure of $1,875.00 from the Fisheries Habitat Account in order to cover the cost of continuing a Joint Funding Agreement with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) for the operation of continuous water temperature monitors at two stream flow gages on the upper Connecticut River and Commissioner Russell seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

3. Charlie Bridges, Habitat & Diversity Coordinator, announced that the White Mountain National Forest has been engaged in a Forest Plan Revision for many years and recently released the Draft Environmental Impact Statement, which includes a list of 4 alternatives. Alternative 2 is the Forest Services preferred alternative and would form the basis of the revised forest plan if approved. (See Executive Summary Attached). Much discussion ensued.

Commissioner Tichy commented that even at the high rate of harvest going on in the forest it is still not being overcut by any means. Charlie agreed and commented, "They do good work".

Commissioner Guaraldi questioned if and when the area becomes a designated wilderness area if the Forest Service and the Department are prohibited from conducting habitat management on that land 15 or 20 years down the road. Charlie replied "yes".

Commissioner Nottonson stated that even though the property may be open to hunting, it is really very limited for some individuals. If someone is successful, they may need to evaluate how they are going to retrieve the animal without using equipment or machines, which are prohibited on that property.

Commissioner Phillipson inquired if ATV's would be allowed on the forest property and Charlie replied that ATV's would not be allowed. Commissioner Phillipson stated that he can not understand supporting something that will never allow changes to happen, "forever is a long time". He further stated that as a Commissioner it is their duty to represent ATV riders as well as hunters and fishermen.

Commissioner Tichy inquired whether or not Charlie Bridges felt that the Forest Service could in fact go with a different alternative based on public input received, or did he believe they already have enough input and that is what is being recommended. Charlie responded that the later of the two was probably true, however, he stated that all of the alternatives have to be viable alternatives to be potentially adopted.

Commissioner Tichy stated that it might be in the best interest of the Commission to endorse Alternative 2 with some modifications.

Ron Vars, Board of Director's, NH Wildlife Federation, was in attendance at the meeting and announced that the Wildlife Federation would be sending formal comments to the Forest Service as well regarding the alternative plan. He spoke relative to the Federation's position on the issue and stated that some of the concerns the Commission have are similar to those of the Wildlife Federation. He reported that the Wildlife Federation is against any additional wilderness area as they feel it will not add anything to the equation. He stated that most of the concerns are habitat issues in the National Forest. He stated that the plan does not address declining species such as woodcock and that we do not know what the future will bring. In closing, he reported that the Wildlife Federation is recommending incorporating a management category into the plan, not a wilderness category.

Steve Weber, Chief, Wildlife Division, stated that there was good discussion on the issue and that it was a very complex one. He recommended that at this time, rather than take a formal position, he suggested that the Commission request that Director Perry work with the Wildlife Division staff to compile a letter to the Forest Service consisting of the Commission and the Department's comments/concerns relative to the White Mountain National Forest Plan.

Commissioner Nottonson moved that Director Perry work with the Wildlife Division staff to compile a letter to the White Mountain National Forest expressing both the Department and the Commission's interest in the Revision Plan prior to the deadline and Commissioner Hatch seconded. Commissioner Guaraldi stated she wanted to reiterate her strong feelings against limiting the management of the Forest Service and totally eliminating the potential future use of ATVs. She stated "don't take away the opportunity to make that decision as time goes on." The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Morse stated that he does not agree with prohibiting snowmobiles, ATV's, or any other use. In closing, he commented, "things change with time".

Director Perry stated that today it may not be right allowing ATV's on the land, however, technology may change in 10 -15 years and the ATV may be improved to be quieter and cleaner and change how they are looked at all together.

Commissioner Guaraldi thanked Charlie Bridges for an excellent presentation and interpreting the document for the Commission.

LATE ACTION ITEM
1. Commissioner Hatch moved to accept a $4,000 in-kind donation from the Great Bay Stewards for the installation of an educational ropes course by Wingspeed Adventures of Francestown, New Hampshire and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. John Nelson, Chief, Marine Division, reported that the course is in its final stages of completion and expects it to be ready for use by the Spring of 2005, at which time he will invite the Commission down for a tour and challenge on the ropes.

INFORMATION ITEMS
1. Dan Lynch, Assistant Director, provided the monthly financial statement dated November 30, 2004. (See attached). Dan distributed a handout consisting of the MBNA Affinity Credit Card Program stats.

2. Steve Weber, Chief, Wildlife Division, presented a power point presentation to the Commission consisting of possible rule changes for the 2005/2006 hunting and trapping season. Steve reported the following:

* Department is not proposing any changes to the basic season structure for deer, moose,
bear, turkey, and small game.
* Proposing to establish a year round season for wild boar, woodchuck, and red
squirrel.
* Proposing to establish a trapping season for opossum concurrent with the raccoon and the
fox trapping seasons.
* Proposing to establish the minimum muzzleloader caliber for moose and deer at 45
caliber, currently for moose the caliber is 50 and deer is 40.
* Clarify the fisher bag limit by revising the wording.
* Changing the on-line moose application deadline from 4:00 p.m. to midnight.
* Eliminate the requirement to call in a Long Island Deer Kill within 24 hours.
* Consider eliminating the need for a hearing prior to closing a Deer Registration Station,
wording yet to be determined.

In closing, Steve requested that Commissioners forward their comments through the Director's Office as soon as possible, prior to the end of December.

Commissioner Nottonson inquired whether the department is managing for trophy deer, body weight, or both? Steve responded that the basic management for deer in New Hampshire is quality deer, moderate numbers, and a well-distributed age class of bucks and does.

Commissioner Russell stated that he strongly supports the doe permit system, as the one in Maine allows an extra 3,000 permits to be taken in one particular unit.

Commissioner Tichy brought forward some comments on behalf of the north country constituents. He stated that from young successional growth in timber areas there seems to be a higher population of snowshoe hares and bobcats in the area. He requested a proposal to allow houndsmen to run bobcats in January and February, however, not allow any taking. The houndsmen would be required to keep a logbook of when, where, and what they ran and submit the data to the department. The department can use the data to determine if the population in the North Country is increasing or not.

Commissioner Tichy also stated that he would like to see a fall archery turkey season with the northern zones to be included in the season. He stated turkey are doing better than anticipated and does not think it would affect anything.

He further reported that he would like to see the coyote problem addressed by expanding the night hunting of coyote through the summer months and making the season January 1 - September 1.

Commissioner Nottonson reported that he had a conversation with a local farmer recently who also expressed in writing his concern for the crow season to be moved forward having it start in conjunction with initial planting time in hopes of losing alot less of his crop for a few weeks during growing season. Steve Weber responded that the Fish and Wildlife Service regulate crows and that there are no seasons during prime breeding season.

3. Dan Lynch, Assistant Director, provided an update relative to hunting and fishing participation trends in the New England States. Dan reported that he obtained data from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on five states, Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Vermont. He provided a chart entitled "License Certifications For New England" to the Commission. The chart indicated that over a ten-year period that there has been a slight decrease in hunting participation and that 1997 was the peak year for fishing participation. (See attached chart.)

At this time, Commissioner Hatch moved to have the 2005 Commission Meetings on the third Wednesday of every month at 1:00 p.m. and Commissioner Nottonson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.


STANDING COMMITTEE REPORTS
POLICY COMMITTEE: Commissioner Clarke, Chair; Commissioners E. Hatch, R. Phillipson, and S. Nottonson. Commissioner Nottonson reported on behalf of Commissioner Clarke. He reported that the hunting digest suggestions have been submitted to the Director and staff for review. Commissioner Nottonson requested that the Commission be invited to participate in a discussion with staff regarding the changes.

He spoke relative to an article "Free riders, free hunters"...The article was forwarded to the Policy Committee and will be meeting again in the near future.

LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE Commissioner Guaraldi, Chair; Commissioners N. Russell, E. Hatch, G. Normandeau, and W. Morse. Commissioner Guaraldi reported that the committee met the morning of the Commission meeting and reviewed the short titles of the LSR's. She reported that the committee is continuing to work together and will be having another meeting in the near future. Commissioner Guaraldi stated, "It's a great working committee". She further reported that Sandy Falicon is doing her usual outstanding job in assisting the committee.

ISSUES IN THE 21ST CENTURY: Commissioner Phillipson, Chair: Commissioner Clarke, Tichy, and Normandeau. Commissioner Phillipson reported that there were no new issues, therefore, no meeting.

RIVERS COMMITTEE: Commissioner Morse; Commissioner Morse reported that there was no meeting, therefore, no report.

LAKES COMMITTEE: Commissioner Guaraldi; Commissioner Guaraldi reported that the committee is working to develop procedures for state surplus land to be brought before the Lakes Committee for review.

AWARDS COMMITTEE: Commissioner Tichy, and Hatch. Department staff: D. Preve, J. Stokes, and M. Garabedian. Commissioner Tichy reported that there was no meeting, therefore, no report.

REVENUE COMMITTEE: Commissioner Nottonson, Chair; Commissioners Morse, Guaraldi, and Hatch. Commissioner Nottonson reported that the committee will be providing the Department with input in the near future regarding the establishment of revenue goals.

COMMISSIONERS REPORTS
Commissioner Russell inquired as to obtaining a breakdown of archery and muzzleloader by towns. Steve Weber replied that there is the extensive annual Harvest Summary that provides that information in detail. In addition, Commissioner Russell inquired as to why the Vermont deer kill was down so drastically. Steve replied that he could not answer for them, however, he received numerous reports of very low activity for a long period of time.


DIRECTOR'S REPORT
Director Perry reported that Fred Toll, Councilman for the City of Laconia suddenly passed away from diabetic complications. He reported that Fred was working rather closely on the Winninsquam Access project with the department.

He spoke relative to the decision not to produce the 2005 Wildlife Calendars and stated that it was simply a budgetary decision as the $25,000 necessary to produce the calendar wasn't there. He stated that they are a popular item and reported that many people from around the state have been inquiring about them. He stated that he would look into other ways to pay for the production costs in the future.

Director Perry reported that there is a issue in Plymouth, at the Baker River access site. After installing the access site, the public voiced concerns regarding the design and it's safety. The selectmen and other officials called and wrote letters of concerns and offered assistance in obtaining a solution for the rebuilding of the access. Director Perry reported that there was a meeting recently to discuss options on how to correct the site and make it something everyone is comfortable with.

He stated that the Region 5 Fisheries Program has been an ongoing issue. Director Perry reported that the department has been working cooperatively with the other states and it appears that the efforts have been worthwhile as The Fish and Wildlife Service has reprogrammed some monies and congress had added additional funding to the Service's budget for FY 2005. He stated that he was unsure of the amount and that he would look into it for further information

In closing, Director Perry reported that he and the Senior Staff recently met with Governor Elect Lynch's Transition Team, which seemed to go well. He stated that they have been very interested in budgets as well as some of the issues we have been facing. Director Perry stated that hopes and believes the department will have a good working relationship with the new administration.

CALL TO THE PUBLIC
Former Commissioner Doug Ross inquired regarding the Connecticut Lakes Headwaters and the possibility of maintaining some of the valuable mature beech trees for habitat purposes for deer, bear and grouse. Steve Weber replied that he would look into his request.

At this time, 4:11 p.m., Commissioner Guaraldi moved to adjourn and Commissioner Morse seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Respectfully submitted,


Sharon Guaraldi, Secretary

Approved: ________________________ Date: _________________________ Ted Tichy, Chairman


NEW HAMPSHIRE FISH AND GAME COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES
NOVEMBER 17, 2004
FISH AND GAME HEADQUARTERS, 11 HAZEN DRIVE, CONCORD, NH 03301

Commissioners Present: G. Normandeau, W. Morse, S. Guaraldi, R. Phillipson, E. Hatch, D. Clarke, N. Russell, T. Tichy, and S. Nottonson.

Commissioners Absent: none

Executive Director Perry - present

Commissioner Chair Tichy called the meeting to order at 1:15 p.m and ask the audience to join in the pledge of allegiance. Commissioner Tichy informed the audience that the public is entitled to attend all Commission meetings and when recognized by the Chairman, the public may speak on any item on the agenda.

ACTION ITEMS:
1. Commissioner Normandeau moved to approve the October Commission Minutes with the revised expenditure of $6,375.00 vs. $5,875.00, as stated in minutes for Action Item #4, and Commissioner Hatch seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

2a.) Commissioner Normandeau moved to accept the donation of a signed and framed, limited edition First of State Striped Bass print "Shadow" by Victor E. Young, donated by the Coastal Conservation Association, to be utilized as a raffle item for the 2004 participants in the Striped Bass Volunteer Angler Survey and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

2b.) Commissioner Clarke moved to accept the donation of a granite bench, valued at approximately $1,300, from Mr. Thom Dionne and family in honor of their father Oscar Cyprien Dionne, to be located at Chapman's Landing and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

3. Commissioner Normandeau moved to approve the proposed interim rules relative to falconry as presented and Commissioner Hatch seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Clarke moved to approve the proposed changes to the wildlife and trapping rules as presented and Commissioner Russell seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Normandeau moved to approve the proposed changes to the marine rules as presented and Commissioner Morse seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

4. Commissioner Nottonson moved to schedule the 2005 Commission Meetings on the third Wednesday of each month, time to be announced, and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

5. Commissioner Tichy read aloud a resolution honoring former Rockingham County Commissioner, Douglas Ross. It read as follows:

Whereas, Douglas Ross served the citizens of New Hampshire and Rockingham County on the Fish and Game Commission for 5 years, participating on the Policy and Legislative Committees with great passion, dignity and dedication; and

Whereas, under his leadership the Policy Subcommittee of the Commission undertook a significant project to review and revise the Commission Handbook; and

Whereas, he continued the tradition of joint liaison meetings in the seacoast area and supported the notion of Commission meetings held at a variety of locations throughout the state to provide opportunities for a greater diversity of constituents to attend and provide their input; and;

Whereas, he was devoted to a fair and reasoned approach to the Commission's responsibilities, demonstrated by his willingness to listen to the perspectives of sportsmen and women within the context of the science of wildlife management; and

Whereas, the Commission's connection to landowners, municipalities and agriculturalists was improved with innovative recognition programs, attendance at local meetings concerning the value of hunting and establishment of a special subcommittee on agriculture;

Now, Therefore Be It Resolved, that the New Hampshire Fish and Game Commission hereby honors and congratulates Douglas Ross on his retirement from service as Rockingham County Fish and Game Commissioner.

Be It Further Resolved that the Fish and Game Department and Commission hereby expresses its sincere gratitude to Douglas Ross for his contributions to wildlife conservation and wishes him many years of enjoyment in New Hampshire's great outdoors.

Unanimously adopted by the New Hampshire Fish and Game Commission this twentieth day of October, Two Thousand and Four.
_________________________
Theodore A. Tichy, Chairman
NH Fish and Game Commission
__________________________
Lee E. Perry, Executive Director
NH Fish and Game Department

At this time, Commissioner Guaraldi moved to accept the above resolution and Commissioner Nottonson seconded. The vote was unanimous

INFORMATION ITEMS
1. Dan Lynch, Assistant Director, provided the monthly financial statement dated October 31, 2004. (See attached). Dan announced that there would be an update on the Affinity Credit Card Program at the December Commission Meeting.

4. (Due to time constraints, Information Item #4 was heard out of sequence.)

Laura Ryder, Supervisor, Aquatic Resource Education Program, gave an overview of the Becoming and Outdoors Woman Program. Laura reported that 2004 is the 10th anniversary of the program and that it is a partnership between the New Hampshire Wildlife Federation and the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department. She reported that the committee consists of Fish and Game staff, Wildlife Federation staff, and volunteers. She provided some history of the program stating that it first started in 1989 at the University of Wisconsin, at Steven's Point, where studies were conducted focusing on why such a low percentage of women were not participating in outdoor activities. She reported that the result was a high level of interest shown, however, there were many barriers perceived by women preventing them from taking part in outdoor activities such as expenses associated with the activity, social pressures, lack of female role-models, and being perceived as a dangerous activity. The program was formed to try to overcome these obstacles and was designed as an introductory program to try to introduce women to various outdoor activities, provide them with some skills, and hope they continue on with what they learned after the program. Laura reported that 40 states and several Canadian Provinces offer the program to date. She stated that New Hampshire has 30 excellent instructors who all volunteer their time each and every workshop, conducting 30 different classes ranging from field dressing big game to kayaking. She further reported that in the course of 10 years, approximately 1800 women have attended a course and the demand still remains high for the fall annual weekend workshop and the winter workshop. She announced that nationally over 20,000 women attend every year. Laura provided results of research conducted by the University of Wisconsin where surveys were sent to 1,412 women. The key finding was that 20% of all women attending a Becoming an Outdoors Woman (BOW) event purchased a hunting license within the past 12 months. She further reported that 48% of Becoming an Outdoors Women alumni purchased a fishing license within the past 12 months. Commissioner Tichy inquired if department staff has the opportunity to attend the program. Laura responded that the department tries to get staff that are interested involved. In closing, Laura reported that the Becoming an Outdoors Women Winter Workshop will be held on February 12th at the Owl Brook Hunter Education Facility in Holderness, New Hampshire, and additional information is available on the department's web page at www.wildlife.state.nh.us. Commissioner Tichy inquired as to Laura's thoughts relative to expanding the program in the future. Laura replied that the program is currently running to capacity, however, stated that she does see room for expansion which will require additional resources in order to make it successful. Commissioner Tichy thanked Laura for an excellent presentation.

At this time, 2:00 p.m., Commissioner Tichy called for a 10-minute recess.

The meeting reconvened at 2:10 p.m.

2. Mark Duda, Director, Responsive Management, provided an overview of the results of the Lapsed Hunter Survey. He stated that the study was conducted to determine the attitudes and motivations of lapsed hunters, including their satisfactions and dissatisfactions with hunting, their constraints and barriers to continued and increased hunting participation, and message themes and programs that will move lapsed to resume hunting in New Hampshire. The study consisted of a telephone survey of resident and non-resident lapsed hunters, who had purchased a New Hampshire hunting license in the past 5 years, however, did not actively hunt in New Hampshire in the 2002 - 2003 or 2003 - 2004 seasons. Mark reported that the study was conducted on a regional basis and that hunters throughout New Hampshire were pleasant to talk with. (9 page summary attached).

3. Sandy Falicon, Legislative/Rules Coordinator, provided an overview on the status of department rulemaking. Sandy reported that next month the Commission would see a text copy of the wildlife management area rules which includes rules for the Owl Brook Hunter Education Facility and the rules in Chapter 800, which contains all the rules on the import, release, and use of wildlife. Steve Weber, Chief, Wildlife Division, announced that at next month's Commission meeting he will be asking for comments/suggestions that the Commission would like staff to review and investigate regarding the wildlife rules. He asked that the Commission talk to people, have discussions, and be able to provide their comments/suggestions in time for next month's meeting. Sandy reported that the wildlife control operator rule amendments would be coming before the Commission for comment/review at the December meeting as well.

STANDING COMMITTEE REPORTS
POLICY COMMITTEE: Commissioner Clarke, Chair; Commissioners E. Hatch, R. Phillipson, and S. Nottonson. Commissioner Clarke reported that the committee met the morning of the Commission meeting and the discussion focused on exploring ways for the non-hunting/fishing public to assist in fees for maintaining fish and wildlife populations and state owned lands. He stated that the committee had a few ideas that will be explored further at a later date.

LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE Commissioner Guaraldi, Chair; Commissioners E. Hatch, G. Normandeau, and W. Morse. Commissioner Guaraldi reported that the committee met on the morning of the Commission meeting and as a result brought 4 brief proposals before the Commission for vote. Commissioner Tichy announced that Commissioner Russell has agreed to join the Legislative Committee in lieu of former Merrimack County Commissioner Jones's resignation from the Commission.

Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support an amendment for leasing department properties and Commissioner Clarke seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support the concept of statutory language that would allow the director to condemn wildlife and Commissioner Morse seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support the naming of the building at Sandy Point Discover Center for Hugh Gregg and Commissioner Morse Seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support an amendment specifying a fee change for the bear permit and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote carried with 6 in favor and 2 opposed, (E. Hatch and N. Russell). Much discussion took place. Commissioner Hatch stated that he was opposed to the increase, however, proposed a $10.00 license fee for residents and a $20.00 for non-resident. Commissioner Morse stated that he felt the license fees should be increased to be brought up to where other states are in pricing. Commissioner Nottonson suggested that the department determine how good the product is before putting a price on it. Commissioner Philipson stated that he felt the bears of New Hampshire are at least as valuable as deer and pheasant and that the price should be brought up to $16.00 making it equal with deer and pheasant. Director Perry stated he does feel that New Hampshire has good quality bears and that the department should be charging more than it currently is. In closing, Commissioner Guaraldi reported that the next scheduled committee meeting is scheduled for December 15, 2004, at 8:30 a.m., Fish and Game Headquarters, 11 Hazen Drive, Concord, New Hampshire.

ISSUES IN THE 21ST CENTURY: Commissioner Phillipson, Chair: Commissioner Clarke, Tichy, and Normandeau. Commissioner Phillipson reported that there were no new issues, therefore, no meeting.

RIVERS COMMITTEE: Commissioner Morse; Commissioner Morse reported that there was no meeting, therefore, no report.

LAKES COMMITTEE: Commissioner Guaraldi; Commissioner Guaraldi reported that she would be attending the meeting on Friday, November 19, 2004, and would report at the December meeting.

AWARDS COMMITTEE: Commissioner T ichy, and Hatch. Department staff: D. Preve, J. Stokes, and M. Garabedian. Commissioner Tichy reported that there was no meeting, therefore, no report.

REVENUE COMMITTEE: Commissioner Nottonson, Chair; Commissioners Morse, Guaraldi, and Hatch. Commissioner Nottonson reported that the committee is seeing progress. He stated that the committee is reviewing ways to make the hunting digest more user friendly and reported that numerous suggestions have been submitted to him. Commissioner Nottonson thanked Sergeant Bruce Bonnenfant and stated that he was of great assistance and provided some great suggestions/information. In closing, he reported that the committee would be producing a report that will be distributed to the Commission for review and input in the near future.

COMMISSIONERS REPORTS
Commissioner Morse announced that he would be hosting an upcoming liaison meeting at the Derry Fish and Game Club on December 7th, at 7:30 p.m.

Commissioner Hatch reported that Chuck Miner, Land Owner Relations Coordinator, provided an excellent presentation with some new thoughts on land to the Hackle & Tackle Sportsmen's Club with approximately 42 people in attendance. Commissioner Tichy requested that Chuck provide an update to the Commission in the near future.

Commissioner Guaraldi reported that she recently learned that Dartmouth College has a very active Bait and Bullet Club.

Commissioner Phillipson reported that he and Commissioner Morse both received calls from a woman who was concerned about obtaining a list of handgun calibers to verify that her 45 long colt was indeed the same as 45 colt. He suggested making a language change in the hunting digest to clarify any questions. Bill Carney, outdoor writer, suggested that the language be left alone as it could be opening pandora's box and stated that it took a long while to get where we are at.

DIRECTOR'S REPORT
Director Perry reported on the status of the Wild Goose site stating that things are moving forward. He reported on discussions with Carol Murray, Commissioner, Department of Transportation, and stated that they are still working to address the best way for access to the site.

Director Perry reported that the Salmon Program has drawn much attention lately. He has received reports indicating that the program should not be a complete loss and appears more promising than in the past.

In addition, Director Perry reported that a hearing was held for John Hardwick earlier in November 2004, and stated that he hopes to make a final decision in the near future.

Director Perry reported that he recently met with other department heads and Governor Elect Lynch who introduced his transition team. Governor Elect Lynch asked for two things from the Department. He asked that the Department provide a synopsis of proposed legislation by the Department and any issues that the Governor's Office should know about that could be coming up within the next six months, such as fishery issues and public access issues.

Director Perry reported that they are in the middle budget reviews and have been advised that Governor Elect Lynch may take the $0 base budget approach to creating a budget for the next biennium and in the interim agencies we instructed to continue as under the direction of Governor Benson. Director Perry stated that some cuts are required in order to balance the budget and will require using some monies from the carrier account to make up the difference.

Director Perry reported that the Revenue Committee asked that he contact the New Hampshire Automobile Dealers Association, which he did, and discussed using some of their informational brochures and boards to get out information relative to fish and wildlife activities. He stated that it was well received and that Dan McLeod, President, New Hampshire Automobile Dealers Association, was going to take the ideas back to the board and get back to Director Perry with their response.

CALL TO THE PUBLIC
Commissioner Normandeau moved to adjourn at 4:07 p.m. and Commissioner Russell seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.


Respectfully submitted,


Sharon Guaraldi, Secretary

Approved: ________________________ Date: _________________________ Ted Tichy, Chairman


NEW HAMPSHIRE FISH AND GAME COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES
OCTOBER 20, 2004
FISH AND GAME HEADQUARTERS, 11 HAZEN DRIVE, CONCORD, NH 03301

Commissioners Present: G. Normandeau, W. Morse, J. Jones S. Guaraldi, R. Phillipson, E. Hatch, D. Clarke, N. Russell, T. Tichy, and S. Nottonson.

Commissioners Absent: all present

Executive Director Perry - present

Commission Chair Tichy called the meeting to order at 1:05 p.m. Commissioner Tichy informed the audience that the public is entitled to attend all Commission meetings and when recognized by the Chairman, the public may speak on any item on the agenda.

ACTION ITEMS:
1. Commissioner Morse moved to approve the September Commission Minutes as written and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

2. Commissioner Hatch moved to approve action items 2 (a) - 2 (e), to be utilized by the Owl Brook Hunter Education Training Facility in Holderness, New Hampshire, and Commissioner Clarke seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Commissioner Tichy, on behalf of the Commission, thanked all of the donors for their generous contributions.

a) In-kind donation of $1,310.00 from Dwight Pennell, Center Tuftonboro.
b) In-kind donation of $1,013.95 from Steve Bennett and Karola Owen of Epsom.
c) In kind donation of $512.00 from Pennell Tent Rentals of Center Tuftonboro.
d) Donation of labor from the New Hampshire Trappers Association for the
construction of old time trappers cabin with displays, valued at approximately
$2,922.00.
e) Donation of a fur kit from the New Hampshire Trappers Association, valued at
approximately $685.00.

3. Commissioner Normandeau moved to accept the donation of miscellaneous fishing equipment from Charles Caldwell, valued at approximately $335.00, to be utilized by the "Let's Go Fishing Program", and Commissioner Russell seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

4. Commissioner Phillipson moved to approve the expenditure of $5,875.00 from the Wildlife Habitat Account and WCRP funds to purchase a conservation easement on 201 acres in Effingham, New Hampshire, and Commissioner Russell seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Much discussion ensued. Commissioner Clarke inquired as to what the restrictions would be on this parcel. Charlie Bridges, Habitat and Diversity Coordinator, reported that it is a standard easement allowing no construction of buildings on the property, no ATV's, and no gravel excavation. Charlie further reported that the Wildlife Habitat Account has a balance of approximately $200,000 - $250,000.

INFORMATION ITEMS
1. Dan Lynch, Assistant Director, provided the monthly financial statement dated September 30, 2004. Dan stated that things are on course with last month and that there were no supplemental appropriations to report.

2. Sandy Falicon, Legislative/Rules Coordinator, provided an overview of the status of regulatory matters relative to overall timetable; draft initial proposal for guides licensing; NOTICE forms for furbearer trapping methods, and wildlife rules.

John Nelson, Chief, Marine Division, provided an overview of the upcoming proceedings for rulemaking for marine. John reported that there are some housekeeping items associated with the Executive Director being able to set certain limits on dogfish based on input from the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Council. In addition, John stated that reporting requirements for harvesters and dealers would be reviewed in the near future.

3. Judy Stokes, Chief, Public Affairs Division, provided an overview on the status of the Lapsed Hunter Survey completed in September, 2004. She reported that Mark Duda, Executive Director, Responsive Management, has been invited to the November Commission Meeting to review the results of the Lapsed Hunter Survey. She reported when hunters were asked why they didn't hunt in New Hampshire, the overwhelming response was that it was very time consuming. Judy stated that there were helpful links on the Department's webpage to access hunter information faster. She reviewed some of the Department's links and pointed out some information the webpage has to offer.

Liza Poinier, Public Affairs Division, discussed the new campaign entitled "Hunt New Hampshire, It's a Whole New Season", located at the top of the Department's web page, www.wildlife.state.nh.us. She reported that the links contain information hunters requested through the survey, for example, where to hunt, giving the public easy links to obtain the data they are looking for to inspire them to get back out in the woods again.


4. Dan Lynch, Assistant Director, provided an update on the Lifetime License Program. Dan reported that to date, approximately 5,300 lifetime licenses have been issued, 4,200 of those being combination licenses for hunting and fishing, 430 hunting only, and approximately 670 fishing only. Dan distributed the lifetime license fee schedule by age structure starting at age 16 and going through age 67. Dan reported that the Insurance Commission determines the fee schedule by license data/fees provided by the Department. Commissioner Normandeau inquired as to how many lifetime licenses were sold in an average year. Dan responded that approximately 63 combination licenses were sold to date, 36 fishing licenses, and 14 hunting licenses.

STANDING COMMITTEE REPORTS

POLICY COMMITTEE: Commissioner Clarke, Chair; Commissioners E. Hatch, R. Phillipson, and S. Nottonson. Commissioner Clarke stated that the committee met the morning of the Commission meeting to discuss habitat improvement and potential marketing schemes. He reported that the committee would meet again on November 17, 2004, prior to the Commission Meeting.

LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE Commissioner Guaraldi, Chair; Commissioners E. Hatch, G. Normandeau, and W. Morse. Commissioner Guaraldi reported that the committee has two new members, Commissioner Normandeau and Commissioner Hatch. Commissioner Guaraldi reported that the committee met the morning of the Commission Meeting. She further reported that the committee would meet on November 17, 2004, prior to the Commission Meeting.

Sandy Falicon, Legislative/Rules Coordinator, reviewed Department Legislative Proposals as follows:

1) Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support the statutory correction to include an amendment that the driver's license requirement should only apply to those obtaining resident licenses, Commissioner Jones seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

2) Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support the amendment of RSA 214:9, and approve the One Day Fishing License as presented, and Commissioner Morse seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

3) Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support the concept of increasing the fee for the bear license to cover program costs and Commissioner Morse seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

4) Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support the removal of references to the waterfowl stamp and treat it as a permit; increase the fee to $8.00, and Commissioner Normandeau seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

5) Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support the concept of the Director having the ability to promote hunting, fishing and trapping by being able to do such things as reducing license prices or do other promotions that might involve giving licenses away and Commissioner Morse seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

6a) Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support the amendment of RSA 211:18 relative to search warrants and the inspection of lobster gear and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

6b) Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support the addition of a penalty for "skimming" to the list of violations for which a person would have to pay a $200 administrative fee and Commissioner Normandeau seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

7) Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support the addition of language needed for obtaining duplicate registrations for OHRV's and Commissioner Russell seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

8) Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support the director having regulatory authority that would allow the option of taking additional turkeys in the fall using firearms and to allow the establishment of an application and permit fees, Commissioner Jones seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

9) Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support a variety of amendments to drop European from the statute, include coyote and opossum in the definition of furbearer, and to require individuals names on tree stands and Commissioner Jones seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

10) Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support the amendment of outdated statutes relative to marine and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

11) Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support the inclusion of text for future references relative to lifetime licenses and Commissioner Morse seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

ISSUES IN THE 21ST CENTURY: Commissioner Phillipson, Chair: Commissioner Clarke, Tichy, and Normandeau. Commissioner Phillipson reported that there were no new issues, therefore, no meeting.

RIVERS COMMITTEE: Commissioner Morse; Commissioner Morse reported that there was no meeting, therefore, no report.

LAKES COMMITTEE: Commissioner Guaraldi; Commissioner Guaraldi reported that there was no meeting, therefore, no report.

AWARDS COMMITTEE: Commissioners Jones, Tichy, and Hatch. Department staff: D. Preve, J. Stokes, and M. Garabedian. Commissioner Jones stated that there was no meeting, therefore, no report.

REVENUE COMMITTEE: Commissioner Nottonson, Chair; Commissioners Morse, Guaraldi, and Hatch. Commissioner Nottonson reported that the Revenue Committee is continuing to communicate by e-mail and are exchanging ideas. He suggested the department make an attempt to invite Massachusetts's residents as well as New Hampshire residents to the Becoming an Outdoors Woman weekend held in September each year. Director Perry stated that there is no objection to exchanging participant lists amongst states. Director Perry reported that he has a draft memorandum of agreement with the Wildlife Federation on his desk for review.

In addition, Commissioner Nottonson suggested utilizing signs to get Department messages out to the public. Commissioner Nottonson suggested that Director Perry meet with the New Hampshire Automobile Dealers Association to discuss possibly utilizing signs to display Department messages. Commissioner Tichy suggested the committee invite Judy Stokes, Chief, Public Affairs Division, and pertinent staff to a meeting to assist in compiling what those messages should be. Commissioner Nottonson suggested possibly displaying a reminder about the youth waterfowl, deer, and turkey hunting days or any other important messages. He further reported that he has been in contact with Ducks Unlimited and they are willing to make some donations for Department programs where applicable. Director Perry suggested that the next step be to meet with a representative from Ducks Unlimited and invite Ed Robinson, Waterfowl Biologist, to sit in on the meeting to obtain some guidelines.

COMMISSIONERS REPORTS
Commissioner Phillipson reported that he has received calls of concern regarding the bear kill and that the State is near or above its projected goal. Steve Weber, Chief, Wildlife Division, reported that the kill is slightly over 500, which is higher than expected, however, the department is not overly concerned at this point.

Commissioner Russell reported that he has received calls relative to 4 wheeler trails and where individuals can go to ride. Commissioner Tichy requested that Major Tim Acerno provide a list to Commissioner Russell of locations of trails and if he does not have the information, possibly the Trails Bureau would have that information. In addition, Commissioner Russell reported that he received a call from a constituent regarding the guidelines for obtaining a hunting license, as the individual was not able to purchase a hunting license because he was not a resident of the State for a period of 6 months. He stated that there should be some other guidelines regarding the issue as this could cause the Department to lose revenue.

Commissioner Clarke stated that we have competing uses for land. He stated that the number of ATV's and snowmobiles are expanding at a rapid rate, which is good for the tourism industry and also brings revenue into the Department. He suggested that the Department look at ways on how to better cooperate with riders and enforce regulations so that the standard 10% of people don't ruin it for the other 90%. Commissioner Clarke stated that he intends to invite Major Acerno to the next Policy Committee meeting to discuss the issue.

Commissioner Russell reported that he receives numerous calls at home, the majority being law enforcement calls. He requested that in the hunting digest the Department's main phone number be placed above the Commissioners phone numbers. Commissioner Guaraldi suggested switching pages 2 & 5 in the book in hopes of alleviating some of the confusion. Commissioner Nottonson volunteered the Revenue Committee to review the hunting digest and come up with some suggestions to make it more user friendly and provide that list to the Director. Commissioner Tichy suggested having the Policy Committee review the digest prior to the Revenue Committee reviewing it.

Commissioner Tichy reported that Commissioner Nottonson distributed a free National Rifle Association magazine to all Commissioners relative to public access and paying for public lands and easements. Some of the suggestions in the article address the issue of not having a hunting or fishing license, however, a user permit, and stated that he felt it was a great idea for high use areas.


DIRECTOR'S REPORT
Director Perry provided an update on the Region 5 Fisheries Program. He reported that he recently attended 2 meetings, one with the International Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, and the most recent meeting with the Northeast Directors. He reported that the Wayne MacCallum, Director, Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife, gave a legislative committee report stating there is concern at the congressional level and that there may be some measures taken for the 2005 budget to address the fisheries program. It was unanimously decided to write a letter to the Interior Sub-Ccommittee to urge them to try to restore some funding to keep the program running. He stated that if this does not happen we will see significant reductions in the production of salmon. In addition, Director Perry reported that Ecological Services, who handled much of the Nongame work, would face some of the same severe cuts as the fisheries program.

Director Perry reported that he has a meeting with Carol Murray, Commissioner, Department of Transportation on October 21, 2004, to discuss access at Wild Goose. He further reported that he placed a call to the Town of Newbury to request a meeting in the near future to discuss what issues they have in hopes of coming to an agreement. He stated that the Town of Newbury advised him that they do have a consultant to provide them with advise regarding a specific design and to conduct a traffic study to get an idea of how many cars are actually going through town on Rte. 103. Director Perry reported that there currently is a proposal out for an archeological assessment.

Director Perry reported on the status of Lake Winnisquam access. He reported that John Cowan was recently appointed to the Public Water Access Advisory Board. He also reported that the board recently voted to support the Water Street site in Laconia. He stated that the Department is moving forward with some of the assessment work and that the Department of Environmental Services is conducting an environmental hazard assessment on that site. Director Perry reported that the land transfer paperwork is in the works and things are moving along.

Director Perry reported that he received a call from Councilor Raymond Wieczorek stating that there was some concern relative to not having access to the Merrimack River. Director Perry, Dan Lynch, Assistant Director, and Mark Kirouac, Department Engineer, met with one of the selectmen and members of the Conservation Commission Planning Board who seem very interested in a cooperative project to put an access site in that area.

In addition, Director Perry reported that Chuck Miner, Landowner Relations Coordinator, is still very active as far as landowner relations. Chuck recently scheduled a meeting with the New Hampshire Timberland Owners Association to address some concerns. One issue they are concerned about is requiring tree stands to have individuals names and addresses on them. They have run into instances where logging operations that are underway has required loggers to actually cut the tree down and put a card on the stump notifying whomever owns the tree stand of how to retrieve their equipment. The second issue they have is associated with ATV's and them destroying sections of roads requiring excessive and costly road repairs. The Timberland Owners Association is concerned that by this recklessness of private property it will cause lands to be posted. The third issue is related to hunter concentration in the Walpole area throughout the moose season. Discussions are taking place to somehow split the season in some way so there are not large numbers of hunters in the same area at the same time.

CALL TO THE PUBLIC
Bill Carney, audience member, spoke regarding depredation permits and his concern for the individual's information such as name and addresses to be used in other ways.
On behalf of the Commission, Commissioner Tichy congratulated John Cowan on his recent appointment to the Public Water Access Advisory Board and stated that he would be a great asset to the board

Commissioner Normandeau moved to adjourn at 4:11 p.m. and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.


Respectfully submitted,


Sharon Guaraldi, Secretary

Approved: ________________________ Date: _________________________ Ted Tichy, Chairman


NEW HAMPSHIRE FISH AND GAME COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES
SEPTEMBER 15, 2004
FISH AND GAME HEADQUARTERS, 11 HAZEN DRIVE, CONCORD, NH 03301

Commissioners Present: G. Normandeau, W. Morse, J. Jones S. Guaraldi, R. Phillipson, E. Hatch, D. Clarke, N. Russell, T. Tichy, and S. Nottonson.

Commissioners Absent: all present

Executive Director Perry - present

Commission Chair Tichy called the meeting to order at 9:31a.m. Commissioner Tichy opened the meeting with the pledge of allegiance and asked the audience to remain standing for a moment of silence to honor the passing of former Senator George Disnard. After the moment of silence, Commissioner Clarke spoke of his fond memories of the Senator and how they met and became friendly. He stated what he remembers most of George was that he was a true gentleman and public servant. He further stated "we have lost a real friend".

Commissioner Tichy informed the audience that the public is entitled to attend all Commission meetings and when recognized by the Chairman, the public may speak on any item on the agenda.

At this time, 9:37 a.m., Commissioner Hatch moved to go into a Non-Public Session and Commissioner Clarke seconded. A poll was taken of all Commissioners present; Commissioners Clarke, Phillipson, Normandeau, Jones, Hatch, Morse, Nottonson, Russell, Guaraldi, and Tichy all voted "yes" to enter into a Non-Public Session. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Hatch moved to come out of a Non-Public Session at 10:42 a.m., and Commissioner Jones seconded. A poll was taken of all Commissioners. Commissioners Clarke, Phillipson, Normandeau, Jones, Hatch, Morse, Nottonson, Russell, Guaraldi, and Tichy all voted "yes" to come out of Non-Public Session. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

ACTION ITEMS:
1. Commissioner Hatch moved to approve the August Commission Minutes as written and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

2. Commissioner Normandeau moved to accept the donation of a Thompson/Center Omega muzzleloading rifle, estimated value of $425.00, from Thompson Center Arms Co., Inc., and a Ruger M77R MKII centerfire rifle, with an estimated value of $695.00, from Sturm, Ruger and Co., Inc., Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Steve Weber, Chief, Wildlife Division, stated that both organizations have been very supportive of the deer hunter mail survey, a valuable tool used in assessing big game abundance and deer hunter effort. He reported that this is the 13th year the Department has conducted the survey, in addition to the being the 13th year Thompson Center Arms and Sturm, Ruger, and Company have generously donated firearms for prizes in the survey. Commissioner Tichy inquired whether there is any language on the deer hunter survey indicating that there will be a drawing from the returned cards. Steve responded that the cover letter that gets distributed with the survey materials does mention the survey. In addition, Commissioner Tichy inquired if the two organizations have been recognized for all their support over the years. Steve reported that on the 10th anniversary of the survey both organizations were invited to headquarters and presented with plaques. He stated that Thompson Center has their plaque on display in the lobby of their facility and wasn't sure if Sturm, Ruger and Company did the same or not. Commissioner Phillipson commented that it was very gracious of Thompson Center and Sturm Ruger to annually provide these donations.

3. a.) Commissioner Guaraldi moved to go forward with rule changes relative to bear baiting sites as presented and Commissioner Russell seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

b.) Commissioner Phillipson moved to go forward with rule changes to clarify that the state of residency for purposes of the moose lottery application process shall be the person's state of residence, pursuant to RSA 207:1 XXIII, at the deadline date for moose lottery applications, and Commissioner Hatch seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

c.) Steve Weber, Chief, Wildlife Division, presented the request to go forward with rule changes relative to removing the requirement to attend a moose seminar. In place of the mandatory requirement, the Department plans to offer two seminars on a voluntary basis. Each permittee and subpermittee will be asked to sign and return a signed statement that they have read and understand the current year's moose rules by a certain deadline.

Commissioner Nottonson stated that he felt the seminar he attended a few years ago provided very valuable information to hunters. He further suggested having the data from the seminar transferred onto a CD and made available to moose hunters as another method of receiving the information. Steve Weber responded that was exactly the department's intent.

Commissioner Jones inquired as to the reasoning behind this change and stated that he has heard nothing but positive comments regarding moose seminars. Steve responded that a large number of people have attended a seminar as either a permittee or a subpermittee previously and are complaining as to it's repetitiveness. He reported that law enforcement is satisfied with the sign off statement of the hunters as it indicates that they are aware of the the current moose rules and will abide by them. Further, Commissioner Jones suggested implementing a system that if a hunter is selected for a second time that they have the option to sign a waiver in lieu of attending another seminar, stating that he has received the seminar information previously and understands the current moose rules.

Commissioner Russell started that he agreed with Commissioner Jones and suggested having fewer seminars, perhaps making them larger, however, still having some instead of eliminating them all as they provide crucial information to the hunters.

Commissioner Clarke stated that he shares some of the same concerns as Commissioner Jones and that he would possibly feel better knowing that the information would still be made available to hunter on a CD. He further stated that people seem to have enough paperwork and to be able to sit down and watch something may appeal to some and be more convenient.

Commissioner Morse moved to go forward with rule changes relative to removing the requirement to attend a moose seminar, having two seminars the first year on a voluntary basis, involving the permittee and subpermittee to sign and return a signed statement that they have read and understand the current year's moose rules by a certain deadline and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote carried with 7 in favor and 2 opposed (J. Jones, N. Russell)

LATE ITEM
1. Commissioner Phillipson moved to accept the donation of $225.00 from Andorra Forest to offset the cost of printing signs to limit access by hunters on portions of the property and Commissioner Jones seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Nottonson stated that he had one last comment regarding the moose seminar rule change. He suggested formatting the moose seminar cd in such a way that it could be used as a sales tool, welcoming people to New Hampshire and informing them of the moose lottery deadlines, possibly including the various types of licenses that the department offers.

INFORMATION ITEMS
1. Dan Lynch, Assistant Director, provided the monthly financial statement dated August 31, 2004. (See attached)

Commissioner Jones reported that he recently received a call from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Federal Aid Office, stating that the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department received the best audit in the country. He further stated that this is a huge credit to Randy Curtis, Federal Aid Coordinator, and the other financial people within the department. In closing, on behalf of the entire Commission, Commissioner Jones congratulated staff for their outstanding efforts.

2. Dan Lynch, Assistant Director, provided an update on the Affinity credit card program. He stated that the department is seeing approximately $300.00 on a quarterly basis. He stated that he would provide further information after obtaining a copy of the agreement.

3. Director Perry provided an overview of the newly created Landowner Relations Program. He reported that the issue of current use was discused at length previously amongst the Commission. As a result of those discussions, the Policy Committee recommended that the Department place more emphasis on landowner relations and how the department would be able to maintain public use on these lands that are under current use provisions. He announced that through some reogranization within the department, a Land Resources Bureau has been formed, which the department is still in the process of recruiting a Supervisor for. In addition, Director Perry reported that a new position has been created within the Director's Office entitled Administrator, Landowner Relations Program. Chuck Miner has been fulfilling his new role with a great deal of drive. Chuck has attended numerous Commission liaison meetings, which were well received by the public.

Director Perry also announced that some of the responsibilities of the old Access and Engineering Division have been moved under what was formerly known as the Business Office and created a Support Services Division. Kathy LaBonte, Chief, Support Services, graciously agreed to taking on these additional responsibilities and thing are moving along quite smoothly.

At this time, Chuck provided an overview of what he has been working on to date in this new role. He stated that this is a new phase and he is learning a great deal.

He reported that support for the program is high among hunters, anglers, and landowners. Both the Commission and the department have been complimented for the establishment of the program.

In addition, he reported that over the past month, research has begun on existing programs throughout the country and potential funding sources.

He stated that he has attended several meetings to discuss the program and obtain input on problems and potential solutions. Chuck reported that over the next three months he will be meeting with many groups in order to gather input and insight that will be used in the development of the program as well as to begin developing partnerships.

Chuck stated that in order for the program to be successful, a strong partnership will need to be developed between, the department, hunters, anglers and landowners. From the response seen this far into the program it is apparent that there is a strong interest amongst all of the parties to make this happen.

Commissioner Clarke stated that he was thankful for the establishment of this position. He reiterated how important landowner relations is to the mission of the department. In closing, he stated that he is glad to see some time and resources devoted to landowners.

Commissioner Guaraldi stated that she was fortunate to travel with Chuck and thanked the Director as well as Chuck for getting this off the ground. She reported that she has received many positive comments from sportsmen stating that this is a major improvement within the department. In closing, she thanked the Director for moving forward with the establishment of this position.

Commissioner Phillipson reported that Chuck recently attended a liaision meeting in Keene, in which the auidence showed much interest and thought it was a great program. He further reported that the audience felt it was such an important issue that they suggested in order to obtain more easements, possibly raising the habitat fee to $5.00 if $2.50 went strictly to the use of an easement.

Roger Bellerose, audience member, suggested talking to landowners to differetiate between the casual use of an ATV vs. using an ATV in the act of hunting and fishing.

STANDING COMMITTEE REPORTS

POLICY COMMITTEE: Commissioner Clarke, Chair; Commissioners E. Hatch, R. Phillipson, S. Nottonson and J. Jones. Commissioner Clarke stated that the committee has not met, however, a meeting will be scheduled for the near future.

LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE Commissioner Guaraldi, Chair; Commissioner Morse. Commissioner Guaraldi stated that the committee is working to have an organizational meeting prior to the next Commission Meeting. She stated that it is an important committee and asked that other commissioners think about joining the committee. Commissioner Jones agreed to remain on the committee until his resignation and Commissioner Hatch also agreed to sit on the committee during his duration as a holdover.

ISSUES IN THE 21ST CENTURY: Commissioner Phillipson, Chair: Commissioner Clarke, Tichy, and Normandeau. Commissioner Phillipson reported that there were no new issues, therefore, no meeting.

RIVERS COMMITTEE: Commissioner Jones; Commissioner Jones stated that this is an important committee which requires having a Commissioner who is willing to attend the meetings, approximately 4 meeting per year. He further reported that the committee deals with all the rivers in the state, in addition to important issues that the Commission needs to be involved in. Commissioner Tichy asked the Commission to think about who might be interested in taking his place. Commissioner Normandeau inquired as to what the position entailed. Commissioner Morse stated that he would consider taking over the Commission's role on this committee and would get back to the Chairman as to his decision.

LAKES COMMITTEE: Commissioner Guaraldi; Commissioner Guaraldi reported that the committee visited Lake Sunapee and enjoyed the demonstration on how water quality testing is conducted. She further reported that being on this committee is an educational experience for her. The next meeting is scheduled for Friday, September 17, 2004.

AWARDS COMMITTEE: Commissioners Jones, Tichy, and Hatch. Department staff: D. Preve, J. Stokes, and M. Garabedian. Commissioner Jones stated that there was no meeting, therefore, no report.

COMMISSIONERS REPORTS
Commissioner Nottonson reported that the Revenue Committee is currently communicating by e-mail at the present time, exchanging ideas. He stated that a formal meeting will take place in the near future. In addition, he stated that the committee will have some positive recommendations for next month's meeting. He reported that revenue potential is being reviewed at this point.

Commissioner Guaraldi announced that she recently participated in the Becomming an Outdoor Woman's Program at Rockywold Deep Haven, in Holderness. She reported that 115 women shared some great outdoor opportunities for 3 days and a great time was had by all. She stated that this is an excellent program and staff should be commended for their efforts and dedication.

DIRECTOR'S REPORT
Director Perry reported that on Saturday, September 25th, the Owl Brook Hunter Education Training Facility will be having a dedication ceremony. He stated that the department is proud of the facility and hopes through this facility to expand hunter education and other outdoor education programs.

Director Perry stated that there has not been much change regarding the Wild Goose site at Lake Sunapee since the last Commission Meeting. He stated that the department has a working draft from the consultant regarding road access and that the department is continuing to work on road access at that location.

He reported that with much cooperation and support, access to Lake Winnisquam seems to coming together. He reported that it appears at this time that lands will be donated by the City of Laconia and the only expense will be to cover the replacement of the storage building on that site. He reported that there appears to be no environmental red flags or issues at the present time and estimates that sometime in early October there should be a concept plan compiled. He further reported that possibly by the Summer of 2005 there could be a ribbon cutting ceremony. He stated that it has been a team effort between the Department of Environmental Services and the Department of Transportation to make this happen.

Further, Director Perry reported that it appears that the department is going to require more money than is budgeted to cover employee benefits as well as retiree benefits during FY'05. Director Perry reported that the shortage will be approximately between $320,000 - $420,000, in addition to anticipated savings to balance the budget and cover all these expenses. Director Perry has asked staff to justify equipment purchases and stated that the department will be looking closely at vacancies, possibly holding off filling for a few months, to attempt to offset some of these expenses. Director Perry reported that the biennial budget is being compiled and that a 2.9 million dollar deficit exists. In order to balance revenue and anticipated operating expenses, we are proposing to cut $1.8 million dollars in operating costs and to cover $1.2 million dollars from cash reserves. He further stated that at this point it will not entail any layoffs in personnel. The department will be eliminating some positions that have been vacant for some time. He reported that the cuts could affect the Department's TV Show if an alternate source of money is not found to cover production costs.

Steve Weber, Chief, Wildlife Division, reported that we are having a normal bear season to date, and on target for the season. He reported that the mast crop is somewhat spotty, however, much better than last year.

CALL TO THE PUBLIC
Roger Bellerose, audience member, suggested advertising as a way of trying to reach out to sportsmen and encourage them to purchase a super sportsmens license.

At this time, 11:50 a.m., Commissioner Clarke moved to adjourn and Commissioner Nottonson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Respectfully submitted,

Sharon Guaraldi, Secretary

Approved: ________________________ Date: _________________________
Ted Tichy, Chairman


NEW HAMPSHIRE FISH AND GAME COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES
AUGUST 25, 2004
FISH AND GAME HEADQUARTERS, 11 HAZEN DRIVE, CONCORD, NH 03301

Commissioners Present: G. Normandeau, W. Morse, S. Guaraldi, R. Phillipson, E. Hatch, D. Clarke, N. Russell, T. Tichy, and S. Nottonson.

Commissioners Absent: J. Jones

Executive Director Perry - present

Commission Chair Tichy called the meeting to order at 9:46 a.m. Commissioner Tichy opened the meeting with the pledge of allegiance and informed the audience that the public is entitled to attend all Commission meetings and when recognized by the Chairman, the public may speak on any item on the agenda. In addition, Commissioner Tichy informed the audience that a license suspension hearing would be first on the agenda and then immediately following the remainder of the agenda would be heard.

ACTION ITEMS:
1. Mr. Hardwick's Attorney, John Cronin, immediately requested a continuance of the license suspension hearing in order to better represent his client allowing adequate time to gather information. Attorney Cronin stated that he received notification from his client at 7:45 p.m. Tuesday evening that the hearing would take place on Wednesday. Commissioner Tichy stated that he had a letter in front of him from the department, to Mr. Hardwick, dated July 6th, informing him that the August 18th license suspension hearing was rescheduled to August 25, 2004, at 9:30 a.m. Commissioner Tichy announced that he would poll the Commission to obtain their feelings toward a continuance. At this time, Assistant Attorney General, Peter Roth, Counsel for the Fish and Game Commission, stated that the motion is worth consideration, however, he understands that there are other parties present who may have an interest in this matter and they should be queried as to their feelings toward a continuance. At this time, Commissioner Tichy requested to hear from the other parties in the audience. Larry Fortin, a hunting partner to the victim, Robert LeJacq, stated that he objected to the continuance and felt the matter should be addressed today.

Commissioner Tichy announced that he would like to go forward since Mr. Hardwick had counsel present. He further stated that if there were a question that Mr. Hardwick's Attorney felt he should not answer today, that the Commission would take that into consideration. Commissioner Tichy informed the audience that testimony would be taken from friends and relatives of the victim and of Mr. Hardwick only. Commissioner Tichy stated that after hearing all the testimony, a decision would be made as to whether or not a ruling would be made today.

Commissioner Tichy questioned Mr. Hardwick as to whether or not he had a statement he would like to make to the Commission at this time. Mr. Hardwick replied "no". Commissioner Tichy asked the Commission if they had any questions for Mr. Hardwick. Commissioner Tichy swore in Mr. Hardwick at this time. Commissioner Nottonson asked Mr. Hardwick if he paid his fine and to explain the details of what he did for the 200 hours of required community service. Mr. Hardwick replied that he painted the church in Francestown, New Hampshire and wrote and read the speech at hunter safety classes. Commissioner Nottonson asked if he had kept a log of his community service, consisting of dates and times of activities. Mr. Hardwick responded that he had kept a log while he was on probation, however, wasn't sure if it was on file with the probation officer or not.

Commissioner Clarke stated it was a difficult decision the Commission had to make relative to a serious accident. He stated what would weigh heavily on his mind is to hear from Mr. Hardwick as to what he has learned from this and what his inner feelings are about what had happened. Attorney Cronin stood and stated "Mr. Hardwick is a simple country kid and is like a fish out of water understanding these questions". He further stated that it is an appropriate question and the Commission should get this information. He suggested trying to keep the questions as simple and straight forward as possible and offered to assist in this process. Commissioner Clarke reworded his question "Basically what have you learned from this and do you think that going forward you can be a responsible bearer of firearms"? Mr. Hardwick responded, "Yes, I have learned that you have to be very responsible and that accidents suck." Mr. Hardwick further stated that you should take your time and have positive target identification. Attorney Cronin asked Mr. Hardwick if he cooperated with Sergeant Sampson relative to the investigation. Mr. Hardwick responded "yes". Attorney Cronin informed the Commission that Mr. Hardwick's felony conviction had been annulled on February 25, 2002. Commissioner Tichy responded that the Commission was not aware of that information and does not possess that documentation. Attorney Cronin submitted a copy of the annulment to the Commission. Commissioner Tichy read the annulment aloud:

CERTIFICATE OF ANNULMENT OF ARREST/CONVICTION AND SENTENCE

The State of New Hampshire
v.
John Hardwick
DOB: 03-12-68
Case #93-S-0318
Offense: Negligent Homicide
Date of Offense: November 16, 1992

This is to certify that the Court has found the annulment of the defendant's record of arrest/conviction will assist in defendant's rehabilitation, will be consistent with the public welfare, and is warranted by the defendant's behavior after the arrest and/or conviction; accordingly the Court has ordered that the record of conviction in the above entitled case, and the sentence entered therein, be annulled as of February 25, 2002.

IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and affixed the seal of said Court at Manchester, NH, in said County of Hillsborough.

Date: March 28, 2002

Signed by the Clerk of Court, John M. Safford

Attorney Peter Roth, Commission's Counsel, stated that he is not a criminal prosecutor or defense attorney, however, he questioned on what basis was the annulment was granted. He stated that it would be helpful for the Commission to review the documentation leading to the annulment. Commissioner Clarke asked Attorney Roth to define the difference between an acquittal and an annulment. Attorney Roth stated that it certainly does not mean that Mr. Hardwick was acquitted. Attorney Roth further stated that an annulment simply erases the conviction back to the day that it was made.

Commissioner Russell stated that he is open to hearing today's testimony, however, prior to making an informed decision, he requested to see the speech that Mr. Hardwick wrote and read aloud at hunter education classes as well as view the probation officers report. Commissioner Russell further stated that he had all law enforcements reports, however, would like to see what transpired afterwards.

Commissioner Normandeau raised his hand to ask a question of Sergeant John Sampson, however, Attorney Roth asked that Sergeant Sampson be sworn in first. Commissioner Tichy swore in Sergeant Sampson. Commissioner Normandeau proceeded with his question, asking for Sergeant Sampson's input on the issue. Sergeant Sampson stated that he would have to ask Mr. Hardwick a question. Sergeant Sampson stated that in the summer of 2002, Mr. Hardwick stated that he felt he was not treated fairly. Sergeant Sampson asked him to elaborate and Mr. Hardwick refused. Sergeant Sampson asked Mr. Hardwick again, "do you feel you were treated fairly". Mr. Hardwick responded, "yes". Commissioner Tichy asked Mr. Hardwick if he had any feelings of remorse over the issue, Mr. Hardwick paused, and answered, "oh, yes, I do".

Commissioner Nottonson asked Mr. Hardwick if he had taken a hunter education course prior to the incident. Mr. Hardwick responded, "yes". Commissioner Nottonson asked Mr. Hardwick if he recently took another course. Mr. Hardwick responded "yes". Commissioner Nottonson asked Mr. Hardwick to explain the abstract/chart in the hunter digest relative to legal hunting times and to describe what it means to a hunter. In addition, Commissioner Nottonson asked Mr. Hardwick what the kill zone looks like on a white-tailed deer. Mr. Hardwick responded that legal hunting time is 1/2 hour before sunrise and a 1/2 hour after sunset. In addition, he further responded that the kill zone would be the heart/lung area, located around the chest area. Commissioner Phillipson asked Sergeant Sampson if it was either sex hunting on the day the accident took place or bucks only. Sergeant Sampson responded that it was either sex season.

Commissioner Clarke stated that the Commission should be careful as its responsibility is not to decide whether Mr. Hardwick is guilty or not, as he has already been found guilty by the court. He stated that the Commission is to establish whether or not Mr. Hardwick is sufficiently rehabilitated so he can be a safe person in the New Hampshire woods.
In addition, Commissioner Clarke stated that a class b felony takes away certain rights to possess a firearm. Commissioner Normandeau stated that he agrees with Commissioner Russell, requesting to see documentation in the way of public service and the court annulment. In addition, he stated that this is a situation where an individual was shot and killed and while some punishment was given, no time was served. He stated that the individual, who was shot, died, and without having any documentation other than Mr. Hardwick's hunting license revocation it would be hard to make an informed decision. He further stated that every action has its consequences and those consequences may extend for the rest of your life. Commissioner Normandeau stated, "It seems at the moment, the only long-term consequence has been the removal of a hunting license." At this time, Attorney Cronin renewed his request for a continuance of the hearing. He stated that he would do his best to obtain the records, however, he could not promise to produce them due to the time passage. Attorney Cronin stated that Mr. Hardwick does have other consequences, "he has to live with this on his conscience for the rest of his life." He further stated that Mr. Hardwick may not appear to be the most articulate man and may not feel comfortable speaking in public, however, he would not be here without having his hat in his hand. Commissioner Tichy responded that he wanted to take more testimony today, however, he would consider his request for a continuance.

At this time, Commissioner Tichy swore in Mr. Fortin, who stood and read aloud a letter written by Matthew Yakovakis, the victim's hunting partner who could not be in attendance.

This letter is submitted as testimony in the hearing scheduled for Wednesday, August 25, 2004, at 9:30 a.m., regarding the petition of John R. Hardwick to get his hunting license back. I regret that I cannot attend this hearing in person to deliver testimony.

Mr. Hardwick shot and killed one of my best friends and hunting buddies, Robert LeJacq. What has always bothered me since the accident is that it could have been me that was shot. I had been hunting with Mr. LeJacq the day before, and for several days prior, in the same area.

The shooting has been classified as a hunting accident. Perhaps it was unintentional, however, the fact remains it was the result of gross negligence with a deadly firearm. On that fateful evening, Mr. Hardwick could not discern whether his target was a man or a deer. This is where it should have stopped! Instead, Mr. Hardwick made a crucial decision to take a chance. He decided to take a chance, ignoring the possibility that it might be a human being and that he might kill that human being. The rest is history.

This case goes beyond the felony conviction. There must be a consequence far beyond a legal felony conviction, which by now has probably been expunged. Hunting is not a necessity or a right, it is a privilege. Mr. Hardwick forfeited this privilege the night he decided to take a chance with Mr. LeJacq's life. Not being able to hunt for the rest of his life will not do harm to Mr. Hardwick. Certainly, as a hunter myself, I can understand that Mr. Hardwick will always lament and wish that he could hunt again. But this is what consequence and punishment is. It is the denial of something one wishes he could have or participate in. The deadly result of Mr. Hardwick's "chance" deserves the maximum punishment. Mr. Hardwick should be denied hunting privileges in the State of New Hampshire for the rest of his life. The New Hampshire Fish and Game Commission should not grant this petition. To do so would have a grave insult to the friends and loved ones of Mr. Le Jacq, and indeed to his memory.

Respectully submitted,
Matthew Yakovakis

Mr. Fortin, hunting partner of Mr. LeJacq, stated that he couldn't understand how anyone could mistake a human being for a deer. He stated that a human being has a vertical line and a deer has a horizontal line. He further stated that a deer has large ears and if you are a hunter, you know that the head is constantly moving. In closing, he stated, "How anyone could mistake a human being for a deer is beyond me." Commissioner Tichy thanked Mr. Fortin for his testimony.

Commissioner Guaraldi questioned Mr. Hardwick as to the number of hunter education classes he attended and asked him to be specific. Mr. Hardwick responded "about 10."

At this time, Commissioner Tichy granted a continuance of the hearing and asked Mr. Hardwick's Attorney, Mr. Cronin, to gather other documentation such as records/reports, a report from Mr. Hardwick's Probation Officer consisting of what was specifically done for community service, a copy of the speech Mr. Hardwick wrote and read aloud at hunter education courses, including the dates and times of the hunter education classes. In addition, Commissioner Tichy requested a report from the Hillsborough court on the annulment decision, perhaps a copy of the petition for the annulment as well. Attorney Cronin responded that it may be difficult to obtain that documentation as once the annulment order is granted, the records are sealed, and as such, the don't exist. He further stated that the court based its decision upon whatever information presented in February of 2002, sufficiently established that it was in Mr. Hardwick's rehabilitative process to grant the petition.

In addition, Commissioner Tichy stated that the Commission does not have a copy of a letter from Mr. Hardwick petitioning the department to reinstate his license. Colonel Gray responded that he had a copy. Attorney Cronin requested to speak to the Commission's Counsel, Peter Roth to streamline the information.

Commissioner Tichy adjourned the hearing at 10:31a.m., and announced that the continuance will take place on September 15th at 9:30 a.m.

At this time, 10:33 a.m., Commissioner Tichy requested a 5-minute recess.

The meeting reconvened at 10:37 a.m.

2. Commissioner Normandeau moved to approve the June Commission minutes and Commissioner Morse seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

3. Consent Items - The following items have been grouped together and are hereby noticed as consent agenda items to expedite action on routine matters, which may not require public discussion. The Commission will be asked to vote to approve these matters as presented. Commission members may remove certain items if further public input or discussion is deemed necessary.

Commissioner Morse moved to approve the following donations and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

(a.) Donation in the amount of $250 from Edmund L. Heneault, to be utilized for the Denton Hartley Intern Program.

(b) Donation in the amount of $25 in memory of Ray Angers, from his daughter, Michele Angers of Lebanon.

(c) Donation of miscellaneous fishing supplies, valued at $1,385.92, from Wal-Mart.

Commissioner Russell questioned what the Denton Hartley Intern Program involves. Judy Stokes, Chief, Public Affairs Division, gave an overview of the program. She stated that Denton Hartley worked for the department for a number of years and then became a well-respected outdoor writer. She reported that many of his friends and associates made donations in his name, which have been utilized in the past to hire an individual who is near the completion of college and possess good journalism and communication skills. She further reported that the individual works with the department for the summer, 1 or 2 days a week, to obtain practical experience to move forward in their career. In closing, she stated that at the present time the fund has been exhausted and this donation of $250 will be a great step towards replenishing the fund.

4. Commissioner Phillipson moved to approve the donations of conservation easements on two parcels (144 acres) and the purchase of a conservation easement on a third parcel (101 acres) in Randolph and Gorham, NH, from the Robert C. Potter Trust and Commissioner Russell seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

There was concern whether the land would remain forever open to hunting and fishing for the general public and Charlie Bridges, Habitat and Diversity Coordinator, confirmed "yes" it would remain open. Commissioner Phillipson inquired whether these properties have any ATV trails or snowmobile trails crossing them. Charlie responded that on the southern end of the property there is an old railroad line that has been converted to the rails and trails program and is utilized by other recreational users. He further reported that there might be a snowmobile trail on the northern end as well.

5 Commissioner Hatch moved to approve the expenditure of $11,000 from the Fish Habitat Fund to restore fisheries habitat in Archery Pond located in Bear Brook State Park, Allenstown, and Commissioner Normandeau seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Scott Decker, Programs Supervisor, Inland Fisheries Division, reported that the drawdown is scheduled to take place on or about October 16, 2004. Scott further reported that the placement of boulders in the pond would provide for fish cover. He stated that dredging will take place to make the pond deeper, and the addition of gravel to the pond will improve the potential for the spawning of brook trout. In closing, Scott reported that in the future there could be potential to improve access for disabled anglers. Commissioner Hatch stated that this is something we have been looking forward to getting done for some time. He stated that his friend who is disabled fishes this pond and there really needs to be more places like this for the disabled to fish.

6. After much discussion, Commissioner Clarke moved to approve the October, November, and December Commission Meeting dates, being the third Wednesday of each month, commencing at 1:00 p.m. vs. 9:30 a.m., and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Date Time Location
October 20, 2004 1:00 p.m. Fish and Game Headquarters, Concord
November 17, 2004 1:00 p.m. Fish and Game Headquarters, Concord
December 15, 2004 1:00 p.m. Fish and Game Headquarters, Concord

7. Sandy Falicon, Legislative/Rules Coordinator, provided an overview on the upcoming legislative schedule. She stated that at this point there are no department proposals ready for consideration. She further updated the Commission on rulemaking proceedings. Sandy distributed copies of the final proposal for changes to license and permit forms in Chapter 1100, a draft initial proposal of Chapter 1500 relative to OHRV rules and initial proposal for wildlife control operators and other trapping rules. In addition, she indicated that a draft initial proposal for guide rules would be forthcoming.

At this time, Steve Weber, Chief, Wildlife Division, provided an overview of the proposed wildlife rule changes to the Commission and stated that he would bring the changes before the Commission at the September 15th meeting.

INFORMATION ITEMS
1. Dan Lynch, Assistant Director, provided the monthly financial statement dated July 31, 2004. (See attached) Commissioner Phillipson inquired as to what the profit from the users of the Maryland Bank National Association (MBNA) credit card is to date.

2. Steve Perry, Chief, Inland Fisheries Division, gave an overview on the recently completed survey of New Hampshire anglers. Steve stated that there has been a 4% decline in fishing participation nationally over the last decade (1991 vs. 2001), while in New Hampshire participation in fishing declined by 16% during the same timeframe. Since 2001, New Hampshire has experienced an additional 15% drop in resident fishing participation, which coincided with a 48% increase in the cost of a license over the two-year period (2002 and 2003). Steve reported that the initial evaluation results of the pilot marketing program undertaken by the Department to increase fishing participation indicated that lapsed resident anglers rated the high cost of a fishing license as the second highest constraint to fishing. In an effort to be more responsive to its resident angling constituencies, the Department initiated a survey of New Hampshire resident anglers to determine their participation in fishing, their satisfaction with fishing, their license purchasing behaviors, their typical fishing behaviors, and their likelihood to purchase various types of licenses at specific costs. The study entailed a telephone survey of resident anglers who had purchased a New Hampshire fishing license within the previous four years.

In closing, Steve stated that the Department is trying to employ new strategies to involve less time, such as a brochure stating where individuals can go to fish, what to use for equipment, and what could be caught at that particular body of water.

STANDING COMMITTEE REPORTS

POLICY COMMITTEE: Commissioner Clarke, Chair; Commissioners E. Hatch, R. Phillipson, S. Nottonson and J. Jones. Commissioner Clarke stated that there was a brief meeting prior to the Commission Meeting.

LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE Commissioner Jones, Chair; Commissioners Guaraldi and Morse. Commissioner Tichy asked Commissioner Guaraldi to take over the Chairman's seat on the legislative committee and she accepted. Commissioner Guaraldi reported that there would be a meeting of the committee at the end of September, date and time to be announced.

ISSUES IN THE 21ST CENTURY: Commissioner Phillipson, Chair: Commissioner Clarke, Tichy, and Normandeau. Commissioner Phillipson reported that there were no new issues, therefore, no meeting.

RIVERS COMMITTEE: Commissioner Jones; Commissioner Jones was absent, therefore, no report. Commissioner Tichy announced that Commissioner Jones needs to be replaced on this committee, as he will be resigning in October. Commissioner Tichy asked the Commission to think about who might be interested in taking his place. He further reported that the committee usually meets once a month.

LAKES COMMITTEE: Commissioner Guaraldi; Commissioner Guaraldi reported that she was absent from the last meeting as she was out of state. She further reported that the next meeting is scheduled for Friday, August 27th.

AWARDS COMMITTEE: Commissioners Jones, Tichy, and Hatch. Department staff: D. Preve, J. Stokes, and M. Garabedian. Commissioner Jones was absent, therefore, no report.

COMMISSIONERS REPORTS
Commissioner Tichy reported that Commissioner Nottonson would like to establish a new committee to look into new funding methods for the department and has asked that Commissioner Morse, Commissioner Guaraldi, and Commissioner Hatch, sit on that committee as well.

Commissioner Tichy inquired if any of the Commissioners had an outstanding item that they wished to discuss at this time. Commissioner Clarke announced that in addition to being a Fish and Game Commissioner, that he is a Sullivan County Commissioner. He reported that the county owns a great deal of land and he feels somewhat frustrated that many individuals do not get to use or enjoy it. He reported that he is aware Chuck Miner has received a new assignment in terms of coordinating with landowners. He further reported that he has asked Chuck to attend his meeting on September 21st, with some individuals from the Cooperative Extension, The Student Conservation Association, to possibly develop some recreational uses for the property so it is enjoyed more.

Commissioner Hatch inquired whether the ramp at Baxter Lake is on the schedule in the near future. He reported that he has been receiving calls from landowners who live on the lake questioning the status. Director Perry stated that he believes it is on the construction schedule, however, would confirm and get back to Commissioner Hatch.

Commissioner Russell, stated that this is out of his area, however, there is no Commissioner for Belknap County. He reported that there has been much discussion relative to the ramp at Winnisquam. Commissioner Russell questioned whether there has been any discussion relative to selecting an alternate site. Commissioner Tichy asked Commissioner Russell to wait for Director Perry to address the topic later in the meeting.

Commissioner Phillipson reported that at the public hearings, especially in Keene, there were many individuals from sporting clubs willing to assist with night pheasant stocking. Commissioner Phillipson further reported that it was relayed to the clubs that the department was open to that suggestion. Commissioner Phillipson asked that if the department wished to take advantage of the offer, to notify him in the near future so arrangements could be made.

DIRECTOR'S REPORT
Director Perry gave an update on the reorganization proposal previously discussed. He stated that the department received final approval of the request, effective July 9, 2004. He further reported that Chuck Miner is now in a new position, titled, Landowner Relations Coordinator. He stated that this is a new program and it should be interesting to see where it goes. Director Perry stated that with the information from Commissioner Clarke this morning relative to the property in Sullivan County, possibly something could be done there. Director Perry stated that he is hopeful the program will do some proactive things in working with landowners to maintain access and perhaps open up some areas that may have been posted.

In addition, he stated that the new Land Resources Bureau supervisor's position has not been filled yet and the department is in the process of recruiting. Further, he reported that Kathy LaBonte is not only the Business Manager, she is also the Support Services Division Chief, with responsibilities for facilities construction and maintenance, and fleet operations.

Director Perry provided an update on Sunapee. He stated that the Wild Goose site is still being looked at. He reported that the Lakes Association has an attorney who has requested all records dating back to the original purchase pertaining to Sunapee. He stated that the department is currently responding to that request. Director Perry stated that there are two major outstanding issues at Sunapee, one being the highway access issue and the other being the archeological assessments and cultural reviews that need to be completed. He stated that the department has been working with a consultant to get to the bottom line and as to what the technical requirements are of getting onto the highway. He further stated that he is optimistic that the department will be able to work with the Department of Transportation and arrive at a solution that will not be as expensive as many people have proposed, including the department. He stated that the department is moving forward and feels there may have a technical solution that will address the safety issues.

Director Perry reported that the last access on Winnisquam was recently taken away. He stated that Martels was the last remaining access on the lake and that Ralph Longevin, who owns the Martel site, came to a point where he decided he just couldn't deal with all the aspect of operating the site and decided to close it. Director Perry stated access was regained in the quickest time ever with all the public interest and support, "things seemed to happen". Director Perry reported that Governor Craig Benson arranged for a meeting with the owner and promised to move as quickly as possible to find a public site and get it constructed in the area. He announced that the state park site has been under consideration for some time. He reported that 3 locations have been looked at from the department's standpoint for constructing an access and all 3 have had drawbacks. He reported that one of the bigger drawbacks was the lack of public support for going to a site in the state park for a tailored boat access. He stated that there is a great deal of support, including from the City, the Lakes Association, Chamber of Commerce, and number of others to utilize a publicly owned site on Water Street, in the City of Laconia. Director Perry reported that he has a meeting on site tomorrow to sees if it is feasible. He further stated that he is optimistic, as it is very seldom that you get all parties who want the access; the boaters and the fishermen, aligned with the Lake Association, the City, other public interest groups and local business all who want it done and in a certain area.

Director Perry provided a brief update on the status of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Fisheries Program. He reported that the budget is at a level that won't allow the monies to continue to assist some of our fisheries programs. He stated that there might be a Senate version that may restore some of the monies. He reported that he had a conference call yesterday with all the states in the northeast and the Fish and Wildlife Service. He stated that the Regional Director and staff are working so that the department will not lose programs this coming year and will be in a position to restore the program to the full capacity in the year 2006, providing the monies come through in a way that they are hoping they will. He further reported that it would appear that there will be reduced production and reduced stocking, however, no complete closures.

CALL TO THE PUBLIC
John Cowan, Northeast Bass Association, stood and spoke relative to regaining access to Winnisquam and congratulated the department for it's quick response in doing so. He stated that it was evident that all parties involved did their part.

In addition, he stated that relative to the fisheries information that Steve Perry, Chief, Inland Fisheries Division provided. He questioned if there were any documents that reflected when the department had a warm water license.

He further stated that access is a very key issue and if there were more access sites the department may sell more fishing license. He suggested moving free fishing day into summer vacation period, possibly getting more people involved.

Steve Perry responded that when the warm water license was sold, the department sold approximately 5,000 a year. He reported that records indicate that those individuals who purchased a warm water license in the past opted to purchase the all species when the warm water license was eliminated.

Suzanne Fournier, Protection of Animals, inquired as to the Commissioners liaison meeting. Commissioner Hatch stated that there is a meeting at the Region 3 Fish and Game Office in Durham the Sunday prior the Commission Meeting, which is the third Wednesday of each month. Commissioner Clarke responded that he has a meeting the last Wednesday evening of each month at the Sullivan County Sportsmen's Club in Claremont. Commissioner Phillipson stated that he has a meeting on the third Monday evening of each month at Region 4 Fish and Game Office in Keene. Commissioner Morse stated that his meeting for September would be on the 8th at Fox Forest in Hillsborough.

Suzanne stated that she believes the state should leave the purchase and stocking of ring-necked pheasant to the private sector. She stated that it a waste of staff time and resources. Further, she stated that she is asking the Commission to issue a recall of its request of the Department staff to study the feasibility of stocking other non-native birds in New Hampshire. She distributed two documents to the Commission for their review. She read a list of reasons to discontinue the program and stated that salaries, mileage, and additional staff time add up.

Bill Carney, Outdoor Writer, inquired whether the electronic turkey device rulemaking proposal would go to public comment. Commissioner Tichy responded that it would be coming before the Commission at next month's meeting.

At this time, 12:38 p.m., Commissioner Normandeau moved to adjourn and Commissioner Morse seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Respectfully submitted,

Sharon Guaraldi, Secretary

Approved: ________________________ Date: _________________________
Ted Tichy, Chairman


The July 2004 Commission meeting was cancelled.

NEW HAMPSHIRE FISH AND GAME COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES
June 23, 2004

Fish and Game Headquarters, 11 Hazen Drive, Concord, NH 03301

Commissioners Present: G. Normandeau, W. Morse, S. Guaraldi, R. Phillipson, E. Hatch, D. Clarke, J. Jones, N. Russell, T. Tichy, and S. Nottonson.

Commissioners Absent: all present

Executive Director Perry - present

Commission Chair Hatch called the meeting to order at 9:35 a.m. Commissioner Hatch opened the meeting with the pledge of allegiance and informed the audience that the public is entitled to attend all Commission meetings and when recognized by the Chairman, the public may speak on any item on the agenda except items for which a public hearing under RSA 541:A has been noticed and/or held, and or the period for public comment is open or has been closed. Commissioner Hatch requested the audience join in a moment of silence to honor the passing of Richard Schanda, longtime friend of the Department and well known Outdoor Writer for New Hampshire.

At this time, Commissioner Hatch recognized Bill Carney, Outdoor Writer, Roger Bellerose, Carl Rowell, Carl Hoyt, Dan Hall, Bob Harris, Outdoor Writer, Allen MacNeil, Chairman, Public Water Access Advisory Board, Carroll Pineo, Former Commission Chairman, and Patricia Costa.

ACTION ITEMS:
1. Commissioner Clarke moved to approve the May Commission Minutes as written, and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

2. Commissioner Guaraldi moved to approve the proposed Commission Meeting dates of August 25, 2004 and September 15, 2004, and tabled the remainder of the proposed dates until the August Commission Meeting and Commissioner Russell seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

3. Dan Lynch, Assistant Director, provided the monthly financial statement dated May 31, 2004.

4. Dan Lynch, Assistant Director, provided an on overview of the methodology and application of Internal Administrative Charge to numerous dedicated accounts.

5. Commissioner Phillipson moved to approve 4 donations totaling $55.00, to be utilized by the Moose Management Program, and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Alfred Fournier, Canaan, VT - $15.00
John Kadlik, Fitzwilliam, NH - $10.00
Richard Bujnowski, Jaffrey, NH - $10.00
Ralph & Kelly Goodrich, Berwick, ME- $20.00

6. Commissioner Morse moved to approve the expenditure of up to $50,520 from the Waterfowl Dedicated Account to fund the operational budget for FY'05, and Commissioner Russell seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

7. Commissioner Phillipson moved to approve the expenditure of up to $20,000 from the Turkey Dedicated Account to fund the operational budget for FY'05, and up to $5,000 to partially fund a public attitudes survey as a component of the big game management planning process and Commissioner Morse seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

7-a (Late Item) Commissioner Tichy moved to approve the annual donation of $2,500 from Public Service of New Hampshire, to be utilized by the Nongame Program, and Commissioner Clarke seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Steve Weber, Chief, Wildlife Division reported that the new record for the spring turkey harvest is 2,668, beating the old record of 2,631. Steve reported that the turkey flock seems to be in good shape and that biologist will be collecting reproductive data through the summer to assess for the fall season.

Commissioner Hatch inquired as to what affect the heavy rains in May had on the waterfowl and grouse reproduction. Steve stated that it was too early to tell at this point. He reported that the department was concerned, however, different parts of the state received different amounts of precipitation and that staff will be assessing the issue over the course of the summer. Bob Harris, audience member, stated that coyotes seem to be detrimental and that the department does not seem to do much about it. Steve responded that the coyote certainly does have an affect on game species. He stated that the Department has the most liberal hunting and trapping seasons on coyote, more so than any of the species that are regulated in the state. He further stated that the coyote is a component of the wildlife diversity of the state and they are not going anywhere. Mr. Harris suggested putting a bounty on coyotes since the population is getting out of hand. Steve responded that studies conducted in the western part of the country indicate that bounties have been known to have very little impact on the overall population. It has been shown that to have a negative impact long-term on the number of coyotes it would require 70% or more be removed in order to depress the population.

11. (Heard out of sequence due to time constraints) Commissioner Jones requested that the report of the Awards Committee be considered at this time. Commissioner Clarke moved to approve the NH Fish and Game Commission Awards of Excellence criteria consisting of seven awards, (below), and Commissioner Tichy seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

1. Outstanding Achievement - Recognizing any individual, group, organization, club,
foundation or agency that has excelled in efforts to promote, enhance or benefit fish,
wildlife or marine resources or the Department's mission through any variety of
involvement.

2. Youth Conservationist - Recognizing any individual, 18 years of age or younger, who has excelled in efforts to benefit fish, wildlife or marine resources or the Department's mission through any variety of involvement.

3. Communication - Recognizing any outdoor communicator or writer, media source (radio, television, magazine, newsletter or periodical) that has written or published articles or materials beneficial to public understanding about fish, wildlife or marine resources as they relate to the Department's mission. Said recipient shall be judged on fairness, accuracy, timeliness, balance and quality of reporting.

4. Conservation Organization - Recognizing any organization, group, foundation, or agency that has excelled in efforts to enhance the welfare of fish, wildlife, and marine resources, and supporting achievement of the Department's mission. Each recipient shall be judged on their efforts to promote the wise use of natural resources for their recreational or economic value.

5. Volunteer - Recognizing any individual who, as a volunteer with the Department, has excelled in efforts to support and achieve the Department's mission.

6. Habitat Stewardship - Recognizing any organization, non-governmental entity,
individual or corporation which has excelled in the enhancement, conservation or creation of land management practices beneficial to New Hampshire's fish, wildlife and marine resources and the Department's mission.

7. Land-Owner Appreciation - Recognizing any individual who excelled in the
preservation or enhancement of opportunities for public use on private property as it
benefits the Department's mission.

Commissioner Tichy moved that the Commission requests the department to obtain approval for an annual Commission recognition ceremony commencing in 2005, and to include funding for future programs in the department's budget and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Jones announced that the highest award recognizes outstanding contributions towards the enhancement of the Fish and Game Department's mission. The Committee is recommending that these awards be given out at an appropriate time and place that will most enhance the effectiveness of the presentation to the recipient, or recipients, and to the general public. One of the primary objectives of this awards program is to show the public the value of active participation in helping to achieve the state's fish and wildlife goals and objectives.

Commissioner Jones moved that on this day, the twenty-third day of June, Two Thousand and Four, the Commission approve the title of the highest award of the Commission, which will be forever called the "Ellis Hatch Wildlife Commission Award of Excellence", and that it be given to an individual who has made the greatest contributions over his/her lifetime towards the enhancement of the Fish and Game mission; and this person shall have devoted him/herself to the preservation of the state's fish and wildlife, and shall after careful review by the Commission, be deemed worthy of this extremely high honor, and Commissioner Tichy seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Further, Commissioner Jones stated what an honor and rare privilege it was to present the first Ellis Hatch Award to its namesake, Commission Chairman, Ellis R. Hatch, for his many years of outstanding contributions to the enhancement of fish and wildlife, and marine resources.

At this time, Commissioner Jones requested that Commissioner Hatch accompany
him at the podium along with his wife, Barbara. Commissioner Jones presented Commissioner Hatch with the award, consisting of a plaque with a photo of Commissioner Hatch fishing in his float tube. The plaque read as follows:

New Hampshire Fish and Game Commission
AWARD OF EXCELLENCE
is hereby awarded to

Ellis Hatch

Hereafter known as the Ellis Hatch Award of Excellence
In recognition of a lifetime of dedicated service to the
conservation of New Hampshire fish and wildlife and to the
promotion and advancement of public understanding and
enjoyment of these resources

June 2004

Commissioner Jones thanked the Hatch family for attending this memorable event.

Further, Commissioner Jones moved to approve the below resolution honoring Commissioner Hatch for his years of dedicated service to the department and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. The resolution read as follows:

In Honor of Twenty-five Years of Vision and Involvement
Proposing the Renaming of Jones Brook WMA to the
Ellis Hatch Wildlife Management Area

Whereas, Ellis R. Hatch, Jr., Strafford County Fish and Game Commissioner for 25 years, is known to be a man with a strong conservation vision, dedication and action; and

Whereas, he learned of the availability of a special acreage in Strafford County offering deeryards, wild trout and unparalleled beauty, and immediately began the process to protect it for future generations; and

Whereas, not only was he successful in working with the Department to acquire the original acreage, but continued to seek opportunities to grow and further protect this jewel until it grew by six additional parcels from 850 to 1,493 acres; and

Whereas, as northern Strafford and southern Carroll counties continue to grow, so does the appreciation for his conservation vision and the opportunities it affords people to enjoy New Hampshire's great outdoors; and

Whereas, Commissioner Hatch has spent hours on the landing at Jones Pond tying flies and giving them to visitors along with a lesson about the entomology of the pond and what they could expect to find there and in the surrounding woods; and

Whereas, this humble and kind man has been so much more to the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department and its constituency over the last quarter-century than just an appointed official and his contributions too numerous to mention;

Now Therefore Be It Resolved, the New Hampshire Fish and Game Commission hereby resolves to re-name the Jones Brook Wildlife Management Area to honor the essence of a conservation legend, Commissioner Ellis R. Hatch, Jr.

Unanimously adopted by the New Hampshire Fish and Game Commission this twenty-third day of June, Two Thousand and Four.

____________________________
James M. Jones, Vice Chairman
NH Fish and Game Commission

____________________________
Lee E. Perry, Executive Director
NH Fish and Game Department

Director Perry introduced Speaker of the House, Gene Chandler and Representative Eric Stohl, who were in attendance representing the legislature. Speaker Chandler congratulated Commissioner Hatch and read aloud the following letter:

Dear Director Perry,

In recognition of Commissioner Ellis Hatch, his many years of service on the Fish and Game Commission, his dedication to the preservation and development of public land for the sportsman, and his willingness to share his knowledge and interest in New Hampshire's wildlife, I, along with Senator Lou D'Allesandro and Representative Eric Stohl, intend to file legislation to rename the Jones Brook Wildlife Management Area to the Ellis Hatch Wildlife Management Area.

I believe this would be a fitting tribute to the man that has supported and encouraged the use of this area by New Hampshire sportsmen and nature enthusiasts. It is through his efforts that this area has been preserved for future generations. Having it named for him will be a reminder to all those that enter and a declaration of gratitude from an appreciative state.

This legislation will be filed in the fall of 2004 and hopefully acted upon in early 2005. I will keep you informed of the progress.
Sincerely,

Gene Chandler, Speaker of the House

Further, Representative Eric Stohl, presented Commissioner Hatch with a House of Representative Declaration that read:

Whereas, Ellis R. Hatch, Jr., has been a strong advocate of the New Hampshire's wildlife and natural resources during his long-time service as a member of the New Hampshire Fish and Game Commission, most recently serving as Commission Chairman, and;

Whereas, Ellis R. Hatch, Jr, has been a dedicated representative of the sportsmen across the state and his years of experience has served as an invaluable resource and;

Whereas, Ellis R. Hatch, Jr., founded the Hackle and Tackle Club in his home town of Rochester, and shares his love of fly-fishing with residents from throughout the granite state as an instructor for the Willow Brook Fly-Tiers, Hunters Angler Supplies, and Let's Go Fishing Program, of the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department.

Whereas, Ellis R. Hatch, Jr., is an honorary member of the New Hampshire Conservation Officers Relief Association and was recipient of the 2002 New Hampshire Wildlife Federation Lifetime Achievement Award and;

Whereas Ellis R. Hatch, Jr., was awarded the New Hampshire State Council on the Arts, Governor's Folk Heritage Award in 2003, for his contributions as a fly-tieing master and mentor.

Now, therefore, be it resolved, declared by the Speaker of the New Hampshire House of Representatives, that Commissioner Ellis R. Hatch Jr., received the highest accolade for his exemplatory and dedicated service to the State of New Hampshire and the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department upon his retirement.

Signed, this Twenty-third day of June, Two Thousand and Four.,

Speaker of the House, Gene G. Chandler,

Representative Henry P. Mock

Representative Eric G. Stohl

At this time, Director Perry announced that in anticipation of the legislation re-naming the Jones Brook Wildlife Management Area to the Ellis R. Hatch Wildlife Management Area, the department's sign shop has been busy preparing the newly created sign that will be housed at the entrance of Jones Brook. The sign was unveiled in the back of the conference room that read: Ellis R. Hatch Wildlife Management Area.

Commissioner Hatch stated "I'm speechless, and did not expect all this". He thanked everyone for their support over the years and stated what a pleasure it was working with department staff. He reported that he has worked with approximately 75 Commissioners over the years while serving on the Commission, who each made big contributions to the sportspeople, the resources, and the Department. He further stated, "Just to be one of them has been an honor and a privilege that I will not easily forget".

Commissioner Jones presented Commissioner Hatch with a gift from former Commission Chairman, Richard Moquin, consisting of a wooden fly box with an engraved insignia reading "Thanks for being my friend". In addition, Commissioner Hatch received a gift from the Commission, consisting of two books relative to fishing in New Hampshire that were autographed by the author.

Former Commission Chairman, Carroll Pineo, congratulated Commissioner Hatch and stated that he enjoyed his association with him over the last ten years. He further stated there wasn't anyone more dedicated to the State of New Hampshire and it's sportsmen than Commissioner Hatch.

Commissioner Jones personally thanked Commissioner Hatch for being his mentor on the Commission and stated what a great relationship they have had over the years. Commissioner Jones further stated that it was a privilege working with Commissioner Hatch.

8. Commissioner Russell moved to approve the donation of $7,500, from the Meredith Rotary Club, to support fisheries research and management activities, and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Steve stated that the primary focus for utilizing these monies is to maintain the boat used in surveys and to upgrade necessary equipment.

9. Commissioner Clarke moved to approve the expenditure of $26,000 from the Fisheries Habitat Fund to complete related habitat work and Commissioner Normandeau seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

10. Steve Perry, Chief, Inland Fisheries Division, asked the audience to participate in the annual Atlantic Salmon Diary drawing. Three audience members were asked to pick a book from the large box containing all of the salmon diaries. He stated that anglers who return their salmon diary by January 15th are eligible for three prizes. He reported that this program allows the Department to receive pertinent fishery related statistics relative to the broodstock fishery in the Pemigewasset and the Merrimack River System.

1st Prize - Bill Hall, Deerfield - Loomis 9'8wt fly rod
(Donated by the Merrimack Valley and Basil Woods Chapters of Trout Unlimited).

2nd Prize - Peter Lunsford, Dunbarton - Ross Salmon reel
(Donated by Kittery Trading Post through the efforts of the Merrimack Sport Fishery Advisory Board).

3rd Prize - G. Scott Laing, Newton - Framed Atlantic Salmon print
(Donated by the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department.

INFORMATION ITEMS:
1. Sandy Falicon, Legislative/Rules Coordinator, provided an update on current rulemaking for the interim trapping rules and rules related to the Department's license and permit forms, electronic issuance of licenses, and free fishing day. In addition, she distributed the Chapter 500 - OHRV Rules and Chapter 1300 - Guide Rules for Commission review. She reported that the Guide Rules require review and updating, as they will expire in September, 2004. In addition, she stated that within the next month or two she will be compiling a schedule indicating what to expect as far regular rule proposals/changes and upcoming legislative issues. She further stated the potential for having a Legislative Sub-Committee Meeting sometime in late August or early September to prepare for bringing proposals before the Commission for approval in October.

Director Perry announced that a revised press release was distributed correcting the woodcock bag limit from 8 to 3.

2. Steve Perry, Chief, Inland Fisheries Division, gave a brief overview of the public comments received during the Administrative Rulemaking process regarding a variety of changes to regulations related to fishing. Steve reported that 38 people attended the public hearing held on May 26th, and 49 written comments were received by the June 16, 2004 comment deadline. The 4 categories were baitfish, fish importation, fishing tournaments, and general fishing regulations. There were no negative comments received relative to baitfish, therefore, the recommendation to the Executive Director is for the department to proceed with the implementation of the proposals. Secondly, no negative comments were received relative to fish importation, thus, the recommendation to the Executive Director is to proceed with implementation of the proposals. The next series was related to fishing tournaments. Steve reported that several individuals were opposed to the proposal requiring bass to be released from a specified distance from shore after weigh-in, however, the department has enough concerns regarding the need to release these fish in lakes and ponds a minimum of 300 feet from shore and in a river or stream at mid river or stream at least 300 feet away from a launch ramp. The recommendation to the Executive Director is to proceed with implementation as brought forward. Lastly, the category of general fishing regulations had general support and the recommendation to the Executive Director is to proceed with implementation of these proposals as they were brought to public hearing. Steve further reported that there was an additional proposal to implement a daily bag limit for black crappie and white perch putting a 15 fish daily limit on them. Numerous comments were received both for and against the limit. The recommendation to the Executive Director is for the daily bag limit to be increased to 25 fish rather than 15. The next series of proposals relate to delayed harvest. The recommendation to the Executive Director is to proceed with implementation of the proposals. The last proposal was relative to modifying the catch and release season for the Merrymeeting River. The recommendation to the Executive Director is to withdraw the proposal until the department has an opportunity to deal with landowner relation issues and address them prior to submitting the proposal.

PUBLIC COMMENTS
Bob Harris, Outdoor Writer, stated he was very impressed with the rainbow trout he has been catching and complimented Steve Perry and his fishery staff for raising some great fish that are fun to catch. He further stated, "Keep up the good work".

Roger Bellerose, Audience member, spoke relative to a few of his concerns and questions as stated below.

1. The Robotic Deer - his feeling is that it is an entrapment program. He stated that Conservation Officers should focus on answering game thief calls in a timely fashion, such as night shootings and trying to catch the lawbreakers in the act with real game.

2. Tagging Deer - Why does a hunter have to report the kill to the nearest registration station. What is wrong (if you are in a deer pool) with going to your registration station where your deer pool requires? This will eliminate having to do it twice.

3. Reporting Kill on Weekend - Why call State Police? Why is the public not able to call Fish and Game and leave a message on an answering machine, stating your name, address, pertinent information, and require the caller to state when and where that person will be registering the animal on the next business day.

4. Moose Hunting - Road classifications and the difference between classes of roads. He stated that if it is okay to cut timber on White Mountain National Forest roads, than it should be allowed to use the roads to encounter good habitat to hunt moose and deer. He further stated that the gated forest roads should be left open for these hunting purposes.

5. Ice Fishing - Suggested allowing the use of a jig stick while watching for a flag on 2 tip-ups, possibly could increase license sales as it may appeal to more fishermen.

STANDING COMMITTEES:

POLICY COMMITTEE: Commissioner Clarke, Chair; Commissioners E. Hatch, R. Phillipson, S. Nottonson and J. Jones. Commissioner Clarke stated that there was no meeting, therefore, no report.

LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE Commissioner Jones, Chair; Commissioners Guaraldi and Morse. Commissioner Jones departed the meeting early, therefore, no report.

ISSUES IN THE 21ST CENTURY: Commissioner Phillipson, Chair: Commissioner Clarke, Tichy, and Normandeau. Commissioner Phillipson reported that there was no meeting, therefore, no report.

RIVERS COMMITTEE: Commissioner Jones; Commissioner Jones departed early, therefore, no report.

LAKES COMMITTEE: Commissioner Guaraldi; no meeting, therefore, no report.

AWARDS COMMITTEE: Commissioners Jones, Tichy, and Hatch. Department staff: D. Preve, J. Stokes, and M. Garabedian. Commissioner Jones reported earlier as part of Item #11.

OTHER ITEMS FOR COMMISSION CONSIDERATION:
Commissioner Hatch reported that all Commissioners should have received a copy of a letter from David Houghton, President, Audubon Society, thanking the Department and the Commission for its support on SB 487 - relative to lead sinkers. Commissioner Hatch stated that he believes the passage of that legislation is a step in the right direction.

In addition, Commissioner Hatch stated that at last month's Commission Meeting Commissioner Nottonson requested that the Commission prepare a paragraph with suggestions relative to license criteria and asked that the Commission provide a written copy of the paragraph to Commissioner Nottonson as soon as possible as a Committee will be compiled to review the comments in the near future.

Commissioner Nottonson spoke relative to his request of last month and read his interpretation of the data relative to revenue. He stated that his review of income revenues from license sales confirms Director Perry's observations that a slow decline is taking place. In five years, resident license sales are down by 16%, nonresident license sales down by 14%, and females down by 19%, with no obvious reasons for the decline. Internet sales are almost double from 2002 to 2003. He further stated that he strongly feels there is a great deal of opportunity to improve the revenue situation. In closing, he stated that he welcomes further discussion with Commissioners relative to this assignment if they so wish.

Bob Harris, audience member, inquired as to what types of short-term licenses the Department offers as many residents, as well as non-residents, enjoy being able to purchase a 1, 2 or 5 day license for a reasonable fee.

Director Perry responded that short-term licenses are being looked at with some appropriate pricing schedules as the Department is hearing that there is interest from the public. He further stated that this is something that the will be brought before the Commission for consideration for possible legislation this winter. In addition, Director Perry reported that the Department is required to conduct an annual certification of all individuals who hunt and/or fish for federal aid purposes. This process consists of sorting names to confirm that the individual has only been counted once, regardless of how many various licenses the individual purchases. He further reported that the Department is seeing a slide in the number of participants/paid license holders. Steve Perry, Chief, Inland Fisheries Division, has done some calculations based on spring preliminary sales this year and it appears that things may be gradually improving.

Commissioner Russell stated that he recently received his any deer permit from the State of Maine with a hunting application included. He further stated there are many individuals who do not have access to a computer and having a mailing to previous license holders may increase license sales.

Commissioner Guaraldi suggested sending a mailing of hunting and fishing applications to previous license holders as she has received input from constituents stating that if the applications were mailed to them, making it easy for them to simply complete and return the license application, more may participate. She further stated that a fall mailing might work better as hunting and fishing licenses make great holiday gifts.

Commissioner Clarke inquired if Director Perry would comment on the next Public Water Access Advisory Board Meeting scheduled to take place on July 12th, 2004. Director Perry stated that the Department is still moving forward with Sunapee access. He reported that Governor Benson recently appointed Allen MacNeil as the new Chairman of the Public Water Access Advisory Board (PWAAB). He stated that Allen has taken an aggressive stance in moving forward on a number of projects. At the last PWAAB meeting there was lengthy discussion relative to Sunapee. In addition, Sean O'Kane, Commissioner, Department of Resources and Economic Development, (DRED) confirmed his support of Wild Goose and that DRED does not support an access site at the state beach. Director Perry reported that at this point, Sunapee Harbor does not appear to be an alternative either. Director Perry stated that he feels optimistic in speaking with Carol Murray, Commissioner, Department of Transportation, as she feels there is a way to solve the problem and is happy to meet with Department staff to discuss other potential opportunities. In addition, there have been some issues relative to access to Lake Winnisquam, Ahern State Park, and due to a possible loss of public access the board is planning to meet to discuss additional opportunities in the near future.

Commissioner Morse stated that he is hearing comments relative to constituents being unhappy with boat access in the state. Commissioner Morse stated that without proper access there is potential for the Department to lose additional funding if sportsmen are not able to access lakes.

DIRECTOR'S COMMENTS
Director Perry reported that there have been some proposed changes in reporting responsibilities within the Access and Engineering Division. He reported that the proper paperwork has been submitted to the Division of Personnel and now the Department is required to obtain Governor and Council approval prior to moving forward. He further stated that he is hopeful that at the August meeting he can provide more details, however, at this point the Department has not received final approval and it is still in its conceptual stages. In addition, Director Perry spoke relative to the recent audit findings. He stated that there were 48 findings and that the Department is committed to internally addressing the issues and resolving them. Further, Director Perry reported that the Department's accounting personnel has had to double up on work and try to compensate for a worker who recently left without notice. He thanked Kathy LaBonte, Business Administrator, for she and her staff's willingness to take the necessary steps to catch up and bring things to current status. In closing, Director Perry announced that there would be a dedication ceremony of the Barry Conservation Camp Dining Hall on July 11, 2004, at 11:00 a.m., honoring former Grafton County Commissioner, Frank Clark, for his dedicated efforts and interest in Barry Conservation Camp.

NOMINATING COMMITTEE: J. Jones, Chairman, Commissioners Phillipson, and Russell.
Commissioner Phillipson reported on behalf of Commissioner Jones that the Committee met and submits the following as a recommendation of officers:

Ted Tichy, Coos County Commissioner - Chairman
Walter Morse, Hillsborough County Commissioner - Vice Chairman
Sharon Guaraldi, Grafton County Commissioner - Secretary/Treasurer.

At this time, Commissioner Clarke moved to accept the above nomination of officers and Commissioner Normandeau seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Hatch handed Commissioner Tichy the gavel and exchanged seats for the remainder of the meeting. Commissioner Tichy thanked the Commission for their support. He stated that he looks forward to his new role and hopes he can do a responsible job in the position. He further stated he looks forward to working with everyone, including a great Director and administrative assistance from Tanya.

At this time, 12:41 p.m., Commissioner Nottonson moved to adjourn and Commissioner Hatch seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Respectfully submitted,
Sharon Guaraldi, Secretary

Approved: ________________________ Date: _________________________
Ted Tichy, Chairman


NEW HAMPSHIRE FISH AND GAME COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES
May 26, 2004
FISH AND GAME HEADQUARTERS, 11 HAZEN DRIVE, CONCORD, NH 03301

Commissioners Present: G. Normandeau, W. Morse, S. Guaraldi, R. Phillipson, E. Hatch, D. Clarke, J. Jones, N. Russell, and S. Nottonson.

Commissioners Absent: T. Tichy

Executive Director Perry - present

Commission Chair Hatch called the meeting to order at 9:34 a.m. Commissioner Hatch opened the meeting with the pledge of allegiance and informed the audience that the public is entitled to attend all Commission meetings and when recognized by the Chairman, the public may speak on any item on the agenda except items for which a public hearing under RSA 541:A has been noticed and/or held, and or the period for public comment is open or has been closed.

At this time, Commissioner Hatch recognized Kerri Messina, Director, New Hampshire Wildlife Federation, Bill Carney, Outdoor Writer, John Cowan, NE Bass Association, Roger Bellerose, Carol Rowell, Charlie Thoits, and Patricia Costa, who is interested in the vacant Belknap County Commissioner position.

ACTION ITEMS:
1. Commissioner Normandeau moved to approve the April Commission Minutes as written, and Commissioner Russell seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

(Information Item #4 was heard out of sequence due to time restraints)

Colonel Gray presented Conservation Officer Wayne E. Saunders, with the 2003 Northeast Conservation Law Enforcement Chiefs Association, Officer of the Year Award. Colonel Gray reported that Officer Saunders is a nine-year veteran of the field force and provides coverage for a very large area in District 1.

At this time, Colonel Gray read aloud a letter submitted to the Department from a constituent outlining what great level of professionalism they received from Officer Saunders while they were vacationing in New Hampshire. The couple was fishing in the northern part of the state and found themselves in a very frustrating situation when they returned to their vehicle and could not get the shifting level out of park. They were stranded. Officer Wayne Saunders was patrolling the area and found the couple in distress. After learning of the situation, Officer Saunders notified the dispatcher at the Colebrook Police Station, who in turn attempted to reach the toll free emergency service number. The Colebrook dispatcher stated that due to the complexity of emergency information required, it would be better if one of the individuals could come to the police station to provide that data. At that point, Officer Saunders brought the husband to the police station so he could provide the necessary information. The couple informed Officer Saunders that their Son and Grandson were fishing a short distance away and Officer Saunders offered to look for the son and attempt to notify him of the incident in addition to leaving a message for him at the location the couple was staying. The couple thanked Officer Saunders for all his help and efforts. Officer Saunders simply stated, "I'm just doing my job". The problem seemed to have been that the husband was not applying the break while attempting to put the car in gear. They could not believe it! The closing statement read, "Officer Saunders is an outstanding Officer and a credit to you unit as he went above and beyond the call of duty".

The second officer recognized was Conservation Officer Todd Szewczyk, who was presented with the Shikar Safari International Wildlife Officer of the Year Award. Officer Szewczyk, also a nine-year veteran and covers part of the District 4 region. Colonel Gray read aloud a letter that was submitted to Officer Szewczyk's Lieutenant, John Whitmore, recognizing some of Officer Szewczyk's accomplishments. The letter stated, "Without a doubt, Officer Szewczyk has contributed significantly to improve the quality of fishing and hunting throughout his patrol. It further stated that Officer Szewczyk has done a fine job stocking pheasants, monitoring activity at Lampson Farm, and has done a splendid job interacting with all types of hunters. His involvement in the increase of fish stocked in the Piscatequa River has made many fishermen very happy this year, surely contributing to increased license sales.

On behalf of the entire Commission, Commissioner Hatch extended their congratulations to the above officers for the exemplary service they provide and wished them continued good-luck in their law enforcement careers.

2. Commissioner Jones moved to accept the donation of $95.00, from the Orvis Company, of Manchester, Vermont, to be utilized by the Atlantic Salmon Restoration Program, and Commissioner Normandeau seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Commissioner Hatch requested an update on the Atlantic Salmon Program in the Merrimack River. Steve Perry reported that all indications at this point are that the Region 5, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service are experiencing budget shortages and are not able to fund their portion of this program. Further, Director Perry stated that there is reason for concern, however, reported that after a recent discussion with the Regional Director of the Fish and Wildlife Service, the Department has been told that they have found enough money to essentially keep a skeleton operation going for the remainder of 2004. Further, Director Perry stated that the real issue is what is to come for 2005, which is yet to be determined.

3. Commissioner Jones moved to approve the expenditure of $250.00 from the Wildlife Habitat Account, to print signs restricting access to a portion of the Andorra Forest, LP, and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

4. (Late Action Item) Commissioner Guaraldi moved to approve the donation of snowmobile traction devices, valued at $4,500.00, from Mack Studs, Pelham, New Hampshire, to equip 45 law enforcement snowmobiles, and Commissioner Normandeau seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Commissioner Nottonson inquired as to how much the devices would cost to be installed. Major Acerno responded that the Ski-Doo dealer estimated about 1 1/2 to 2 hours depending on the number of studs and that the Department would be going with the minimal number of recommended studs. He further reported that Jim Solerno, owner of Mack Studs, offered to provide the garage staff with training on how to put the studs on the 45 machines.

5. (Late Action Item) Commissioner Phillipson moved to approve the donation of a 20-gauge shotgun, valued at approximately $1,545.00, from The Sturm Ruger Company, to be utilized by the Small Game Project, and Commissioner Jones seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Julie Robinson, Biologist, reported that this donation would be given to a small game survey respondent via a drawing of returned surveys for the 2004-2005 season. Commissioner Phillipson stated that this donation would greatly increase participation.

INFORMATION ITEMS:
1. Judy Stokes, Chief, Public Affairs Division, presented a viewing of the 2004 Migratory Waterfowl Stamp. She announced that an oil-on-canvas painting of a wood duck by Berlin High School student Lindsey Rothe, age 17, was chosen from among 106 entries as New Hampshire's State Best of Show in the 2004 Federal Junior Duck Stamp Conservation and Design Contest. Rothe won a $500 scholarship, and her artwork will appear on New Hampshire's official 2004 duck stamp. Judy stated that the department is lucky to have so many talented participants. The Commission thanked Judy for the viewing.

2. (Information Item #2 was withdrawn by the Department.)

3. Dan Lynch, Assistant Director provided the monthly financial statement dated April 30, 2004. (See Attached)


STANDING COMMITTEES:

POLICY COMMITTEE: Commissioner Clarke, Chair; Commissioners E. Hatch, R. Phillipson, S. Nottonson and J. Jones. Commissioner Hatch stated that there was no meeting, therefore, no report.

LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE: Commissioner Jones, Chair; Commissioners Ross, Guaraldi and Morse. Commissioner Jones reported on the following legislation:

Commissioner Guaraldi moved to accept the change of effective date of HB-487, lead sinker bill, to 2006, and Commissioner Jones seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

In addition, Commissioner Jones reported that HB-736, relative to duties of the Fish and Game Commission and complaints against Fish and Game Commissioners, was passed by both houses and endorsed by Governor Benson. The Governor encourages all Commissioners to read the bill carefully as it sets boundaries for Commissioners, including certain penalties.

On behalf of the Commission, Commissioner Hatch again thanked Sandy Falicon, Rules/Legislative Coordinator, for all her hard work and dedication.

ISSUES IN THE 21ST CENTURY: Commissioner Phillipson, Chair: Commissioner Clarke, Tichy, and Normandeau. Commissioner Phillipson reported that there was no meeting, therefore, no report.

RIVERS COMMITTEE: Commissioner Jones; Commissioner Jones reported that the next scheduled meeting is for August.

LAKES COMMITTEE: Commissioner Guaraldi; Commissioner Guaraldi reported that there was a very productive joint meeting with the River's Committee discussing access to rivers and waterfront issues. At this time, Commissioner Jones requested that a search for a replacement be underway to replace him serving on the River's Committee, as he will soon be resigning as Merrimack County Commissioner. Commissioner Hatch asked that the Commission think about that issue and if possible an interested party come forward in the near future.

NOMINATING COMMITTEE: Commissioner Hatch appointed a Nominating Committee, consisting of Commissioner Jones, Chairman, Commissioners Phillipson, and Russell to serve on that committee and report back at the June Commission Meeting with your selections for Chairman, Vice Chairman, and Secretary/Treasurer.

At this time, Commissioner Phillipson moved to cancel the July Commission Meeting, and Commissioner Normandeau seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

AWARDS COMMITTEE: Commissioners Jones, Tichy, and Hatch. Department staff: D. Preve, J. Stokes, and M. Garabedian. Commissioner Jones reported that the committee would be meeting in the near future.

OTHER ITEMS FOR COMMISSION CONSIDERATION:
Commissioner Hatch reported that he received a letter from Commissioner Nottonson relative to license revenue information, which all Commissioners received a copy of. Rather than establishing a committee for this, Commissioner Hatch requested that each Commissioner prepare a paragraph pertaining to their thoughts, points of interest, and possible ways to increase license revenue, to be discussed at the next Commission Meeting. Commissioner Nottonson stated that being a relatively new Commissioner, he was unfamiliar with the revenue side of the department and thought this would be a good way to learn where the strong points/weak points are, and who is buying licenses, where, license holder's range of ages, etc.

Commissioner Russell stated that in speaking with some of his constituents, it is apparent there is some concern regarding the limit of white perch and the desire to have a limit of 20 vs.15 as proposed. In addition, Commissioner Nottonson inquired as to the Castle in the Clouds property and if anyone from the Department has contact them.
Steve Weber, Chief, Wildlife Division, stated that his would look into it.

Commissioner Phillipson reported that at his recent liaison meeting a large group of the audience had attended Discover Wild New Hampshire Day and could not say enough about what a great program it was and how educational it was. Further, Commissioner Phillipson stated, "The staff should be commended for a great job".

Commissioner Jones reported that he received a report from Fred Cook, Franklin, NH, stating he caught a 10 lb. Brown Trout, below the Franklin Falls Dam, which was approximately 32 inches long and was very pleased.

DIRECTOR'S COMMENTS
Director Perry thanked the Commission members and audience members who attended Discover Wild New Hampshire Day. Director Perry stated that the event was very well attended and thanked staff for all their efforts in making it a success.

Director Perry announced that all Commissioners should have received a memo relative to the Early Waterfowl Season selection, outlining the process and the timeframe the department has to work with. Director Perry asked that the Commission review the memo and get their thoughts or suggestions to Steve Weber, Chief, Wildlife Division as soon as possible. He further stated that there would be a hearing sometime in July, which is yet to be determined.

In addition, Director Perry reported that he recently had lunch with the new Commissioner of the Department of Resources and Economic Development, Sean O'Kane, at which time he affirmed that his position on the state park and use of that facility at Sunapee is the same as previous Commissioners at DRED. The Sunapee Lake Association has contacted the Department and asked that another site be looked at, which Chuck Miner is currently in the process of making arrangements for. Director Perry stated that in the meantime, the Department is working to adhere to the Commission's deadline of 2005 in obtaining access at Wild Goose.

Further, Director Perry reported that SB 340, release of fish stocking information, has passed and been signed by the Governor. He reported that Governor Benson purchased his license on-line and participated in stocking fish in the Merrimack River. The ability to research where fish have been stocked seems to be very popular and appears to be the second most visited site on the department's web-page. This information will hopefully encourage others to purchase a license and take the opportunity to catch some great fish. In addition, Director Perry stated that the Department is in the middle of a Spring License Promotion, reported that postcards have been sent, and to date have received a 2 1/2% response rate through that mailing, and hopefully will continue to grow. He announced that the Department has been looking at strategies to pick up additional license sales, possibly through resident short-term licenses. He further reported that the Department has entered into a contract with Mark Duda, of Responsive Management, to conduct some basic angler surveys and to do some analysis on what types of license and what price range would be acceptable.

Furthermore, Director Perry reported that the Department recently received a $22,000 grant for hunting promotions, which Judy Stokes, Chief, Public Affairs Division, requested an application through the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

In closing, Director Perry stated that as far as the budget is concerned, we are meeting objectives for the year as far as revenue and have been taking measures to try and save money by not purchasing all the capitol equipment that we had, and also by holding a few positions vacant this year, finishing on target. He further reported that the Department is just starting next year's budget process and have been notified that there could be a sizeable increase relative to health benefits. Director Perry stated that this will be a challenge and that he will keep the Commission updated on the issue.

PUBLIC COMMENTS
Roger Bellerose, audience member, distributed an editorial to all Commissioners written by Kayne Robinson, President, National Rifle Association. The editorial addresses hunter's rights, rules and regulations and how times have changed. It states that hunters are leaving the fields due to red tape and extreme complexity of hunting in today's age.

Dan Hall, Chairperson, Trout Unlimited, spoke relative to the fish rules process and requested that the Department advertise to notify the angling public of the change in process, if any.

Steve Weber, Chief, Wildlife Division, reported that approximately 2,300 turkeys have been taken to date, and expect the total to be between 2,450 by the end of the season. He further reported that the first youth turkey hunt was a success, registering approximately 200-250 birds during that weekend. In addition, Steve announced that the deadline to submit moose applications is May 28, 2004.

At this time, 11:30 a.m., Commissioner Jones moved to go into a Non-Public Session to be briefed by the Executive Director regarding matters specified in RSA 91-A:3, paragraph II-a, and RSA 91-A:5, paragraph IV, relating to internal personnel practices, and Commissioner Normandeau seconded. This is an informational item and no action will be taken by the Commission. A poll was taken of all Commissioners present. Commissioners Clarke, Phillipson, Normandeau, Jones, Hatch, Morse, Nottonson, Russell, and Guaraldi all voted "yes" to enter into a Non-Public Session. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Jones moved to come out of a Non-Public Session at 12:30 p.m., after being briefed by the Executive Director regarding internal personnel practices, no action was taken, and Commissioner Clarke seconded. A poll was taken of all Commissioners. Commissioners Clarke, Phillipson, Normandeau, Jones, Hatch, Morse, Nottonson, Russell, and Guaraldi all voted "yes" to come out of Non-Public Session. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

At this time, 12:40 p.m., Commissioner Jones moved to adjourn and Commissioner Normandeau seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Respectfully submitted,

Ted Tichy, Secretary

Approved:
Ellis R. Hatch, Chairman


NEW HAMPSHIRE FISH AND GAME COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES
April 22, 2004
FISH AND GAME HEADQUARTERS, 11 HAZEN DRIVE, CONCORD, NH 03301

Commissioners Present: G. Normandeau, W. Morse, S. Guaraldi, R. Phillipson, E. Hatch, T. Tichy, D. Clarke, J. Jones, N. Russell, and S. Nottonson.

Commissioners Absent: S. Hodges

Executive Director Perry - present

Commission Chair Hatch called the meeting to order at 9:33 a.m. Commissioner Hatch opened the meeting with the pledge of allegiance and informed the audience that the public is entitled to attend all Commission meetings and when recognized by the Chairman, the public may speak on any item on the agenda except items for which a public hearing under RSA 541:A has been noticed and/or held, and or the period for public comment is open or has been closed. Commissioner Hatch requested that the audience join the Commission for a moment of silence to honor former Belknap County Commissioner, Paul Swenson, who served on the Commission from 1979-1984. Paul passed away on March 27th, 2004, after a long battle with cancer. He was a longtime friend of the department and fellow sportsmen.

At this time, Commissioner Hatch recognized Bill Carney, Outdoor Writer, John Cowan, NE Bass Association, Buck Mercier, Waldo Brusso, Roger Bellerose, Carol Rowell, and Charlie Thoits.

Commissioner Hatch introduced and welcomed newly appointed Rockingham County Commissioner, Stephen Nottonson, of Derry, New Hampshire.

ACTION ITEMS:
1. Commissioner Clarke moved to approve the March Commission Minutes as written, and Commissioner Tichy seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

5. (Item #5 heard out of sequence) Commissioner Normandeau moved to approve the Marine Rules as presented, and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. John Nelson, Chief, Marine Division, stated that a hearing was held on April 6th, 2004, at the Urban Forestry Center, Portsmouth, NH. John reported that the hearing was well attended and comments were taken at that time relative to the marine rules. Commissioner Hatch thanked John for his presentation.

2-a. Commissioner Guaraldi moved to accept donations totaling $9,362.75 from various donors, to be utilized by the Nongame Program, and Commissioner Russell seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

2-b. Commissioner Normandeau moved to accept a donation in the amount of $3,239.98 from the Great Bay Stewards, to be utilized by the Sandy Point Discovery Center, and Commissioner Tichy seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. John Nelson, Chief, Marine Division, defined the Great Bay Stewards as being an organization of citizens, primarily residents surrounding the Great Bay Estuary, who formed themselves to be a "friends group" of the department's Great Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve Program. This group makes a strong effort to try and educate the public on the value of estuary and watershed areas.

LATE ACTION ITEM (Heard out of sequence)

1. Commissioner Clarke moved to accept 2 donations totaling $105.00, to be utilized by the Moose Management Program, and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Jean Hebert, Ayer's Cliff, PQ - $5.00
Charles Ulery, Butler, TN - $100.00

3. Commissioner Clark moved to approve the expenditure of $17,000 from the Fisheries Habitat Fund for temporary personnel services and supplies for calendar year 2004 in order to conduct stream habitat and fisheries surveys, and Commissioner Russell seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Commissioner Tichy requested that an updated list of anticipated stream work be provided to the Commission in the near future.

4. Commissioner Tichy moved to approve the 2004/2005 Deer Season as presented, having no recommended changes from the initial proposal that went to public hearing for days of either sex hunting in each Wildlife Management Unit. In addition, the change was recommended that the Department not require the possession of a hunter education certificate to hunt with a crossbow on Long Island, and Commissioner Clarke seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Steve Weber, Chief, Wildlife Division, stated that safety does not appear to be an issue relative to crossbow hunting on Long Island based on national statistics. Steve reported that there is a new 32-page crossbow-training supplement available by the National Bow Hunter Education Group. He further reported that the department would be incorporating that supplement into the hunter education and bow hunter education programs. Commissioner Jones cautioned Steve to not use the fact that the department has not had an accident at this point and further stated that he'd like to see the supplement put in place sooner rather than later as something could happen that would get the department more involved. Steve further recommended that Unit M permits be made available over the counter, through the Internet, and through the mail on a first come first serve basis. Commissioner Phillipson reported that a small amount of people were in disagreement with the proposals when presented at the public hearings and further stated that the department did a good job in making the public happy.

Commissioner Tichy moved to approve the moose season proposal as presented, reducing the number of either sex permits in Wildlife Management Unit A2 from 85 to 75, and increase the number of antler-less only permits in Wildlife Management Unit A2 from 10 to 20, and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Normandeau moved to approve the bear season proposal as presented, having no changes to the initial proposal, and Commissioner Clark seconded. The vote carried with 8 in favor and 1 opposed, (W. Morse). Steve Weber, Chief, Wildlife Division, reported that there was some interest to lengthen the baiting season in the northern part of the state, however, the high female kill last year indicates that a shorter season is the proper recommendation for that region. Steve stated that the department feels it is better to be conservative now, rather than making drastic changes down the road. Commissioner Tichy stated that he understands the department's position and agrees with the staff's decision. In addition, he stated that he has some concern relative to there being conflicts between hound hunters and bait hunters and hopes that is not the case and everyone acts in a sportsmanlike manner. Further, he feels it is a good idea to end that season prior to the start of muzzleloader season. Commissioner Morse inquired as to why we don't leave the season like it is and use the emergency closure as an option. Steve responded that it is an emergency closure provision and the department does not want to rely on the emergency closures as a management strategy. It is reserved for true emergency situations such as last fall. Commissioner Morse stated that he does not feel totally comfortable with it.

Commissioner Phillipson moved to approve the turkey season proposal as presented, recommending redefining the legal shotgun gauges to include all shotgun gauges between a 20 gauge and a 10 gauge, inclusively, and Commissioner Morse seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Morse moved to approve the small game/fur season proposals as presented, recommending the opening day for pheasant, rabbit, hare, fox, quail, grouse, chukar partridge, and Hungarian partridge be changed back to October 1st, for years 2004 & 2005, and expand the squirrel season to include Wildlife Management Unit C2, and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

INFORMATION ITEMS:
1. Stephanie Lindloff, River Restoration Coordinator, Department of Environmental Services, provided an informative slide presentation relative to dam removal and the river restoration program. She stated that we have approximately 4,866 dams in the state database, both active and inactive. Stephanie described some of the functions of New Hampshire Dams, including recreation, storm water detention, water supply, hydropower, etc. The restoration program assists dam owners, the general public, government agencies, consultants and contractors. Stephanie identified the steps associated with initiating a dam removal project and stated that in many instances, a feasibility study needs to occur prior to moving forward. Much discussion ensued. The Commission thanked Stephanie for coming and providing a very informative presentation.

2. Dan Lynch, Assistant Director provided the monthly financial statement dated March 31, 2004. (See Attached)

3. John Nelson, Chief, Marine Division, provided a brief presentation relative to the Atlantic Sewer Project. John stated that feasibility study for the regional outfall sewer system was generated by legislation last year to set up a commission of a variety of individuals. The study consists of 24 communities, 16 having wastewater facilities in place. The issue to be addressed through the study is what the most cost effective method is for the coastal community
to treat their sewage and septage to ensure they do not violate the state's surface water quality regulations. John reported that Medcaff & Eddie would be conducting an 18-month study on the issue. Much discussion ensued. Commissioner Jones moved to oppose SB-481 as written, establishing a sewer and other water related purposes district for Great Bay due to concerns relative to ocean discharge, and Commissioner Normandeau seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

STANDING COMMITTEES:

POLICY COMMITTEE: Commissioner Ross, Chair; Commissioners E. Hatch, D. Clarke, R. Phillipson, and J. Jones. Commissioner Hatch announced that Commissioner Clarke will replace Doug Ross as Chairman of the Policy Committee and appointed Commissioner Nottonson to serve on that committee as well.

LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE: Commissioner Jones, Chair; Commissioners Ross, Guaraldi and Morse. Commissioner Jones reported on the following legislation:

HB-736, relative to duties of the Fish and Game Commission and complaints against Fish and Game Commissioners, was passed by both houses and endorsed by Governor Benson. The Governor encourages all Commissioners to read the bill carefully as it sets boundaries for Commissioners, including certain penalties.

HB-340, relative to the release of information on fish stocking by the Executive Director of Fish and Game, has the potential for a signing ceremony in the near future with the Governor. The Department is currently working on confirming a date with Governor Benson for the ceremony. The Department could get some publicity from this event and reach interested individuals who may, in turn, purchase fishing licenses.

SB-487, relative to lead sinkers, has a status of OTP (ought to pass), with amendment.

SB-512, establishing a Lake Sunapee Public Access Commission, was killed on the house floor. Director Perry stated that the department intends to move forward, discussing access and road issues and possibly making a compromise. We are looking at ways to try to achieve that.

Commissioner Jones, on behalf of the entire Commission, thanked Sandy Falicon, Legislative/Rules Coordinator, and Bill Carney, Outdoor Writer, for all their efforts and assistance during the year. Commissioner Hatch stated, "Thanks for an outstanding job".

ISSUES IN THE 21ST CENTURY: Commissioner Phillipson, Chair: Commissioner Clarke, Tichy, and Normandeau. Commissioner Phillipson reported that the Committee met on April 1st to discuss two issues. The first issue discussed was the use of electronic calls and the second was the potential for stocking other non-native game birds in New Hampshire. The Committee feels that there is no significant advantage using the electronic call and recommends the law remains as is. In addition, the committee recommends that the department conduct an in-house study looking into other species to be stocked in New Hampshire such as quail, chukar partridge, and Hungarian partridge. Commissioner Phillipson stated that this may alleviate some hunting pressure at pheasant sites. Steve Weber, Chief, Wildlife Division stated that he would get back to the Commission with the staff's thoughts and recommendations.

RIVERS COMMITTEE: Commissioner Jones; Commissioner Jones stated that the next meeting is scheduled for April 23, 2004, and would provide a report at the next meeting.

LAKES COMMITTEE: Commissioner Guaraldi; Commissioner Guaraldi reported that the next meeting is scheduled for April 23, 2004, being a joint meeting with the River's Committee. Commissioner Hatch announced that Commissioner Guaraldi's name was submitted again to represent Grafton County and serve a 5-year term on the Commission.

AWARDS COMMITTEE: Commissioners Jones, Tichy, and Hatch. Department staff: D. Preve, J. Stokes, and M. Garabedian. Commissioner Jones reported that the committee would be meeting in the near future to discuss recognizing two individuals. Commissioner Jones reported that there would be more information to follow.

OTHER ITEMS FOR COMMISSION CONSIDERATION:
Commissioner Hatch announced that Discover Wild New Hampshire Day will take place on Saturday, April 24th, from 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. Discussion took place relative to possibly changing the date of the annual Discover Wild New Hampshire Day event as it conflicts with the opening day of trout season. Commissioner Hatch announced that the May Commission Meeting will take place on May 26th, 2004, the fourth Wednesday of the month. In addition, Commissioner Hatch presented Tanya with a gift certificate for Administrative Professional's Day and thanked her for all her efforts. Commissioner Tichy circulated a very wide broadhead for turkey hunting that is currently not legal in New Hampshire. He stated that it is very lethal and suggested that it be brought before the Issues in the 21st Century Committee for review and further consideration.

DIRECTOR'S COMMENTS
Director Perry stated that the department is currently wrapping up the state audit and that draft findings are being reviewed. He further reported that the federal auditors will be arriving sometime in May and expect to be at the department through the summer months. In addition, Director Perry discussed the salmon restoration program and stated that it is not looking good, as funding has been reduced considerably. Director Perry stated that a fishing promotion in currently underway, possibly restructuring fishing licenses and creating a short-term license possibly reducing fees in certain areas.

PUBLIC COMMENTS
Roger Bellerose inquired as to the use of a crossbow on Long Island and the stipulation of being 10 feet above the ground. He stated that this would be difficult for a handicapped person to get 10 feet above the ground.

At this time, 12:15 p.m., Commissioner Clarke moved to adjourn and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Respectfully submitted,

Ted Tichy, Secretary

Approved: ________________________ Date: _________________________
Ellis R. Hatch, Chairman



NEW HAMPSHIRE FISH AND GAME COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES
March 17, 2004
FISH AND GAME HEADQUARTERS, 11 HAZEN DRIVE, CONCORD, NH 03301

Commissioners Present: G. Normandeau, W. Morse, S. Guaraldi, R. Phillipson, E. Hatch, T. Tichy, D. Clarke, J. Jones, and D. Ross.

Commissioners Absent: S. Hodges, and N. Russell

Executive Director Perry - present

Commission Chair Hatch called the meeting to order at 9:33 a.m. Commissioner Hatch opened the meeting with the pledge of allegiance and informed the audience that the public is entitled to attend all Commission meetings and when recognized by the Chairman, the public may speak on any item on the agenda except items for which a public hearing under RSA 541:A has been noticed and/or held, and or the period for public comment is open or has been closed.

At this time, Commissioner Hatch recognized Keri Messina, Director, NH Wildlife Federation, Bill Carney, Outdoor Writer, John Cowan, NE Bass Association, Carl Hoyt, Buck Mercier, and Charlie Thoits.

ACTION ITEMS:
1. Commissioner Ross moved to approve the February Commission Minutes as written, and Commissioner Russell seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

2. Commissioner Guaraldi moved to approve items 2 a-d, gifts and donations, and Commissioner Ross seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

2-a Approval to accept a donation valued at approximately $3,400.00, from the Great Bay Stewards, to be utilized by the Sandy Point Discovery Center.

2-b Approval to accept a donation of fisheries field sampling related items, valued at approximately $409.75, from the Merrimack River Valley Chapter of Trout Unlimited, to be utilized by the Region 4 fisheries personnel.

2-c Approval to accept a used platform scale, valued at approximately $250.00, from Keach- Nordstrom Associates, Inc., of Bedford, NH, to be utilized by the Wildlife Division at deer registration stations.

2-d Approval to accept a donation of miscellaneous saltwater and freshwater fishing supplies, valued at approximately $520.00, from the Newington Walmart, to be utilized by the Let's Go Fishing Program.

2-e. Commissioner Jones moved to approve the donation of a lake trout mount, valued at approximately $500.00, from Mr. & Mrs. Bob Mosher, in memory of their son Ed Mosher, to be displayed at the Region 2 Fish and Game Office in New Hampton, and Commissioner Ross seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Don Miller, Region 2 Large Lakes Biologist, introduced the family of Ed Mosher and thanked them for the donation of the mount. Further, Don spoke of Mr. Mosher's fishing experiences and his ability to catch fish. Don stated that he was one of the best lake trout fishermen he knew. Don reported that the mount being donated was caught on March 14, 2000, weighed 25 pounds, and was taken from Lake Winnisquam. In closing, Commissioner Hatch stated that it was nice to have the family present and thanked them for their generous donation. He further requested that a photograph of the mount be incorporated into a future Wildlife Journal issue.

3. After much discussion pertaining to the need to conduct a feasibility study relative to the removal of the Woolen Mills Dam, Commissioner Phillipson moved to oppose the request to expend up to $25,000 from the Fisheries Habitat Fund and Commissioner Normandeau seconded. Commissioner Phillipson moved to amend his motion to oppose the expenditure of $25,000 for the feasibility study, however, the Fish and Game Commission supports the removal of the Homestead Woolen Mills Dam and agrees to commit the requested $25,000 to the actual removal of the dam along with additional funds as appropriate, and Commissioner Ross seconded. The vote carried with 7 in favor and 1 opposed (D. Clarke).

4. Commissioner Jones moved to approve the expenditure of up to $14,000 from the Fisheries Habitat Fund for program related equipment and staff training, and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

5. Commissioner Normandeau moved to approve the expenditure of funds to pay indirect costs assessed to the Sale of Fish Food Account, Supersport-Fisheries Account, Supersport-Wildlife Account, and Trapping Education Program, for FY 2002 and FY 2003, and Commissioner Tichy seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

6. Bill Ingham, Ecologist, read aloud the draft version of the Ground Water Withdrawl Resolution. After much discussion, Commissioner Ross moved to approve the Ground Water Withdrawl Resolution, with the inclusion of the word large in the last paragraph after the words opposes any, and with the inclusion of the word may in the last paragraph before the word adversely, and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Bill Ingham, Ecologist, recommended that Stephanie Lindloff, of the Department of Environmental Services, Water Division, be invited to a future Commission meeting to provide a presentation relative to dams. The approved resolution reads as follows:


Ground Water Withdrawal Resolution

WHEREAS, the legislature recognizes that groundwater constitutes an integral part of the hydrologic cycle and the protection of groundwater quality is necessary to preserve the integrity of surface water; and

WHEREAS, groundwater supports surface water levels in wetlands, streams, river, lakes, and ponds that support habitat for numerous and significant species of fish and wildlife; and

WHEREAS, the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department is legally responsible for the protection of the state's fish and wildlife;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED; that the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department opposes any large groundwater withdrawal that may adversely affect surface waters that support fish and wildlife.

7. Commissioner Morse moved to support the Department's decision to rescind the issuance of the Atlantic Salmon Stamp and to continue with the issuance of an Atlantic Salmon Permit as part of the Department's multiform license, and Commissioner Clarke seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

INFORMATION ITEMS:
1. Commissioner Tichy moved to go forward with rulemaking relative to the Atlantic Salmon Brood Stock Fishery and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Phillipson moved to go forward with rulemaking relative to Black Crappie, in addition to proposing a 15 fish limit for white perch, and Commissioner Ross seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Much discussion ensued relative to putting a limit on Black Crappie and the inclusion of white perch.

Commissioner Tichy moved to go forward with rulemaking relative to Conway Lake and Commissioner Clarke seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Phillipson moved to go forward with rulemaking relative to Dublin Lake and Commissioner Ross seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Commissioner Phillipson stated that he has received positive comments relative to the proposal and constituents feel that Dublin Lake has the potential to be a great fishery.

Commissioner Jones moved to not go forward with rulemaking relative to Stonehouse Pond and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Commissioner Tichy questioned the need to have special regulations for certain ponds throughout the state vs. blanket regulations. Steve Perry, Chief, Inland Fisheries Division, responded that the Department's operating philosophy is to not support having special regulations for certain ponds unless there is a biological need for such. Commissioner Hatch stated that he has received numerous comments relative to keeping the 5 fish limit. He further reported that the fishery does not have the potential to grow large fish, with an average depth of 30 feet and very limited food sources.

Commissioner Jones moved to not support going forward with rulemaking relative to Trout Ponds and Commissioner Normandeau seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Guaraldi moved to go forward with rulemaking relative to Delayed Harvest (407.02 9 (j), and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Normandeau moved to go forward with rulemaking relative to Delayed Harvest and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.
Commissioner Hatch stated that he received comments relative to the Isinglass River being on this list. He reported that Taylor's Trading Post, Licensed Agent, feels that this change will be detrimental to license sales.

Commissioner Tichy moved to go forward with rulemaking relative to Wild Trout Streams with the exception of Carroll Stream, and Commissioner Jones seconded. The vote carried with 7 in favor and 1 opposed. (J. Jones) Commissioner Jones stated that he was not in favor of naming these streams Wild Trout Streams as it will add tremendous fishing pressure and has the potential for being over fished. Executive Director Perry stated that we are all concerned about where our fishing license sales are going. He stated that there is certainly a constituency out there who likes to fish these remote areas and if we are going promote fishing opportunities and address some of the needs, as far as letting fishermen know where these populations are, I think it is wise that we have a population and can administer the proper regulations.

Commissioner Clarke moved to go forward with rulemaking relative to the Merrymeeting River and the remainder of proposals as presented, with the exception of the Lake Winnipesaukee proposal, and Commissioner Jones seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

2. Dan Lynch, Assistant Director, provided the monthly financial statement dated February 29, 2004 (Attached).

Director Perry apologized for departing the meeting, however, he reported that he had to catch a plane to attend the North American Conference in Spokane, Washington.

DIRECTOR'S COM MENTS
Director Perry announced that the Wildlife Summit is taking place on March 25, 2004, at the Public Service Building, Manchester, NH. He stated that all Commissioners should have received an invitation and hopes to see you there. He further announced that John Kanter, Nongame & Endangered Species Coordinator, would be giving a brief presentation relating to some background leading up to the event and also where we are going with the Big Game Plan.

3. John Kanter, Nongame & Endangered Species Coordinator, provided a brief presentation relative to the State Comprehensive Wildlife Plan. He reported that State Wildlife Grants are appropriations that have come from Congress to assist states cover additional species of conservation concern. The state is required to compile a Statewide Comprehensive Plan by October 1st, 2005, which will be reviewed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and then forwarded to Congress. John reports that there are eight required elements; distribution of abundance of the species, locations, key habitats, identifications of threats, priorities for those highest species, conservation actions for those species, monitoring plans for the future, and a 10 year review process that requires that we do not duplicate effort. John further reported that Congress has assured the Department that they want us to seek public participation. The Wildlife Summit will bring Conservation Leaders and Business Leaders together to discuss what our priority strategies are for state wildlife conservation. John gave an overview of the basic outline for what the content of the plan will be:

Part 1 - Conservation Overview - Why is New Hampshire's wildlife important to the economy and to the quality of life for New Hampshire residents.

Part 2 - Species and Habitats of Conservation Concern - Stand-alone recovery plans for some threatened and endangered species, i.e., loon.

Part 3 - Wildlife Map - Identifying areas with the most significant habitats on a species basis.

Part 4 - Recovery Plan - Stand-alone piece which is the Big Game Management Plan.

Mark Ellingwood, Wildlife Supervisor, gave an overview on the Big Game Plan and stated that it will expire in December, 2005. The main focus is to determine species specific goals and objectives and to establish a new plan to cover a 10- year period being 2006 - 2015. Mark announced that species included in the plan would be black bear, moose, white-tailed deer; this year wild turkey has been added. Currently, species assessment reports are being compiled to serve as technical sources for the planning process. Mark reported that the process would entail 20-30 key stakeholders, the sporting public, the Farm Bureau, Timberland Owner's Association landowners, all of which will be participating in the process and representing various interests of the state. He further reported that in June, 2004, it is the department's desire to formally establish a public working group consisting of the 20-30 key stakeholders. In addition, it is our intent to invite 2 Commissioners to participate on that working group as well. He announced that from September, 2004 - March, 2005, monthly meetings would take place to compile species specific goals and objectives in draft form. Those meetings will occur once a month, possibly facilitated, to help the group come to a consensus relative to those goals and objectives. In April or May, 2004, the department will take input from the public and Commission input on the draft goals and objectives. In May, 2005, the public working group will review and incorporate input into final goals and objectives, allowing us to complete the task in June of asking final approval of the Director and the Commission. The Commission commended John and Mark on an excellent presentation.


STANDING COMMITTEES:

POLICY COMMITTEE: Commissioner Ross, Chair; Commissioners E. Hatch, D. Clarke, R. Phillipson, and J. Jones. Commissioner Ross stated that the Committee met on March 15th, to discuss land posting, review options/techniques for keeping land open for hunting, current use legislation, and remedies relative to safety concerns pertaining to hunters occupying small parcels of land. It is the Committee's intent to develop policies to address landowner/constituent safety concerns. Much discussion ensued relative to current-use. Commissioner Ross reported that another meeting would be scheduled in the near future.

LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE: Commissioner Jones, Chair; Commissioners Ross, Guaraldi and Morse. Commissioner Jones reported that the Committee met today at 8:30 a.m.

Commissioner Jones moved to support SB 340 as amended, relative to allowing the Executive Director to release information relative to fish stocking, and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Jones moved to oppose SB 512 as written, relative to Sunapee Lake Boating Access, and Commissioner Tichy seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

ISSUES IN THE 21ST CENTURY: Commissioner Phillipson, Chair: Commissioner Clarke, Tichy, and Normandeau. Commissioner Phillipson stated that there will be a meeting scheduled for some time during the week of the hearings to discuss non-native species and use of electronic calls.

RIVERS COMMITTEE: Commissioner Jones; Commissioner Jones stated that there was no meeting, therefore, no report.

LAKES COMMITTEE: Commissioner Guaraldi; Commissioner Guaraldi reported that the meeting was cancelled and rescheduled for next week.

AWARDS COMMITTEE: Commissioners Jones, Tichy, and Hatch. Department staff: D. Preve, J. Stokes, and M. Garabedian. Commissioner Jones reported that the committee would be scheduling a meeting in the near future to finalize awards.

OTHER ITEMS FOR COMMISSION CONSIDERATION:
Dan Lynch, Assistant Director, announced that the Department is currently undertaking some target marketing techniques for fishing enthusiasts. He further stated it was nice to see that the majority of the Commission will be attending the upcoming Wildlife Summit.

PUBLIC COMMENTS
Buck Mercier, Audience Member, stated that he has not seen the Department actively trying to entice the young public with activities or events. Commissioner Hatch responded that Discover Wild New Hampshire Day is scheduled for April 24th, 2004, from 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m., at Fish and Game Headquarters. Commissioner Hatch stated that the day is geared toward youths, with lots of animals on site, opportunities to learn about their habitats as well, hands-on fishing techniques, and a youth archery shooting range, just to mention a few. In addition, the Department has a youth turkey hunt weekend as well as a youth deer hunt weekend.

At this time, 1:11 p.m., Commissioner Phillipson moved to adjourn and Commissioner Normandeau seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Respectfully submitted,

Ted Tichy, Secretary

Approved: ________________________ Date: _________________________
Ellis R. Hatch, Chairman


NEW HAMPSHIRE FISH AND GAME COMMISSION MEETNG
February 18, 2004
FISH AND GAME HEADQUARTERS, 11 HAZEN DRIVE, CONCORD, NH 03301

Commissioners Present: G. Normandeau, W. Morse, S. Guaraldi, R. Phillipson, E. Hatch, T. Tichy, D. Clarke, J. Jones, N. Russell, and D. Ross.

Commissioners Absent: S. Hodges

Executive Director Perry - present

Commission Chair Hatch called the meeting to order at 9:30 a.m. Commissioner Hatch opened the meeting with the pledge of allegiance and informed the audience that the public is entitled to attend all Commission meetings and when recognized by the Chairman, the public may speak on any item on the agenda except items for which a public hearing under RSA 541:A has been noticed and/or held, and or the period for public comment is open or has been closed.

At this time, Commissioner Hatch recognized Keri Messina, Director, NH Wildlife Federation, Bill Carney, Outdoor Writer, Carl Hoyt, Buck Mercier, Don McGinnely, and Charlie Thoits.

ACTION ITEMS:
1. Commissioner Tichy moved to approve the January Commission Minutes as written, and Commissioner Russell seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

2. (a) Commissioner Phillipson moved to take action item #2-a off the table and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

(b) Commissioner Jones moved to take action item #2-b off the table and Commissioner Ross seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Commissioner Jones moved to authorize the Department to assess indirect costs to all dedicated accounts which are administered by the Department and subject to Commission approval and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. At this time, Executive Director Perry read aloud a letter from Jennifer Patterson, Senior Assistant Attorney General, regarding the Department's request for legal advise pertaining to the use of certain dedicated funds. The letter clarified the proper use of funding for each of the dedicated accounts as requested. Much discussion ensued. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

(c) Commissioner Tichy moved to take action item #2-c off the table, and further moved to authorize the Department to pay annual dam registration fees for waterfowl management and fisheries management dams from the Waterfowl Conservation and Fisheries Habitat Account, Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

(d) Commissioner Tichy moved to take action item #2-d off the table, and further moved to authorize the expenditure of up to $51,420.00 from the Waterfowl Account to fund the waterfowl operating budget, and Commissioner Clarke seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

(e) Commissioner Jones moved to take action item #2-e off the table, and further moved to authorize the expenditure up to $25,000.00 from the Turkey Account to fund the operational costs of the turkey program, and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Assistant Director Lynch asked the Chair if the Commission had voted to approve item 2-a. After review, it was determined that the item had been take off the table, however, no action had been taken on the item. Commissioner Phillipson moved to approve item 2-a and Commissioner Clarke seconded. Commissioner Tichy requested clarification of what was being authorized. Director Perry stated that the Department was requesting retroactive approval to expend money from the Waterfowl, Wildlife Habitat and Fisheries Habitat accounts, to produce specific segments of the Wildlife Journal Program during FY 2002 and FY 2003. He further stated that no work was being contemplated or requested for FY 2004 or future years. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

3. Commissioner Normandeau moved to go forward with rulemaking relative to various marine rules as presented, and Commissioner Ross seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. John Nelson, Chief, Marine Division, announced that there will be a Saltwater Hearing held April 6, 2004, at the Urban Forestry Center, Elwyn Road, Portsmouth, NH, commencing at 7:00 p.m.

4. After an informative presentation provided by Charlie Bridges, Habitat and Diversity Programs Coordinator, relative to work funded by the Wildlife Habitat Account, Commissioner Normandeau moved to approve the commitment of up to $70,000, and the expenditure of up to $50,000 annually from the Wildlife Habitat Account to implement the Small Grants and State Lands Programs respectively, and Commissioner Ross seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Much discussion ensued. Charlie explained the process and landowner criteria used in the Small Grants program. The Commission thanked Charlie for an informative presentation.

5. Director Perry provided the Commission with a copy of the Pheasant Fund Profile and Project History for their review. Commissioner Morse moved to approve the expenditure of monies from the Pheasant dedicated account to purchase up to 13,000 pheasants annually, and Commissioner Ross seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Much discussion ensued relative to the pheasant season. Commissioner Morse stated that he'd like to see the pheasants dispersed better, possibly varying between different stocking sites from year to year. Commissioner Russell further stated that it seems pheasant hunters are aware of when and where the birds will be stocked each year. Steve Weber, Chief, Wildlife Division, responded that he would look into the issue.

6. Commissioner Jones moved to approve the 2004-2005 Deer Season proposal as presented, and Commissioner Morse seconded. The vote carried with 7 in favor and 2 opposed, (D. Clarke, N. Russell). Commissioner Ross inquired as to moving back the archery season 1 or 2 weeks, thus providing some aid to young fawns and enhancing their chance of survival. Steve Weber reported that it takes 8-10 weeks before the fawn is completely independent of the doe, meaning by the end of August, the fawns are not dependent on the doe for nutrition. Commissioner Clarke stated that he does not agree with the taking of doe's that early in the season as fawns have not been trained yet to take flight vs. taking cover to hide.

Commissioner Tichy moved to approve hunting units A-D for deer, as presented, and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote carried with 9 in favor and 1 opposed, (D. Ross). Commissioner Ross stated that not allowing any either sex days for firearms hunters in the northern units is not fair as archers are allowed 92 days either sex in those units.

Commissioner Guaraldi moved to approve hunting units E-G for deer, as presented, and Commissioner Tichy seconded. The vote carried with 9 in favor and 1 opposed, (D. Ross).

Commissioner Phillipson moved to approve hunting units H-I2 for deer, as presented, and Commissioner Tichy seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Jones moved to approve hunting units J1-L for deer, as presented, and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Normandeau moved to approve unit M for deer, as presented, and Commissioner Ross seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Tichy moved to approve the additional deer rules relative to the Special Archery Permit, and Commissioner Ross seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

The subject of crossbow use on Long Island was discussed at length. Ken Kreis, who has been very involved in the Long Island hunt since it's inception, spoke of his concerns relative to tree-stand safety and there not being a formal crossbow education program required by hunters to hunt on Long Island. Judy Stokes, Chief, Public Affairs Division, responded that tree-stand safety is taught at Hunter Education Courses as well as Bow-hunter Education Courses. Judy distributed a pamphlet entitled "Crossbow Hunting Safety and Education" to the Commission. Commissioner Phillipson stated that he feels there should be a course requirement for crossbow hunters. Further, Commissioner Ross stated that he agrees with Commissioner Phillipson and requested that staff conduct research of other states relative to crossbow training and their policies.

Commissioner Clarke moved to approve the additional deer rules relative to crossbows on Long Island with amended wording to require training for hunters who intend to hunt with a crossbow and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Tichy moved to approve the additional deer rules relative to raising the deer registration fee to $2.00 and Commissioner Clarke seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

At this time, 12:27 p.m., Commissioner Hatch called for a half hour recess.

Commissioner Hatch reconvened the meeting at 1:12 p.m.

Commissioner Normandeau moved to approve the moose season as presented, and Commissioner Ross seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Guaraldi moved to approve the moose season permit recommendations for the northern units as presented, and Commissioner Morse seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Tichy moved to approve the moose season permit recommendations for the central units as presented, and Commissioner Russell seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Phillipson moved to approve the moose season permit recommendations for the southwest units as presented, and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Ross moved to approve the moose season permit recommendations for the southeast units as presented, and Commissioner Clarke seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Guaraldi moved to approve the additional moose rules as presented and Commissioner Russell seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Much discussion ensued relative to the additional moose rules, particularly the use of electronic calls, cell phones, walkie-talkies, telemetry equipment, pagers, and all communication devices for attracting or taking moose.

Commissioner Phillipson moved to approve the bear season as presented, and Commissioner Jones seconded. The vote carried with 9 in favor and 1 opposed (D. Ross)

Commissioner Clarke moved to approve the additional bear rules as presented, and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Tichy moved to approve the turkey season rules as presented, and Commissioner Clarke seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Phillipson moved to approve the pheasant/small game seasons, including a September 1st opening for the squirrel season, and Commissioner Jones seconded. Commissioner Phillipson stated that the squirrel season is an important opportunity to promote youth hunting. The vote carried with 7 in favor and 2 opposed (T. Tichy, N. Russell). In addition, Commissioner Phillipson requested that the department review the potential for stocking other non-native birds in New Hampshire in addition to pheasant.

Commissioner Morse moved to readopt a closed season on raven and Commissioner Normandeau seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support the fur season as presented, and Commissioner Tichy seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

7. Commissioner Jones moved to oppose SB-512 as amended, in its entirety, and to continue to support the decision made during the Bartlett directorship, that being to continue to pursue the Wild Goose access site and to work with the local officials and the Department of Transportation to develop a plan for a safe entrance onto the main highway that will satisfy the safety needs of the access users. Further, we take this action because the Fish and Game Department, after years of study, has determined that the Wild Goose site is the most viable site available on Lake Sunapee. In addition, we request that the Executive Director complete the final design and construction as soon as possible, with a proposed opening of one year from this date, and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative. Commissioner Clarke stated that the Lake Sunapee access issue has been ongoing for many years and he is finally happy to see a light at the end of the tunnel. Executive Director Perry stated that the department's goal is to provide a safe public access to Lake Sunapee and feels we are moving in the right direction to obtain that.

INFORMATION ITEMS:
1. Kathy LaBonte, Business Administrator, provided the monthly financial statement dated January 31, 2004 (Attached).

2 Executive Director Perry announced the dates for the March, April, May, and June, 2004 Commission meetings as follows:

March 17, 2004, @ 9:30 a.m.
April 22, 2004, @ 9:30 a.m.
May 26, 2004, @ 9:30 a.m.
June 23, 2004, @ 9:30 a.m.

STANDING COMMITTEES:

POLICY COMMITTEE: Commissioner Ross, Chair; Commissioners E. Hatch, D. Clarke, R. Phillipson, and J. Jones. Commissioner Ross stated that there was nothing new to report at this time. Commissioner Hatch referred the topic of current use to the Policy Committee to review options/techniques for keeping land open for hunting.

LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE: Commissioner Jones, Chair; Commissioners Ross, Guaraldi and Morse. Commissioner Jones moved to support HB-487, with the amendment to expand the lead sinker ban to all New Hampshire fresh waters and to prohibit the sale of lead sinkers and jigs in New Hampshire, and Commissioner Normandeau seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

ISSUES IN THE 21ST CENTURY: Commissioner Phillipson, Chair: Commissioner Clarke, Tichy, and Normandeau. Commissioner Phillipson stated that there were no new issues to report.

RIVERS COMMITTEE: Commissioner Jones; Commissioner Jones stated the committee is still defining buffer zone for rivers and streams.

LAKES COMMITTEE: Commissioner Guaraldi; Commissioner Guaraldi reported that the committee is still working to develop guidelines.

AWARDS COMMITTEE: Commissioners Jones, Tichy, and Hatch. Department staff: D. Preve, J. Stokes, and M. Garabedian. Commissioner Jones reported that the committee would be scheduling a meeting in the near future.

OTHER ITEMS FOR COMMISSION CONSIDERATION:
Commissioner Russell inquired as to what the Super-Sportsman's Donation Account funds are being used for and requested that the topic be scheduled for a future meeting.

Commissioner Tichy thanked the people who supported law enforcement and department staff at the recent Easter Seals Ride-In, held in February, in Gorham. Commissioner Tichy reported that he received positive comments regarding the event.

DIRECTOR'S COM MENTS
Executive Director Perry reported that he has a call in to Commissioner Nolin, Department of Environmental Services, for clarification relative to proposed rules and regulations pertaining to the closure of the Wild Ammonoosuc and Ammonoosuc River watersheds to fishing to protect drinking water supplies. Preliminary information indicates that the proposal will not be implemented. In addition, Director Perry spoke relative to the Small Grants Program and informed the Commission that he would be inquiring through the Attorney General's Office for clarification on the legality of department employees participating in the program. He further reported that Bill Ingham, Ecologist, has been asked to draft a proposed resolution pertaining to Ground Water Withdrawls for Commission approval. In closing, Director Perry distributed an updated Wildlife Habitat Account report to the Commission.

Executive Director Perry announced the dates for the upcoming public hearings on various hunting seasons as follows:

DATE OF HEARING LOCATION TIME
March 31, 2004 Keene Middle School, 7 Washington St., Keene 6:30 p.m.
April 1, 2004 Region 1, Fish & Game, 629B MainSt., Lancaster 6:30 p.m.
(Please note that April 6th was announced at the meeting, however, due to a conflict has been changed to April 1st.)
April 7, 2004 Fish & Game HQ, 11 Hazen Dr., Concord 6:30 p.m.
PUBLIC COMMENTS

Ken Kreis, audience member, reiterated his concerns for individuals to have some sort of hunter educational training prior to being allowed to participate in the Long Island Hunt.

John Cowan, audience member, stated that he was against HB 487, lead sinker bill, however supports not using lead. He stated his concerns that Commissioner Hatch testified reflecting his personal interest on this bill. Commissioner Hatch responded that he was sorry if his comments were interpreted that way, however, he testified on behalf of the Commission and reflected their unanimous vote on the bill. In closing, Commissioner Hatch stated that his comments while testifying on HB 487 reflected that he has also taken the necessary steps to get the lead out.

At this time, 3:38 p.m., Commissioner Clarke moved to adjourn and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.


Respectfully submitted,


Ted Tichy, Secretary

Approved: ________________________ Date: _________________________
Ellis R. Hatch, Chairman


____________________________________

NEW HAMPSHIRE FISH AND GAME COMMISSION MEETING
January 21, 2004
FISH AND GAME HEADQUARTERS, 11 HAZEN DRIVE, CONCORD, NH 03301

Commissioners Present: G. Normandeau, W. Morse, S. Guaraldi, R. Phillipson, E. Hatch, T. Tichy, D. Clarke, J. Jones, N. Russell, and S. Hodges.

Commissioners Absent: D. Ross

Executive Director Perry - present

Commission Chair Hatch called the meeting to order at 1:11 p.m. Commissioner Hatch opened the meeting with the pledge of allegiance and informed the audience that the public is entitled to attend all Commission meetings and when recognized by the Chairman, the public may speak on any item on the agenda except items for which a public hearing under RSA 541:A has been noticed and/or held, and or the period for public comment is open or has been closed.

At this time, Commissioner Hatch recognized Keri Messina, Director, NH Wildlife Federation, Former Chairman Mike Blaisdell, former Representative Dennis Abbott, former Commissioner Ritchie White, Charlie Levesque, representing the Audubon Society of New Hampshire, Bill Carney, Outdoor Writer, Carl Hoyt, Buck Mercier, Don McGinely, and Charlie Thoits.

ACTION ITEMS:
1. Commissioner Guaraldi moved to approve the December Commission Minutes as written and Commissioner Tichy seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

2. Audience members participated in the annual drawing for the winners of two firearms donated by Ruger and Thompson Center Arms. Charles Willey was the winner of the Ruger Firearm and Keith Froleiks was the winner of the Thompson Center Black Diamond Riffle.

3. Commissioner Hodges moved to accept the donation of $1,000 from the Lakes
Region Inland Fishing Association, Inc., to be utilized to support fisheries research and
management activities and Commissioner Tichy seconded. The vote was unanimous in
the affirmative.

4. Commissioner Clarke moved to approve the expenditure of $1,820.00 from the Fisheries Habitat Account to enter into a Joint Funding Agreement with the U.S. Geological Survey for the operation of continuous water temperature thermometers at two stream flow gages on the upper Connecticut River and Commissioner Tichy seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

5. Commissioner Normandeau moved to approve the interim rules regarding lobster licenses as presented and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Phillipson moved to amend SB-494, relative to lobster, and Commissioner Jones seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

6. Director Perry provided an update on the Wildlife Habitat Account, Wild Turkey Account, Moose Account, Bear Account, Statewide Public Access Fund, and requested approval of the expenditure of money from the Waterfowl Conservation Account, Wildlife Habitat Account, Fisheries Habitat Account, and Wild Turkey Account, to pay for the production of specific segments of the Wildlife Journal television program; indirect costs charged to dedicated accounts; dam registration fees associated with waterfowl and fisheries management, and waterfowl and turkey project operating expenses. Much discussion ensued.

After much discussion, Commissioner Phillipson moved to table item #6 until the February Commission Meeting, thus all Commissioners will have had ample time to review the account updates and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. In addition, Commissioner Hodges requested that Director Perry have the Attorney General's Office put their findings in writing and provide copies to the Commission.

Former Commissioner Ritchie White commended Director Perry on a very detailed report and stated that the Commission is lucky to have someone so seemingly dedicated to resolving the issue. He felt these reports were much over due and much needed. He further stated that the public expects the assurance that all items will be brought before the Commission that require Commission approval.

Former Representative Dennis Abbott announced that he was the prime sponsor the Wildlife Habitat Bill and spent a great deal of time monitoring it. He stated he felt better after hearing Director Perry's presentation and that he has full confidence in him resolving and addressing the important procedural issues that got the Department to this point.

Former Chairman Mike Blaisdell stated, "We did spend a lot of capitol, however, we need to look at things in a different light and move forward." He further stated that the Commission now has the proper information and is aware of what their responsibilities are and what they will be held accountable for.

Bill Carney, Outdoor Writer, stated that the sportsmen are going to want to know how the funds are being spent. He further stated that the Commission should not lose the support of the sportsmen and need to assure the public that the Commission is committed to making sure funds are spent properly.

Suzanne Fournier, Coordinator, Speaking for Animals in NH, spoke relative to her concerns for the non-game funds being spent properly. Director Perry assured her that the funds were spent accurately.

7. Judy Stokes, Chief, Public Affairs Division, and Jon Charpentier, Educational and Broadcast Media Manager/Producer, gave an informative presentation relative to the Federal Aid Outreach Project, Wildlife Journal Television Production. Jon reported on research studies indicating people spend more time with television than any other medium, and that television is the most influential and authoritative medium as well. John announced that the Wildlife Journal TV Program has approximately 90,000 viewers per week, more than 632,000 households watching. The presentation included communication outcomes from the show, including donations to diverse programs, volunteers, recruit and retain license buyers, ethical outdoor behavior, and involved citizenry were just a few. Wildlife Journal can be viewed on Thursday evenings at 9:00 p.m., on New Hampshire Public Television, channel 11, re-aired on Wednesday evenings at 7:00 p.m., Friday at noontime, Saturday at 3:30 p.m., and Sunday at 3:00 p.m. Commissioner Hatch commended Jon and Judy on a great presentation.

LATE ACTION ITEMS:
1. Commissioner Jones moved to approve the expenditure of up to $11,000 from the Habitat and Waterfowl Accounts in order to purchase a 10-acre parcel on Powwow Pond in Kingston, New Hampshire, from Peter Coon, and Commissioner Tichy seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

INFORMATION ITEMS:
1. Kathy LaBonte, Business Administrator, provided the monthly financial statement dated December 31, 2003 (Attached).

2. Steve Weber, Chief, Wildlife Division, provided an update on the State-wide Comprehensive Wildlife Plan. Steve then introduced Darrell Covell, UNH Cooperative Extension's Wildlife Specialist, who briefly discussed the upcoming Wildlife Summit scheduled for March 25, 2004.

STANDING COMMITTEES:

POLICY COMMITTEE: Commissioner Ross, Chair; Commissioners E. Hatch, and J. Jones. Commissioner Ross was absent, therefore, no report. Commissioner Hatch referred HB 1285, relative to current use, to the Policy Committee for review. In addition, Commissioner Hatch appointed Commissioners Phillipson and Clarke to serve on the Policy Committee as well.

LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE: Commissioner Jones, Chair; Commissioners Ross, Guaraldi and Morse. Commissioner Jones stated that the Committee met to discuss legislation and reported on the Committee's recommendations. The following positions were taken:

Commissioner Hodges moved to oppose HB 1176, relative to government access to private property and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Russell moved to oppose HB 1420, relative to requirements of the fish and game department before a coastal area may be closed to fishing of marine species and Commissioner Guaraldi seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Jones moved to support SB 205 as amended, relative to authorizing the state to accept the title of the dam and dikes at Smith Pond, Enfield, New Hampshire, and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Jones moved to oppose the amendment to SB 340 as written, relative to repealing the regulation of traps by the fish and game department and relative to the liability of trappers for certain injuries to domestic animals, and Commissioner Normandeau seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Clarke moved to support SB 377, relative to damage to land by certain recreational uses, and Commissioner Jones seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Morse moved to support SB 487, relative to lead sinkers, and Commissioner Hodges seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Guaraldi moved to support SB 496, relative to the definition of snow traveling vehicles, and Commissioner Jones seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Normandeau moved to support the amendment to SB 494, relative repealing the prohibition on taking conch and winkles, and Commissioner Jones seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Tichy moved to support SB 517, relative to authorizing a two-year program to use certain OHRV fees for publications and promotions, and Commissioner Phillipson seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Commissioner Morse moved to support the initiative to move forward with Connecticut Lakes Headwaters Camp Lease proposed legislation and Commissioner Clarke seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

ISSUES IN THE 21ST CENTURY: Commissioner Phillipson, Chair: Commissioner Clarke, Tichy, and Normandeau. Commissioner Phillipson stated that there were no new issues to report.

RIVERS COMMITTEE: Commissioner Jones; Commissioner Jones stated there was nothing new to report.

LAKES COMMITTEE: Commissioner Guaraldi; Commissioner Guaraldi reported that developing guidelines was a lengthy topic at the last meeting.

AWARDS COMMITTEE: Commissioners Jones, Tichy, and Hatch. Department staff: D. Preve, J. Stokes, and M. Garabedian. Commissioner Jones reported that the Awards Committee has met twice since its inception and have focused on developing guidelines and establishing criteria on how to select individuals for awards. A draft document specifying criteria for various awards was presented to the Commission.

OTHER ITEMS FOR COMMISSION CONSIDERATION:
Commissioner Hatch reported that at his recent liaison meeting in Durham, much discussion took place relative to the non-resident turkey fee being considerably lower in New Hampshire than in surrounding states. He recommended that the Department conduct some research and possibly look into the potential for raising the non-resident turkey fee. Another topic of discussion was the increased cost of a New Hampshire fishing license. Many single parents can't afford the $35.00 fee and feel there should be some accommodation so they can take a child fishing. In addition, another suggestion was to have a combined limit of 25 fish for white perch, crappie, yellow perch, and sunfish. In closing, Commissioner Hatch proposed that the Department include some detailed information in the hunting digest to inform the public of the Owl Brook Hunter Education Center and its location.

Commissioner Clarke requested that Steve Perry provide a presentation in the future relative to the Department's program to improve the fishery at Lake Sunapee.

Commissioner Russell inquired as to the Commission taking a position on hunter orange and making it mandatory for hunters in New Hampshire.

DIRECTOR'S COM MENTS
Director Perry reported on the Guide's Meeting that took place on January 20th, at Fish and Game Headquarters. He reported that there was a good turn out to discuss bear hunting and various other fish and game issues. In addition, Director Perry thanked Don McGinley for his efforts with Trout Unlimited and assisting the Department on various projects.

PUBLIC COMMENTS
Former Commissioner, Ritchie White, spoke relative to the Commission implementing a policy that will ensure all financial issues go before the Commission in the future to avoid any misunderstandings.

Former Chairman of the Commission, Mike Blaisdell, stated that he does realize what great work the Department does and that it doesn't go un-noticed.

In closing, Commissioner Hatch commended Department Staff for their continued dedicated efforts.

At this time, 5:58 p.m., Commissioner Phillipson moved to adjourn and Commissioner Hodges seconded. The vote was unanimous in the affirmative.

Respectfully submitted,

Ted Tichy, Secretary

Approved: ________________________ Date: _________________________
Ellis R. Hatch, Chairman


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NH Fish and Game Dept.
11 Hazen Drive
Concord, NH 03301

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