California Fish and Game Commission Holds Hybrid Meeting
At its June meeting, the California Fish and Game Commission acted on several issues affecting California’s natural resources. Here are some highlights from this week’s meeting held in Los Angeles, Saint Helena and Trinidad, with an option for the public to join via Zoom.
Regarding whether to list the Western Joshua Tree as threatened or endangered under the California Endangered Species Act (CESA), after lengthy deliberations – including two motions that did not pass due 2-2 votes – the Commission continued the agenda item until its October meeting. In the meantime, the Commission has reopened the public record for the specific purpose of continuing tribal consultation. The Commission also requested the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) to present to the October meeting a proposed framework for a West Joshua tree-wide conservation plan and a report on any related legislation. . It is important to note that the Western Joshua Tree will remain protected by the CESA during this period.
The Commission has determined that the listing of the Temblor legless lizard as a threatened or endangered species under the CESA may be warranted. This action begins a year-long status review to be completed by the CDFW, during which the legless lizard Temblor is protected as a candidate species.
The Commission voted unanimously to change the status of Milo Baker’s Lupine from Threatened to Endangered under the CESA.
The Commission has adopted a 90-day extension to the emergency regulations for inland low-flow sport fishing restrictions due to drought conditions.
The Commission honored its most immediate outgoing chair, Peter Silva, for his years of service to the Commission and his decades of public service under California governors, and for the United States Environmental Protection Agency under President Barack Obama on water and natural resources issues, and wished him well in retirement spending time with his children and grandchildren. Commissioner Silva resigned from the Commission on February 18, 2022.
At the meeting in Los Angeles, Commission President Samantha Murray and Vice President Erika Zavaleta were present. Commissioner Jacque Hostler-Carmesin was present from a public place in Trinidad and Commissioner Eric Sklar was present from a public place in Saint Helena. There is a vacancy in the Commission.
The agenda for this meeting and additional information are available on the Commission website. An archived audio file will be available in the coming days. The next meeting of the Plenary Committee is scheduled for August 17-18, 2022. Please consult the Commission website for more details.
Jordan Traverso, CDFW Communications, (916) 212-7352
The California Fish and Game Commission was one of the first wildlife conservation agencies in the United States, even before the US Commission of Fish and Fisheries. There is often confusion about the distinction between the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) and the Commission. In the most basic terms, CDFW implements and enforces regulations set by the Commission, as well as provides biological data and expertise to inform Commission decision-making.