Meeting Minutes

July 7, 2021 @ 9:30 a.m.
Inland Fisheries and Wildlife
Virtual (Microsoft TEAMS) meeting


Judy Camuso, Commissioner
Timothy Peabody, Deputy Commissioner
Mark Latti, Director of Communications
Christl Theriault, Assistant to the Commissioner
Jim Connolly, Director Bureau of Resource Management
Craig McLaughlin, WRAS Supervisor
Bill Swan, Director of Licensing and Registration
Nate Webb, Wildlife Division Director
Francis Brautigam, Fisheries & Hatcheries Division Director
Nathan Bieber, Deer Biologist
Jim Pellerin, Regional Fisheries Biologist (Region A)
Liz Thorndike, Regional Fisheries Biologist (Region D)
Frank Frost, Regional Fisheries Biologist (Region G)
Becky Orff, Secretary/Recorder

Jerry Scribner (Chair)
Kristin Peet (Vice-Chair)
Bob Duchesne
Lindsay Ware
Shelby Rousseau
Al Cowperthwaite
Tony Liguori
Eric Ward
Jennifer Geel
Mike Gawtry

5 citizens and Department staff

I. Call to Order

Council Chair, Jerry Scribner called the meeting to order.

II. Introductions

Introductions were made.

III. Acceptance of Minutes of Previous Meeting
A motion was made by Mr. Ward to approve the minutes of the previous meeting and that was seconded by Mrs. Rousseau.

Vote: unanimous in favor - minutes approved.

IV. Rulemaking

A. Step 3
There were no items under Step 3.

B. Step 2
1. Ch. 16 & 17 Furbearer Rules

Mr. Webb stated there were two proposals, but they covered the same basic subject matter. In Chapter 16 there were two changes being proposed for furbearers, one being the removal of the .25 fur tagging fee when fur was tagged by Department staff. Most of the warden service and wildlife staff were set up to tag fur from trappers and hunters. We found over the years we spent more time managing the money than we generated. We were proposing to eliminate the requirement for trappers to pay the .25 fee when the fur was tagged by Department staff but fur tagging agents would still be able to charge the fee and recoup some of their costs. The second change in Chapter 16 was a language update. In 2020 we removed the requirement to attach temporary transportation tags for marten and fisher and this was a language update that was neglected when that happened. A public hearing was offered on June 7, 2021 and there were no public comments at the hearing and no written comments were received. We were recommending the Council adopt the rule as it was originally proposed.

Mr. Webb stated the Chapter 17 proposal was very similar and included the same change with regard to removing the .25 tagging fee for Department staff. There were additional changes as well. The proposal included the annual update to the beaver season closures. The only change was the removal of one closure and an update to the landowner name in another WMD. There was an update to the special fisher trapping season. Currently, there was a special fisher trapping season that started in mid-November in southern and central Maine and we were proposing to align the fisher trapping season in that part of the state with the general trapping season. This would add two weeks to the fisher trapping season. There was a bag limit of 25 fisher per trapper per year so there would still be that limit on fisher harvest. We had seen a significant decline in fisher harvest since the inclusion of lynx exclusion devices. We were confident extending the season for two additional weeks and aligning it with the general furbearer trapping season would still result in a sustainable fisher harvest. We were also proposing to change the beaver season from dates that were updated annually to general language that would base the season on the start of the general trapping season. This would eliminate the need for annual rulemaking and the season would change based on the calendar. A public hearing was offered on June 7, 2021 and there were no public comments at the hearing and no written comments were received. We were recommending the Council adopt the rule as it was originally proposed.

Commissioner Camuso stated the Council had the option to move the proposals to Step 3 for a vote.

A motion was made by Mr. Duchesne to move the Ch. 16 & 17 proposals to Step 3 and that was seconded by Mrs. Rousseau.

Vote: in favor (10) unanimous motion passed.

A motion was made by Mr. Duchesne to approve the Ch. 16 & 17 proposals as presented and that was seconded by Mr. Liguori.

Vote: in favor (10) unanimous motion passed.

2. Expanded Archery Areas

Mr. Webb stated the proposal was to update language to address incorrect road references, outdated landmark names and bring language in line with what was on the website for wildlife management district boundaries, etc. Primarily, it was an administrative update to improve and modernize the language to reflect current landmarks on the ground. There were also a couple of changes to the areas. One was combining the Bangor and Brewer expanded archery areas into a single area. They were adjacent areas but had always been mapped as two separate areas, so we were proposing to combine them into a single area to make it easier for the public. We were also proposing to add much of the Owl's Head peninsula as an addition to the Camden expanded archery area where firearms hunting for deer was limited by local ordinance to shotgun only. There was also a clarification in the proposal to include islands within WMD 24 and reduce confusion with those islands in WMD 29. A public hearing was held on June 2, 2021. There was one public comment in support. We did not receive any written comments on the proposal. We were not proposing any changes to the original packet and recommended the Council approve the proposal as presented.

There were no further questions or comments. Commissioner Camuso stated this could also be moved to Step 3 for a vote.

A motion was made by Mrs. Rousseau to move the expanded archery proposal to Step 3 and that was seconded by Mr. Duchesne.

Vote: in favor (10) unanimous motion passed.

A motion was made by Mr. Liguori to approve the expanded archery proposal as presented and that was seconded by Mr. Duchesne.

Vote: in favor (10) unanimous motion passed.

3. 2021 Any-deer permit allocations

Mr. Webb stated this was the annual proposal to set any-deer permit allocations. We were proposing a record number of permits, just over 153,000. That included some bonus antlerless permits in two subunits that were established a couple of years ago. In total, the allocation for 2021 was intended to achieve a doe harvest objective of just over 15,000 does. That was approximately 10 permits per anticipated doe harvest. We held a public hearing on June 1, 2021 and did not receive any public comment and did not receive any comments in writing. We were recommending the Council adopt the original proposal as written. We had reached a point with the any-deer system that we felt some modifications were necessary. We were directed by the legislative committee during the session to pull together a stakeholder group to discuss potential changes to the system. We anticipated that next year we may be looking at some potentially significant changes to the any-deer permit system to allow us to better meet our doe harvest goals.

There were no further questions or comments. Mr. Scribner stated they also had the option with this proposal to move it to Step 3 for a vote.

A motion was made by Mr. Liguori to move the any-deer permit proposal to Step 3 and that was seconded by Mrs. Rousseau.

Vote: in favor (10) unanimous motion passed.

A motion was made by Mrs. Rousseau to approve the any-deer permit proposal as presented and that was seconded by Mr. Duchesne.

Vote: in favor (10) unanimous motion passed.

C. Step 1
1. Fishing Regulations/State Heritage Waters 2022

Mr. Brautigam stated the packet had been advertised and was open for public comment. A public hearing was scheduled for July 26, 2021. The comment period would end on August 5, 2021. Presentations would be given by regional staff Jim Pellerin, Liz Thorndike and Frank Frost after he gave an overview of the packet.

Mr. Brautigam stated for a second year the Department had been developing regulations based on theme categories. This year, there were 243 water specific rule proposals, and there were six regulatory themes. The special needs category reflected management initiatives that were of an urgent nature. There were a total of four proposals within the theme, including one regulation that provided protection to over summering brook trout in Abbott Brook which was a tributary to the Magalloway. Every year we reviewed waters that were either added or removed to the state heritage fish waters list. There were currently 583 waters on the list. We were proposing to remove one water from the state heritage list. Removals were not very common, but unfortunately over the years when waters had been added to the list there had been different levels of scrutiny placed on the justification for those additions and in some cases there had been very little data to support the addition of the waters. We found that staff had gone back to some of the waters, in this case Butcher Lake, and had not been able to document the presence of brook trout. The Department did not have any data to indicate brook trout were present in Butcher Lake. It was a very shallow water body, if there were brook trout there they were probably there seasonally as transients from down stream areas. There was no spawning habitat. We were prosing the water be removed from the state heritage waters list.

Mr. Brautigam stated another theme we were advancing in the packet was expanded winter angling opportunity which really only applied to the north zone. We looked at and explored opportunities to provide additional fishing where we had stocked fisheries and existing wild warmwater fisheries. The next theme was simplification of general law and it was pretty straight forward. Where we had waters where special regulations were no longer needed to effectively manage the resource we were removing the regulation from the lawbook and reverting to general law. The changes often resulted due to suspension of ineffective stocking programs, changes in public access, or changes in management. In 2020 the division took on a major project in developing our fishing laws online angling tool (FLOAT) that showcased all of our special fishing regulations and we mapped them out. When you mapped out fishing regulations that had been promulgated since the 1950s we found there were a lot of inconsistencies, and house cleaning items that needed attention. There were nine proposals that were seeking to clean up some issues or conflict in the existing rules.

Mr. Brautigam stated the last regulatory theme focused on the fall fishing season in the north zone and trying to create consistency with the language approach used. The bulk of the packet (87%) constituted proposals that fell into this theme. Our goal was to not only simplify the language and approach used in designating the waters open to fall fishing, but to also identify additional opportunity where fall fishing could be provided without impacts to our native wild fisheries. We reviewed over 400 north zone lake and pond fall fishing regulations. After that was completed, we had four different elements we were proposing that related to fall fishing. One of the things was the special season period referred to as season code "A" which as it existed in the current law book allowed you to open water and ice fish from December to the end of April. We typically used that time period in conjunction with general law season dates to create in effect year-round fishing on those waters. We are actually changing the definition of the special season A code to year-round fishing so it would be very clear that you could fish year round without having to look at special codes that were in place. Another aspect developed in this component of the packet was the elimination of special restrictions we had in the fall such as artificial lures only (ALO) and catch and release (CR) that were more applicable and appropriate for use where we had stocked fisheries. We are proposing to eliminate that special language which really had no conservation value in managing our warmwater fisheries. The third component was development of standardized language for waters that were stocked in the north zone and were open in the fall. The language would almost mirror language that we used in the south zone for waters that were open to fall fishing. The fourth component was development of 26 additional fall fishing opportunities on waters that were either stocked or supported warm water fisheries.

Mr. Brautigam discussed the new threat of rock bass in Cumberland County, and that Mr. Pellerin was involved in an effort to eradicate that introduction.

Staff presentations

Jim Pellerin - Region A - Reclamation and Restoration of Round Pond in Albany

Mr. Pellerin stated the project was part of the Sebago Trout Unlimited initiative with Dr. Dave Haskell, 5 in 5. The goal was to reclaim 5 trout ponds in 5 years. The last of the 5 in 5 projects was Round Pond, its a fairly small pond about 14 acres and 30 feet deep. It was fairly remote and historically, prior to the reclamation, we were stocking with 350 fall fingerling brook trout. It was managed to create a put, grow and take fishery but we rarely saw fish beyond 2 years of age. The pre-treatment data collection was conducted and permitting. We also did outlet flow studies. Crocker Pond had a mile outlet that drained down and was the primary inlet to Round Pond, there were large beaver flowages and several little springs and tributaries and made it very difficult to treat. Beaver dams were removed and the beaver relocated. After the dams were removed there was less water which made it easier to treat. Equipment had to be brought in which was difficult in remote areas. Once everything is in and set up the treatment goes fairly quickly. Wherever we have flowing water we have to set up drip stations so the water stays toxic for a long enough period of time to kill the invasive species.

Mr. Pellerin stated they would then do a field bioassay to see if they reached their target loads and take some of the water and put in live fish to see how long they survived. They also did some testing at the health lab. Typical results were an increased trout abundance, better condition and more holdover. Sometimes we would even see natural reproduction. On Round Pond we did four years post treatment and getting angler reports initially after treatment people were catching 10-15 trout but that changed from the last year or two with people reporting the trout werent very big and getting lots of small trout. We went in to sample and got 54 brook trout and the mean length was 10, the weight was .4 lbs. and the condition factor was .83. Typically, we saw a condition factor of reclaimed trout ponds of above 1 so that was low and meant the fish werent growing well. We also electro fished the tributaries and found an abundance of wild brook trout. We anticipated some, but not the extent we saw. We also saw no other fish species present 4 years post treatment. Our conclusion was the reclamation was successful, we did eliminate the invasive species, wild reproduction/recruitment exceeded our expectations and the issue now is we have too many trout. Recommendations are to eliminate stocking and manage as a wild brook trout fishery, and to revise management goals to reflect that it is now a wild trout fishery and we are proposing some regulation changes and manage it for wild trout. It had a fall fishing season and because these are wild trout were replacing that fall season with CL which basically closes it now. Were also adding an S-20 which is a harvest slot that allows people to harvest 6-12 fish, but anything over 12 has to be released. The idea behind that is to maintain that size quality of the fishery all those bigger fish over 12 will be released and recycled and caught by other anglers. In an effort with Trout Unlimited and White Mountain National Forest he was applying for a use permit to store one or two canoes at the pond for public use on a first come, first served basis similar to what occurred at Baxter State Park.

Commissioner Camuso stated he indicated there were too many trout, and not enough angling pressure. She was curious why he was recommending to close it to fall fishing.

Mr. Pellerin stated we were managing it now as a wild trout fishery.

Commissioner Camuso asked when was the last time it was stocked?

Mr. Pellerin stated it was stocked last year, but that was cancelled this year.

Mr. Brautigam stated it was a situation where there were too many fish and one strategy we could advance was to stop the stocking to reduce the density of fish. We always had the ability to reinstitute the stocking program if we felt there was insufficient recruitment there to maintain the fishery. There wasnt a lot of harvesting going on and that was part of the challenge. With what they were seeing there now, removing the stocking program was one step. We could explore what our regulatory needs might be in the future to fine tune what we had for a wild brook trout population there. In most cases eliminating the stocking program was a good step given the abundance of wild fish that were seeing in that system and given the low fishing pressure. Somehow, weve got to reduce that population to improve the overall health of the fishery thats there.

Liz Thorndike - Region D - Expanding Winter Angling Opportunity in the Rangeley Lakes Region

Ms. Thorndike stated only 2 of the 31 waters in the area that are currently stocked were providing winter angling opportunities. We also saw this when the Commissioner offered the free fishing week from February 13 21st, Franklin County which was almost entirely in the Rangeley Region had the lowest participation rate, but didnt have the lowest population rate and was likely correlated just from the lack of waters open to ice fishing. Rangeley had a long history and culture of open water fishing, and hasnt always supported ice fishing. Weve seen a change in the recent year with angler use and habits and anglers had been calling and emailing regional offices asking why there wasnt more opportunity. A list of possible waters was compiled that would not pose a risk to native populations such as stocked fisheries, consideration for access and aligns with management goals and objectives. Outreach included discussions with warden service, landowner relations, etc. and people overall were supportive of additional opportunity. There were some concerns around the use of live fish as bait and trespassing when accessing bodies of water for ice fishing.

Commissioner Camuso asked how many waters were being proposed to be open for ice fishing?

Ms. Thorndike stated there were 8 proposals. Six would be open for the first time, one was a kids only water they were proposing to open in December, and another similar one to change the season.

Mrs. Rousseau stated she was happy to see the rule changes being proposed were addressing both brook trout protection and also angler opportunity in the wintertime. There was something that concerned her that she did not see in the proposals and that was the Kennebago River and Trout Rock. She had brought this up before in the past. It had gotten worse and she was very concerned with the warming climate and some anglers were taking measures into their own hands blocking trail access with trees and shrubs to try and protect the fishery. It was extremely warm in there. She was confused why we werent including that when we were including Abbott Brook as being a little better protected by changes in rules. We had done a lot to modify rules and regulations on the Rapid River for the same reasons. The Kennebago, the Rapid and the Magalloway were the dream team of rivers in the western mountains of Maine. Trout Rock was probably the biggest question she got as an Advisory Council member.

Ms. Thorndike stated it was a small area below the spawning beds which was closed mid-September to the end of the season. Trout Rock was a unique area of the river, the river was relatively shallow that far up and this was really the deepest spot depending on water levels, 4-5ft. deep so trout would hold there before they went up into the spawning bed. It was becoming very well-known and popular.

Mr. Brautigam stated there were marked differences why we were moving forward with Abbott Brook and not Trout Rock. We had a peer discussion about the benefits associated with extending the area on the Kennebago. We felt, based on available information, there was more of a perceived concern there than a real biological issue. Abbott Brook we were dealing with a situation where the brook trout during the summertime needed to find cold water refugia and that was offered in Abbott Brook and thats why we were proposing to close that to fishing so those fish could utilize the refugia at a time of the year when the fish were very stressed and not have the additional stresses associated with fishing pressure. The Trout Rock conversation had nothing to do with cold water refugia. It was a scenario where trout staged prior to spawning. There was quite an area there that was protected, the river system brought a lot of trout, there was no data to suggest there had been a decline in the health of the fishery with the existing regulations. It was for those reasons we did not advanced any changes on the Kennebago.

Mrs. Rousseau stated it was a very popular question among anglers and bothered her when recreationalists took things into their own hands. Maybe it was an educational component needed for anglers. It was a dangerous summer we were in, flow regimes on the Androscoggin were being modified, they were stopping whitewater releases for rafting. She wanted to confidently be able to forward the information along to the anglers. Winter opportunity was moving in the right direction.

Frank Frost - Region G - Expanding Winter Angling Opportunity in Aroostook County

Mr. Frost stated there were two proposals and both were tributaries to the St. John River. The St. John River had been invaded by invasive muskie and smallmouth bass. They were throughout the main stem and they also had colonized in most of the major tributaries including the Allagash and also the Fish River below Fish River Falls. They were a popular fishery on the St. Francis River. The two proposals were for Little Black and part of the Big Black rivers. The Little Black was the short tributary just below the St. Francis. We were proposing to open the mainstem to ice fishing. Muskellunge existed there, the wild brook trout resource once there was very limited and confined to the smaller tributaries in the upper ranges of the Little Black. Anglers fishing for muskie in the winter would focus on the deadwater reaches where there was up to 25 feet of water in the deep deadwater areas. The proposal on the Big Black was the tributary that came in and entered the St. John mainstem. Big Black was already open for winter angling on a stretch in the Shields Branch which was where the proposal was. The area was colonized by muskellunge and the wild brook trout resource had been depleted to just the headwater, the smallest tributaries which was not habitat for muskies. The proposals would open a couple of new opportunities in the area where they had very little lake and pond resources for anglers.

There were no further questions or comments.

2. Educational Trip Leader Permit Rules

Ms. Theriault stated this would be a new rule chapter 28. On June 11, 2021 the Governor signed what was Public Law Chapter 162 which went into effect by emergency. This law, An Act to Promote Outdoor Recreational Opportunities for Maine Students, created an educational trip leader permit program within IFW. This will allow private, elementary and secondary schools and public and private colleges and universities to, without a guides license, conduct paddling and primitive camping trips for students and adults associated with those institutions. This law was the result of at least two years of discussions and work amongst interested parties and the Department. The law sets the groundwork for the educational trip leader program based upon recommendations of a task force that was convened during the fall of 2020. The law provided specific direction on rules that the Commissioner must promulgate. The law has a provision for the schools currently conducting these trips as part of their programming to continue to do so until October 1, 2022 when they will need to be compliant with the new permitting process. This timeframe provides the Department and the Advisory Council the needed time to complete the rulemaking process and convene an advisory committee. The proposal, if adopted, would become new rule chapter 28 and have a similar structure as the camp trip leader rules. The law would require trips to be led by persons who have obtained educational trip leader permits and the trip leaders will have to be overseen by an administrator that works for the institution. It also establishes the educational trip leader advisory committee whose responsibilities include providing advice to the Commissioner regarding the permits, they will oversee the training qualifications and testing of the trip leaders and administrators and review any related complaints. This will be run similar to the guide advisory committee. The program is intended to be heavily managed by the schools themselves and the advisory committee rather than the Department. The rule proposal establishes the following: there will be an educational trip leader advisory committee of appointed members and includes their responsibilities, there will be an educational trip leader administrator and their responsibilities, there will be instructors who become certified to teach so that people can become a trip leader, eligibility and application process to become an instructor as well as an educational trip leader. There will also be a section that deals with standards for revocations, suspensions, and denials.

Ms. Theriault stated she would like to give some background as to how the discussion came about. For many years educational institutions had been conducting trips into the Maine outdoors providing students a variety of outdoor education and peer leadership experiences. In many situations the trips included paddling opportunities and camping at primitive camping sites. If they were conducted in conjunction with remuneration or receiving compensation, they required a Maine guide license or a Maine guide to be present. While the trips were sometimes led by registered Maine guides who were either regular employees of the school or hired specifically for the excursion, especially at Maines colleges and universities, they were often led by fellow students who had undergone extensive training including wilderness safety. It was a long held assumption of most of the educational institutions that because student participants were typically not paying directly for these excursion, nor were their trip leaders being directly compensated that they were not required by state law to hire a guide for any of the paddling or overnight primitive camping. There were some pretty lengthy discussions with the universities and colleges and it was kind of a gray area and needed to be addressed.

Ms. Theriault stated in 2019, representatives from the UME system and the Maine Independent Colleges Association approached the Departments guide advisory board raising concerns and questions attempting to find clarity on whether they were violating guide licensing laws by taking students out on these trips. The Department agreed that clarifying in law and rule made sense. During the 2020 legislative session LD 1932 came forward and required IFW to establish a task force of stakeholders to convene and report back with a recommendation to resolve the question. The bill was passed unanimously by the IFW committee, but due to the pandemic eventually died when the Legislature adjourned early. Agreeing we needed to remedy the situation IFW agreed to convene the stakeholders and developed a program that would permit educational institutions to have certified educational trip leaders that would lead the outdoor experiences. There were concerns from Maine guides that the program may infringe upon their business and clientele so there was a strong presence of Maine guides who were on the task force. The task force was involved in the development and review of the proposed rule.

Council Member Comments and Questions

Mr. Gawtry stated for an educational institution that was doing orientation through an outdoor trip, would they need to make sure they hired someone with Maine guide certification for those types of trips?

Ms. Theriault stated they would appoint an administrator who was a registered Maine guide and that administrator would oversee the program within their school or university. They would train student trip leaders and perhaps an instructor who could train the student trip leaders. There would be a component that a registered Maine guide would be administering the program, but also be a trip leader. The trip leaders that worked beneath the administrator didnt have to be registered Maine guide.

Mr. Gawtry stated based on the number of institutions or non-profit educational groups using those types of trips in their curriculum, was there confidence there were enough folks to fill those roles?

Ms. Theriault stated there was based on the college and university standpoint. There may have been less participation with the K-12 schools. Private schools were smaller, so there may be some reliance on some of the colleges and universities. They were well networked and communicated a lot so she thought in terms of being able to hire an instructor to train new student trip leaders, the rule would allow for that. Nonresidents or schools from out of state would have to have the permit in order to lead trips.

There were no further questions or comments.

V. Other Business

1. Overview of horsepower restrictions and concerns

Commissioner Camuso stated she would like to update the Council on a few bills that were carried over during the legislative session regarding boating. LD 1663 was a bill that was introduced late in the session and was a mandatory boater education requirement. In general, there was substantial support for the proposal. We were one of two states that did not have a mandatory boater education requirement. The challenges were, there was some need for exceptions for apprentices such as with lobster boats, etc. The bill also proposed a born after date so as long as you were born after a certain date then you would not need to take the course. This would target younger folks. Most of the feedback was that actually it was not the young folks causing most of the mayhem, it was the middle aged. There was a strong desire to move it to everybody with a phased in approach. We would work through it and come up with recommendations for the committee next session to implement a mandatory boater education law. The second bill, the committee directed the Department to look at personal watercraft restrictions. There was a bill or two that proposed to eliminate personal watercraft on particular waterbodies. The Legislature directed the Department to come up with a process that could be implemented to be fair and equitable for those requests. That related directly to some of the horsepower restriction petitions that had been received. A group would be assembled to try and come up with a process by which we were able to review horsepower restrictions. The Legislature was indicating they wanted to kick the authority to regulate personal watercraft back to IFW. Some of the challenges, for example, the Notched Pond horsepower restriction was passed and subsequently some of the seasonal residents had come forward and said no one had contacted them, they had no idea the rule was in place and now there was a group organizing a petition to rescind the rule because they all had boats over that horsepower limit. We would have to come up with a system where the petitioner would need to contact landowners or something to that effect. Laws and regulations did not necessarily curb bad behavior, we would need to work through that, but we may see an appeal on the Notched Pond horsepower restrictions.

Commissioner Camuso stated the last bill that came forward directing the Department to adopt rules was an issue around Watchic Lake. The Department currently had the ability to issue permits for regattas, races, and boat or water ski exhibitions on lakes and ponds. Similar to animal damage control licenses and wildlife rehabilitation licenses, the Department had the authority to issue those permits. It was less clear when we didnt issue them or revoked them. The Legislature directed us to go through rulemaking to make sure it was clear that we had the ability to revoke those privileges as well. There were not as many regattas or water ski exhibitions as there were jetskis and horsepower issues. Boating issues had been a very prevalent theme with the Legislature. Hopefully with the mandatory boater education we would have not just the ability to provide education but have contact information so we could provide continuing outreach and education, and kind of boater ethics.

Council Member Comments and Questions

Mr. Ward stated when you received a guide license, youre given a motorboat operator license. How would that effect guides?

Commissioner Camuso stated you would probably already have your boating certificate so guides would be covered. There were courses offered such as through the U.S. Coast Guard, so they might have already taken a course and would not be required to take it again if they had that certification. That would come to the Legislature during the next session with recommendations on ways to proceed.

Deputy Commissioner Peabody stated when the Great Ponds Task Force sat back in the mid to late 1990s (they disbanded in the early 2000s) there was a final report of that group. He thought it would be very helpful in reading that report and applying it to what they were currently facing. One of the recommendations that was not implemented 20 years ago was mandatory education.

VI. Councilor Reports

Councilors gave reports.

VII. Public Comments & Questions

There were no public comments or questions.

VIII. Agenda Items & Schedule Date for Next Meeting

The next Advisory Council meeting was scheduled for Tuesday, August 17, 2021. The Council would be notified at a later time if the meeting would be virtual or in person.

IX. Adjournment

A motion was made by Mr. Liguori and that was seconded by Mrs. Rousseau to adjourn the meeting. The meeting was adjourned at 12:00 p.m.