Game-Changing Pennsylvania Legislation

Game-Changing Pennsylvania Legislation

Trouble has been brewing along Pennsylvania's Lake Erie shoreline as more and more landowners are closing their properties to public fishing, but at the same time allowing paid, private access to affluent customers who want to enjoy the bounty of Lake Erie's "Steelhead Alley" in solitude.

The problem is that this "bounty" is 99% stocked steelhead, paid for by the state and ostensibly by the angling public. What the landowners have createdin alliance with outfitters who lease the wateris a series of private fishing preserves stocked by the state of Pennsylvania.

The solution to this problem may be Pennsylvania Legislation House Bill 2357 recently introduced by Representative Dan Moul which states that "Any water in this Commonwealth stocked with fish furnished by the commission, including water areas where stocked fish may migrate into, shall be open to the public for the purpose of free, lawful fishing."

The intention of the law is to give the angling public access to the entire length of Twentymile Creek, Elk Creek, Walnut Creek, and many other Lake Erie tributaries along Pennsylvania's short Lake Erie coast. The bill was co-sponsored by reps Gregory Lucas, Thomas Caltagirone, William Kortz, Garth Everett, Thomas Murt, Gordon Denlinger, and Mark Cohen; a mix of republicans and democrats from both urban and rural areas. The bill was referred to the Game & Fisheries Committee which will reconvene in September 2014.


While the proposed bill is a good sign that state lawmakers are standing by the angling public, the reality is that a law giving public access to private property won't stand up in court.


A more successful tactic may be for the PA Fish & Boat Commission to declare all private property as "nursery waters" in the fishing regulations, and close it to all fishing. They can do that. If the public can't fish there, no one fishes there. Then use the Erie Access Improvement Grant Program to purchase longterm fishing easements on these properties, and re-open them to all fishermen.


Recommended for You

United States

Saving the Chattahoochee River

Ross Purnell - April 23, 2019

How an Atlanta craft brewery is helping to save Georgia's most important trout stream.

News

2019 Most Endangered Rivers

Fly Fisherman - April 16, 2019

American Rivers today released its annual list of America's Most Endangered Rivers,...

Fly Tying

Tying the Kamikaze Sculpin

Charlie Craven

The Kamikaze Sculpin is easy to tie, versatile, and smartly designed to get the job done.

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Casting Backhand in Tight Quarters

A backhand cast is when you use your backcast to deliver the fly.

Adding Bass Popper Legs

Bass maniac Ben Romans showcases his balsa wood poppers and demonstrates how to add rubber legs to hard, durable, bass bugs.

Black Beauty

Master fly tier Charlie Craven discuss the tools and materials needed to tie the Black Beauty.

See more Popular Videos

Trending Stories

United States

Wind River Range Wyoming

Greg Thomas - July 27, 2015

Golden riches in Wyoming's high-country heaven of the Wind River Range.

Gear

Top Drift Boats of 2019

John Fedorka - April 02, 2019

Drift boats help you search through miles of river quickly and effectively. Here's the top...

United States

Indian Peaks Wilderness Area Colorado

Steven B. Schweitzer - May 03, 2016

Read about Colorado's backcountry fly fishing in " Indian Peaks Wilderness Area Colorado."

See More Stories

More Editor's Notebook

Editor's Notebook

Utahns Win Five-Year Battle for Stream Access

Ross Purnell, Editor - November 05, 2015

Utah fly fishers win five-year battle for stream access to the Provo, Weber, and many other...

Editor's Notebook

Tying the Parachute Damsel Adult

Ross Purnell, Editor - March 27, 2017

Tying the Parachute Damsel Adult is an easy, accurate, and durable imitation.

Editor's Notebook

Fly Fishing Guide Settles Wrongful Death Suit

Ross Purnell - December 28, 2018

According to Sam Wilson of the Billings Gazette, a Montana fly-fishing guide was settled a...

See More Editor's Notebook

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Temporary Price Reduction.

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

×