Meeting Minutes

Advisory Council Meeting
January 20, 2016 at 9:30 a.m.
Inland Fisheries and Wildlife
284 State Street, 2nd Floor Conference Room
Augusta, Maine


Chandler Woodcock, Commissioner
Timothy Peabody, Deputy Commissioner
Christl Theriault, Assistant to the Commissioner
Bonnie Holding, Director of Information and Education
Jim Connolly, Director, Bureau Resource Management
Judy Camuso, Wildlife Division Director
Mike Brown, Fisheries Division Director
Tim Place, Game Warden Lieutenant
Rick Lathe, Information Management Supervisor
Becky Orff, Secretary/Recorder

Council Members:

Jeff Lewis (Chair)
Don Dudley (Vice-Chair)
Dick Fortier
Sheridan Oldham
Gunnar Gundersen
Matt Thurston
Larry Farrington
Jerry Scribner
Jenny Starbird


Gary Corson, New Sharon
Don Kleiner, MPGA
James Cote, MTA

I. Call to Order

Council Chair Jeff Lewis called the meeting to order.

II. Introductions

Introductions were made.

III. Acceptance of Minutes of Previous Meeting

A motion was made by Mr. Gundersen to approve the minutes of the previous meeting and that was seconded by Mr. Dudley.

Vote: unanimous ? minutes approved.

IV. Rulemaking

A. Step 3

1. Kennebec River striped bass regulations

Mr. Brown stated when Edwards Dam came out of the Kennebec River, it allowed striped bass to go from below head of tide to above head of tide. Marine Resources had a rule that required anglers to release striped bass between May 1 ? June 30 and that was because there was a small spawning population of striped bass there and they wanted to make sure those were protected. When Edwards went out, the fish could go all the way to Lockwood in Waterville. What they would like to see us do is put that same regulation on those inland waters. We already had the same gear restriction (single hook, ALO, no bait) the only thing they were asking us to do was not allow anglers to keep striped bass during the closed period that they had in tidal waters.

Ms. Orff stated no public comments were received during comment period.

Council Member Comments and Questions

Mr. Fortier asked what would happen if the rule was not implemented.

Mr. Brown stated the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission was a compact among states along the east coast and oversaw management of migratory fish species that went up and down the borders of the east coast. They managed 22 species, striped bass was one, and they would probably come back to us and ask that we seriously consider the rule. If we did not, there may be some further discussions about how the state was managing that resource because we belonged to the compact and how that was affecting other state’s management.

A motion was made by Mrs. Oldham to accept the proposal as presented, and that was seconded by Mr. Fortier.

Vote: unanimous ? motion passed.

B. Step 2

There were no items under Step 2.

C. Step 1

1. Leashed Dog Tracking rule

Lt. Place stated the purpose for updating the rule was a law change in 2015 which was supported by the Maine Professional Guides Association. The section of law that listed the “leashed dog tracking license” as a license was supposed to be repealed and was now in a new section of law which appropriately listed it as a “permit” instead. The reference to license had been changed throughout the rule chapter to a permit to be consistent with law. The rule was formatted to meet current Secretary of State formatting standards. The beginning of the rule spoke to the exceptions to having to purchase the permit. Within Title 12, Section 12862 a hunting guide could use one leashed dog to assist a client to track and dispatch a wounded moose, deer or bear. Within Section 11251 dogs could be legally used in an active hunt for bear.

Commissioner Woodcock stated the Maine Professional Guides Association (MPGA) and the Department had worked together on this to try and come up with a reasonable solution. One of the important exceptions was the first one, the guide being able to use one (1) dog to help a client track and dispatch the animal instead of having to go through the permit process.

Mr. Lewis asked what the permit requirements were.

Mrs. Theriault stated if you were to apply for the regular permit which the hunting guide wouldn’t need to, it would come to the Department and you would have to take an exam to get the permit.

Commissioner Woodcock stated there were very few people that did it, but we did have some that wanted the permit so they could be called in a commercial sense to go and find someone’s deer. An exception was created for guides so that they would be able to help clients “on-the-spot.”

Mr. Fortier asked if there were training sessions that had to be documented with the use of the dog, or the dog being certified.

Mrs. Theriault stated she could research that, she did not administer the testing process.

Mr. Farrington asked if there was any criteria of what would constitute a wounded deer to allow them to go and look for it with the dog.

Mrs. Theriault stated we did not define what wounded meant. This was something that had been in place for some time in rules. What we proposed to change was the guiding aspect.

Commissioner Woodcock stated it would be part of the guides responsibility, it wasn’t just an average citizen doing this unless they got the permit or became a guide.

Deputy Commissioner Peabody stated he wrote the original leashed dog tracking license rules back in 2000. It was reacting to the Legislature to write major substantive rule and it was amazing to him it really hadn’t been touched for that many years. It had never really taken off and there weren’t a lot of people that did it and not a lot of concern about it.

Don Kleiner stated the process went along and the Department looked at the rules and didn’t feel comfortable that they could be giving the permits to guides. The enabling statute was not clear enough, that was why the MPGA got the clarification in law that then caused a change in the rule. From the MPGAs perspective, the client had wounded an animal and they wanted that animal dispatched as quickly and humanely as possible. This was an effort to enable people who had a license that the Department could take back if there was a problem. The other piece was that the Department knew who was doing this and where it was happening.

Mr. Farrington stated his only concern was the dog couldn’t differentiate between a wounded deer and a healthy deer, if he got on a deer scent he was going to track it.

Mr. Lewis stated total blood was how they did it from what he had seen. He did not see it as a huge problem that people were going to start hunting deer with dogs.

Mr. Gundersen stated he and his wife had a pet care business and he walked hundreds of dogs and most dogs if they went by where a deer had crossed, they just ignored it.

Mr. Thurston stated an individual had contacted him because he was going to utilize the process to recover his son’s deer. He thought it also provided a component of landowner relations.

Commissioner Woodcock stated we would be monitoring it closely.

Mrs. Theriault stated in the rule they would have to notify a game warden before they tracked a wounded animal. We were insuring there was a relationship between the local game warden and the guide who was tracking a wounded animal.

2. Taxidermy Rules

Lt. Place stated the primary purpose for updating the rule chapter was due to a law change in 2015 which was supported by the taxidermy licensing board. It was proposed as a 3-year permit rather than a 1-year permit and to require an unsuccessful taxidermy license applicant to wait a minimum of 30 days before reapplying. Both of these initiatives were to make these rules consistent with other permits we administer. Any rule language that was redundant with current statute was removed to prevent having 2 locations (laws and rules) for the same law language. Current rules required an applicant to pass an exam by proving they meet a list of competency standards. Language was added to require current license holders to adhere to the same competency standards as applicants when work was performed for customers or to be held incompetent or negligent in the practice of taxidermy. This was never addressed before. Language was also added to require taxidermists to complete work in a timely manner and in a time period agreed upon between the taxidermist and customer.

Council Member Comments and Questions

Commissioner Woodcock stated a great deal of time and effort had gone into the proposed rule changes and was in reaction to an incident where clients weren’t receiving their agreed upon taxidermy mounts. The taxidermy board was supportive of the changes.

Mr. Thurston stated “timely” was determined by the customer and the taxidermist and that was it?

Mrs. Theriault stated part of the standard was completing work in a timely manner based upon a written agreement between the license holder and customer.

Commissioner Woodcock stated the taxidermy group was supportive of the changes; they wanted to have the public perceive there was some type of standard being set.

3. 2016-17 Migratory Bird Seasons

Ms. Camuso stated the proposal had a number of changes. The majority of the changes were strictly updates to the calendar. In the past session the Legislature removed the age limit for youth hunters so as we went through rulemaking we were updating the language for youth days. Another part of the proposal was the change in the federal framework for our sea duck season. Based on some long term trends and decline in our sea birds the USFWS was looking to reduce the harvest by 25%. In order to accomplish that they reduced the number of allowable days from 107 down to 60 and the bag limit down from 7 to 5. One other small change, up until this year there was no daily limit for long-tail duck and now there was a 4 bird limit per day. One other thing of mention with the youth day, in the past where we had articulated the age we had some struggles with youth that had turned 16 and felt they were not eligible to hunt on the youth day even though they had a youth hunting license. We proposed to change that if you bought a youth hunting license and then turned 16 during the year, you were eligible for any species that had a youth hunting day. The only confusing factor was that the USFWS required anybody that was 16 years of age or older have a federal duck stamp. That requirement stayed in place, anybody 16 years of age or older would be required to have the federal duck stamp to participate on youth day. The youth day bag limit was also confusing, youths could have 6 ducks in the aggregate, you couldn’t exceed any of the normal possession limits for species.

Council Member Comments and Questions

Mrs. Oldham asked what the challenge was facing the sea ducks.

Ms. Camuso stated there could be a whole host of issues. Some of the eiders in particular, very low productivity, predation from black back gulls, not enough access to food, etc. There was no simple answer but they had over time declined considerably.

Mr. Lewis stated hunting pressure on sea ducks had increased. Now when he went to places he hunted for years, it was difficult to find a place that an outfitter was not already there. They hunted 6 days a week and the amount of pressure was incredible, not like it used to be.

Mr. Fortier stated if the increase in duck hunting was because the outfitters were bringing the sport to more people?

Mr. Lewis stated there was a very dedicated group and a lot of them that when the numbers were high it was a fun shoot. There were also people that were getting their species of ducks from around the world. They would base a hunt for the year on getting one nice male and female eider to have mounted for their collection. Typically you would get good shooting to go sea duck hunting so it was pretty popular that way.

4. 2016 Spring/Fall Turkey Seasons

Ms. Camuso stated the spring dates were just updates for the calendar year. We put in rule the actual dates for the A, B seasons which would change every year so we were putting in the definition and left the dates empty so we would not have to go through rulemaking every year. That was just for the northern zones. During the last legislative session the Legislature directed us to have an addition turkey season in November that lasted at least a week. We opted to have the season run from October 1 to November 7th so there would always be a full week of opportunity in November. The bag limit would not change, it was still 2 birds in the fall.

Council Member Comments and Questions

Mrs. Starbird asked about when deer hunting started, and that turkey hunters did not have to wear orange, did that create an issue that first week of November?

Ms. Camuso stated that those hunting turkey in November would have to wear blaze orange. The weapons would not change so they could not use their deer rifle to hunt wild turkey.

Mr. Gundersen stated everybody was using ground blinds now, you couldn’t see them all dressed in camo in the ground blinds. In teaching hunter safety they taught about their target and beyond to make sure they knew what was in the background.

Mr. Fortier stated we had moved the date on the turkey hunt up north and it made 4 landowners that he knew very well very happy. It was a great concern with them leaving their land open and the turkey hunt had gone very well.

V. Other Business

1. Wildlife in Captivity/Scientific Collection Permits

Mr. Connolly stated during the last legislative session the Department had a bill in to increase the fees associated with wildlife in captivity. We issued importation permits to bring exotic wildlife into the state, possession permits to possess it and exhibitor permits if you were going to exhibit it. Exhibiting did not include fairs or circuses, they were not regulated by the Department there was an exemption in statute for those. There was a direction also for us to engage in rulemaking. We were currently looking at the rules involving wildlife in captivity and looking at the models for some of the other states to try and make things clearer. Not to open the door so that anything could be brought in, but communicate better to the public about what issues we had, what the qualifications should be for people that had them and make sure our concern about the safety of the people and the animals of Maine were met.

Mr. Connolly stated we were going through that process, we had a group of interested parties that helped frame the legislation and offered advice. Probably in February we would be coming to the Council with rules regarding wildlife in captivity. In terms of the scientific collection permits, we added in statute a clarification that those permits could also be issued for educational purposes. We had a lot of classrooms that were interested in having things like an aquarium. They were not allowed to take wildlife, either fish or animals, from the wild into captivity without going through the Department and getting a permit. We wanted to have a provision that permits could be issued to classroom teachers or build in an exemption so they could have an aquarium or something in the classroom to help educate kids.

Mr. Connolly discussed exotics and the large Burmese python that warden service collected in southern Maine. The woman that was complaining about the list did not realize that what we published was an unrestricted list. The list on the website was a list of the animals that you could have that pet shops could sell freely and people could possess without getting a permit. The news made that sound like it was a restricted list, but it was an unrestricted list and the animal that she had was not on it. The woman that was advocating for her 13 foot Burmese python failed to mention to the public that it had eaten her cat.

Mr. Connolly stated that was a concern that people had these and we wanted to have regulations that were transparent so people would know what they could or couldn’t have and be able to track what was here. It was an issue for warden service. They were called upon to deal with these, most animal shelters did not want to deal with exotic wildlife. We have worked with animal damage control officers to provide information on how to deal with the issues. There was a provision in statute that we could charge people for the euthanization of the animals if they have them and we have to take them. That was not an activity that could be covered with federal funding, it was something that hunting and fishing license holders were paying for.

Council Member Comments and Questions

Mr. Farrington asked if the pet owner had an opportunity to appeal.

Mr. Connolly stated there was always an opportunity in terms of either us denying a permit, there was an appeal process within the Department and then they could go to court, but also in terms of taking possession he thought that was a warden service process and there was a hearing process as well and the ability to go to court. Warden service would contact the Resource Management Division if they were aware that someone had a restricted species and we would work with the pet owner to address it in the least confrontational manner possible. If it was something we would permit, we would assess them the after the fact permit fee and move forward. According to law, they could surrender the animal rather than pay the after the fact permit fee.

Lt. Place stated they were in contact with the District Attorney’s office on a lot of these because they had to figure out if they did seize an animal what were they going to do with it.

Ms. Camuso stated we did have the authority to euthanize the animal.

Mr. Connolly stated our goal in the new process was to have clearer lists of what we would approve and what we wouldn’t. The after the fact permit and euthanization costs were the Departments response to the fact that there were people that didn’t care and they would prefer to bring something here and have it and take the chance they would get caught.

Commissioner Woodcock stated the message we had been trying to send was that people not bring in exotic animals to the state. His concern as Commissioner was that some of them were dangerous and Warden Service or biologists having to deal with them. On a more practical basis because the media had expanded on the exotic animal thing with TV shows, etc. it was a challenge for the Department. The Governor did not like to increase fees, but he was supportive of this particular fee increase. He felt the burden should be born by the person that had the animal.

Mr. Fortier asked if there was a show on the Animal Planet channel about a place in Maine where people were bringing the exotics and they were taking them in.

Mr. Connolly stated there was a show on Animal Planet called Yankee Jungle and it was the story of the DEW zoo out in Mt. Vernon. Mother Jones magazine was doing an investigative report by the people that were opposed to that operation that would like to shut it down. There was a difference of opinion about what people should have and what they should be allowed and there was a difference between states. The issue of companion animals was becoming more of a problem. We were working with the Human Rights Commission to make sure that we did not inadvertently enable someone to create further problems down the road.

2. Fisheries Division Projects update

Mr. Brown stated there was a communication study being conducted that fisheries division and wildlife and information and education were involved in. They had hired Mark Duda from Responsive Management who facilitated communication programs with state agencies. Mr. Duda would reach out to the Departments and determine how they could be most useful to the public. One of the things that he did was set up a focus groups of folks who did outdoor activities and focus groups of those that did not do any of those activities. The feedback we received was very interesting in terms of Department recognition and what the public thought the Departments functions were. Once the communication study was completed Mr. Duda would send us a report and we would develop a marketing plan to see how we could provide the public with the services they would like to see.

Mr. Brown stated they were also involved in a fisheries planning process. They went through this process every 15 years or so to update fisheries management plans. This time was different than in the past where they were species specific, there would still be an element of that, but we were going to make a better effort to explain what we did and how we did it and why we did it. There was a steering committee to help guide them through the process and both Mrs. Oldham and Mr. Dudley from the Advisory Council were on the committee. One of the things they were trying to do to help inform what the fishing public would like to see was also holding focus groups with anglers. There would also be a survey going out. The last comprehensive survey the Department did back in 1994 should be revisited, we would be asking some of the same questions to see how attitudes and perceptions had changed and how we could provide some better fisheries products. The results from the focus groups would go to the steering committee.

Mr. Brown stated law book simplification was probably one of the things they got the most questions about. People often didn’t understand what the regulation was, or couldn’t find the regulation, etc. We held a focus group with Resource Management in Portland and invited 10 people. Not all 10 showed up, but we brought them in to talk about their angling experience. To participate you had to have a fishing license and at least fished a couple of new places that particular year. We wanted folks that had a need to use the fishing law book that year. One of the questions asked of the group was, “when you go to a new place, how do you find out what the rules are?” No one responded that they used the law book. Some stated they practiced catch and release so thought they would be all set, or fly fished, or found out the rules from a friend. Some bodies of water had the rules posted there. There were similar results in all the focus groups. They were not happy with advertising being in the fishing law book, they wanted just the rules in plainer language.

Mrs. Holding stated in the 2017 law book they should see some major changes.

Commissioner Woodcock stated the 2017 and 2018 book would show major changes. It would take a couple of years to go through the entire process of regulation change and structural change. He did not feel we should do both at the same time. This project was a transition project because the electronic part of it we were also addressing. An “app” was being worked on, but the transition was how long would we need 200,000 copies of a physical law book if the electronic world had the “app” in the palm of their hand.

Mr. Brown stated they were doing some interesting biological projects as well. There was an environmental DNA (EDNA) project they were working on with the university. It was cutting edge technology that was more developed out west on work with Asian carp. Essentially it entailed collecting water samples and being able to know what was there for fish resources. We were looking at it to focus on problematic species. We had asked the University to come up with markers for identifying pickerel, muskie, pike, red fin pickerel to do a number of things. We were starting to see these populations move to places we didn’t know or to identify some rare and threatened species. The University had developed those markers for those particular species and so far we had been able to go through the Penobscot watershed, collect water samples and we would hopefully by the end of October be able to tell whether or not there were pike above the barrier at West Enfield. We did not think there were, but we often heard reports of them being caught. One of the drawbacks was there could be some cross contamination. If there were birds that ate a small pike in one of the adjacent watersheds and flew into another, we could pick that up in the fecal material they put in the lake. We were fortunate that we had ice cover and could collect water samples during the winter and would help eliminate that.

Mr. Brown stated we had a sea run brook trout project, we did not know a lot about sea run brook trout. There was a dedicated angler group that fished for sea run brook trout and they knew where the hot spots were. We were seeing a migration up the coast of streams that were know devoid of what we believe were once sea run brook trout populations. Most of them were downeast, east of Belfast. One of the problems we had was the anadramous brook trout populations did not show anadramous tendencies all the time. In order to identify those populations we had to catch and kill those fish and take the otolith out and use a laser and analyze the smoke from that. Based on the elements we would read from that smoke we could tell whether or not they were more indicative of a marine environment or fresh water. We did not want to kill those fish, we were developing a technique where we could use fin clips and do the same kind of analysis.

Mr. Brown stated they were also working on a wild brook trout project which was also a genetic project. The objective was to look at the genetic material of up to 60 ponds and see what we had for brook trout. It was developed as part of the heritage brook trout legislation, as we were going through those waters there were waters we had stocked once or twice with brook trout from the hatchery and we didn’t know what sort of effect that had on those waters. Did that hatchery signal persist, was there some sort of depredation of the wild genetic stock that we had. We also didn’t know if we stocked hatchery fish at a lake above a series of waterbodies whether or not those fish would migrate down and have the ability to spawn and effect native brook trout, and waters adjacent to stocked waters. This information would help us get a better handle on exactly what stocking did and any impacts on native fish resources, and determine exactly what we did have for native fish resources out of these 60 ponds. It would answer some of the questions we had about the private hatcheries that operated back in the early 1900’s and them taking brook trout from one small pond, raising them, and putting them in another small pond. We would know because the material would have similar genetic signatures. It would tell us whether or not the brook trout that we had at our hatchery or any of the brook trout in the national database was in our lakes and how much it was impacting wild fish if at all. We were looking at 60 different ponds, 20 of those were in the Dead River drainage, 20 in the Fish River Chain.

Mrs. Oldham asked what was the ultimate goal of obtaining the data.

Mr. Brown stated it would help protect some of the heritage trout waters. If we had a stocking program that flowed into a heritage trout water somewhere downstream, or some connectivity, we may consider altering what we used for brook trout brood stock there. If we were finding the genetic material was flowing from one place to another, it would alter our management.

Mrs. Oldham stated potentially there could be more native waters identified, not necessarily less or we didn’t know?

Mr. Brown stated we did not know.

Commissioner Woodcock stated determinations also had to be made based on other studies that had taken place outside the state about the baseline for the genetics. Sometimes you did want to have some genetic change or else the population would make itself defunct.

Mr. Brown stated there was also a sucker project, and we had a graduate student that was helping with that. We didn’t know a lot about white suckers in Maine. We did have a pretty extensive commercial fishery for them. They were important to the ecology, brook trout fed on their eggs, but we weren’t sure of the entire role they played in our ecosystem. We also had some questions about the numbers of fish that were harvested and how that was affecting those sucker populations in areas that were heavily fished. We selected 6 ponds and paired them up in terms of size, location, fished or not fished and had done a lot of work on age, growth of the fish. Preliminary results were interesting, but not unexpected. The ponds not fished tended to have bigger fish, those fish tended to be considerably older. Cold Stream Pond in the Enfield area had fish that were over 20” and some of the fish ponds we were lucky if they reached 7” or 8”. The study had another year to go.

Mr. Brown stated the smelt project was just finishing up. There would be a final report from the University of Maine. We were using a grad student to take a look at the possibility of using hatchery reared smelts as a way of restoring smelt runs in lakes and ponds where sport fish relied on smelts for forage. One if the things we felt was important to know was raising smelt in a hatchery to at least the fry stage and then putting them into a lake or pond would be cost effect. We wouldn’t really know how well those fish survived and that was another part of the project. The final report would be available later that week.

3. Moose update

Ms. Camuso stated the Department initiated a second moose survival study. We collared an additional 70 animals in WMD 2, 35 cows and 35 calves. We collared an additional 36 calves in WMD 8. Now we had about 150 moose with GPS satellite receivers on them so we got 2 pings per day with their location. When that was combined with what was going on in NH, arguably a 3rd study area for us, it was by far the largest research project of its kind in the country that was currently happening for large ungulates.

Ms. Camuso stated we had had a pretty good moose hunt but not all the data was in yet. When the remaining tagging books came in we would start our analysis and Lee Kantar would meet with regional staff to come up with recommendations for the season. We did anticipate having very similar framework and number of permits as the 2015 hunting season. Similar to fisheries, wildlife was also in the process of updating big game species plans. They had also contracted with Mark Duda who was in the process of conducting a public survey of 2,900 people across the state on their opinions on moose, bear, turkey and deer. Don Dudley and Don Kleiner were on the steering committee for that and the process was well under way. Similar to fisheries they would also have focus groups and public meetings across the state to try and get more in depth information. We were also going to have a town hall online opportunity for people to participate so that anyone that wanted to engage and provide feedback would have that opportunity. We did not anticipate any changes in the upcoming moose season. Once we had completed the species planning process and had all the information from public surveys and focus groups and regional meetings, it was possible that next year at this time we would be looking at some changes.

Commissioner Woodcock stated we were not just talking about numbers, we were also talking about the districts that were involved and all the examination of the moose hunt in its totality as far as management. Also connected to that was the lottery, it was not what drove the decision making process. It was not the money, it was the resource. We were running the lottery with the assumption that there was not going to be much difference from the recommendations from last year.

Mr. Farrington stated in WMD 8 they did the collared moose study there last year, was there any information available yet about what they found.

Ms. Camuso stated it was a 5-year study, and typically you would want multiple years of data before you could make any assessments. The first year we had a high level of mortality, last year mortality was more normalized.

Mr. Fortier asked if any of the collared moose were harvested during the hunt.

Ms. Camuso stated that she did not believe any of the collared moose were harvested.

Mr. Scribner stated given that this was a multi-state study, how closely were we working with the biologists in NH? A year or two ago one of those states were attributing mortality to moose density numbers. How closely were we going to be working with those folks in terms of coming to conclusions based on what we found?

Ms. Camuso stated we were working with NH, we also worked with VT on a couple of other tests that would allow us to determine if an animal was carrying brain worm. As the biologist, Lee and the moose biologist from the northeast and Canada all got together annually and talked about research projects and harvest. Also annually there was a North American moose conference that our biologist participated in. As the Directors, Ms. Camuso and Mr. Connolly worked with other state directors and moose came up frequently. Whenever they could they would collaborate. The state of VT did make a decision because they felt they were having repressed productivity which indicated to them the moose were overpopulated. In one of their zones they very actively reduced the moose population down to significantly lower levels. It had been 5 or 6 years and they were now starting to see some increase in production. People were concerned that they had brought the moose population down and it had been awhile and they still had not seen tremendous increase in productivity, but it took awhile for the habitat to grow to support additional animals.

Mr. Fortier discussed the spruce budworm epidemic. It was now in Canada and getting close.

Ms. Camuso stated the state had a spruce budworm task force and we had several staff members that participated and made recommendations.

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 meeting was scheduled for February 24th at 9:30 a.m. at IFW, 284 State Street, Augusta.

IX. Adjournment

A motion was made by Mrs. Oldham and that was seconded by Mr. Fortier to adjourn the meeting. The meeting was adjourned at 12:15 p.m.