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PostPosted: Fri May 23, 2008 5:07 pm    Post subject: Important News! FARMINGTON GAME COMMISSION MTG & AGENDA Reply with quote

Thanks to Vinny and Andreas for this important information on the river!!!


There will be an open-public meeting (see below) with the NMG&F Commission. The meeting is not all about the San Juan but it will respresent a good opportunity to discuss San Juan issues and possible remedies. The meeting is scheduled to occur on May 29th from 9am-5pm in Room 7103 at San Juan College. Park in the main, front parking lot and look for the "Copper Top" building. Room 7103 is in that building.

As you can see from the agenda, some of the San Juan River issues we are interested in are not currently on the agenda. The meeting is NOT all about the San Juan River. We had hoped to get other items on the agenda, but there was not enough time for this meeting to be included. There will be future meetings to be sure. We CAN represent our concerns during the public comment section following the discourse on the "how many flies" subject, which deals with the San Juan.

We are all highly encouraged to attend although the time to speak will likely be during the public comments sections, which occur intermittently throughout the meeting. I would think once your comments have been made, it would be fine to leave unless you have interest in the rest of the agenda. Notice you must keep your comments to 3 minutes or less.

If you are unable to attend, please consider writing a letter to the Commissioners. Here is one letter that has been written on the issues. Please use this as a guide but make sure you cover the issues in your own words:

FROM: Concerned Citizen For The San Juan River


As a Concerned Citizen For The San Juan River, I submit the following observations to you in an effort to depict the plight of the San Juan River Quality Waters trout fishery below Navajo Dam.

In preface, I have been involved in the process to limit the number of hooks per rod allowed and see this as very favorable to the resource. Ideally, and in my opinion, the use of just one barb-less fly should be considered if we are to make a real difference in this regard. The matter of enforcement of such a rule, as well as all the existing rules, is of paramount concern to me and I would suggest that a special contingent of officers/wardens will be necessary to achieve actual compliance. Otherwise, it would rationally be deemed pointless to enact further regulations that cannot be effectively enforced and an investment in futility at taxpayer’s expense.

That being as it may, there are far greater concerns that should be addressed if the health of the fishery is of true concern and deemed worthy of consideration. The following points are made and abbreviated for the purpose of this commentary. A great deal of effort has been made by Concerned Citizens to focus on these issues, the real problems, rather than to employ “band-aid approaches” which we believe will over the long term be minimally effective and prominently costly to the taxpayer yielding sparse results at best. I would strongly encourage the Commission to investigate the following points that were recently explored by Oscar Simpson and a group of the Concerned Citizens:

1.) Low flows, insufficient to maintain the health of many insects necessary for the trout to thrive as well as for sediment to be washed downstream and out of the quality waters have severely negatively impacted the trout fishery. Numerous efforts on our behalf over the past nearly 3 years have resulted in no appreciable action on behalf of any of the agencies that we addressed, namely the NM Game and Fish, NM State Parks, BOR, BLM, and the Governor’s Office. We would like the Commission to investigate this issue with the appropriate agency(s).

2.) Sediment (or silt) loading as three primary washes dump massive amounts into the river upon the occurrence of “major storm events” each year. Namely, Rex Smith Wash, Munoz Canyon, and Simon Canyon. Two of these were artificially re-directed INTO THE RIVER (Rex Smith and Simon)! They originally deposited sediment into an alluvial plain that prevented contamination of the river. An example of the “band-aid” approach I have mentioned is the dredging of one area of the river having been severely affected by NM State Parks. Nothing, however, was done to prevent the problem from re-occurring, hence the dredging will need to be repeated following the next major storm event(s) as it is only a temporary solution. The re-direction of Rex Smith Wash, Simon Canyon, and Munoz Canyon was not seriously considered as it was deemed too costly and wrought with other logistical challenges. Hence, the matter has essentially been dropped. We would like the Commission to explore the possibilities with the appropriate agency(s).

3.) We believe, following aerial tours of the mesas above the river to observe the development of the BLM lands by oil and gas industry, that the natural terrain has been dramatically disturbed without regard for the environment and that this has caused increased erosion contributing to the woes of the river. We also believe that there have not been efforts to rehabilitate the natural flora on the mesas above the river to restore the environment, hence ignoring the rules by which we thought the development of those lands was to occur. We would like the Commission to investigate these problems and address them with the appropriate agency(s).

The result has been tragic as the quality waters fishery has suffered dramatically. We ask that the Commission consider this issue as a priority and work together with the aforementioned agencies to provide solutions that will ensure this valuable resource, the “world class fishery” as it once was, be restored to its former healthy condition. It is our belief that there is a win-win scenario not presently considered and that all should be working towards this, lest we lose one of the most prominent attributes New Mexico has to offer and that our citizens can truly be proud of.

We have been met with stubborn resistance, told that the issues are complex and therefore unsolvable rather than presented with constructive, solution oriented perspectives. We have also been altogether ignored in our efforts. We have been told that an Endangered Species Study calls for specific flows to protect the environment downstream. We have found no concrete, scientific evidence after exhaustive review of this study that would indicate higher flows from Navajo Dam would negatively impact the species under study. In fact, each document suggests that the “present and future water projects of the BOR” are really the primary consideration for the studies, not the endangered species.

We are now asking the BOR to make the trout fishery such a “project” and not only in the interest of the sportspersons, but also in the interest of the roughly $40 million a year industry it represents to the state of New Mexico!!! We continue to be met with the “target base flows for the endangered species” justifications for maintaining very low summer flows, although it has already been established that these are only recommendations and not mandates. Further, the concept of a “natural hydrograph” is also presented as reason to maintain the flows as they are while there is absolutely nothing natural about the hydrograph as it has been construed! Further, historical data shows the BOR cuts flows back to bare minimums in drought years essentially ignoring the recommendations of the ESS, presenting clear evidence of flexibility in releases in support of a “hoard and dump” approach that spells disaster for the fishery.

We see no reason why the flows cannot be maintained at a minimum of 1,000cfs during the months of July through the following May or June, when annual peak flows are arranged and that we recognize have great value in terms of flushing the river clean. We believe this to be a reasonable, if not ideal proposal from the perspective of the trout fishery. We intend for flows out of the dam under no circumstances be reduced to the 250cfs (and even below that level) that most of us consider to have been the beginning of the end of the well-being of the trout fishery.

Thank you for your consideration, and while I will not be present at the May 28-29th meeting in Farmington, I am asking that my statement be presented in absentia during the public comment period. I look forward to hearing from you and working together to correct the problems I have mentioned. I will be happy to forward to you the entire volume of documentation gathered over the past few years, depicting our efforts and the responses from agencies and individuals to whom they were directed.


Simply copy and paste them into your browser and send you letters. The email addresses to all those on the Commission are:

1) Tom Arvas,Chairman, hm 505-821-0502, cell 505-690-0487, EM: tomarvas@hotmail.com

2) Dutch Salmon, Vice Chair, wk/hm 575-388-3763, cell 575-538-1695.

EM: dutch@high-lonesomebooks.com,

3) Sandy Buffett, on the oil & gas committee, wk 505-992-8683,

cell 505-270-5743 EM: sandy@cvnm.org,

4) Alfredo Montoya, on the oil & gas committee,wk 575-747-2122, hm 575-852-2551,

cell 575-929-2014 EM: alfredo@nnmc.edu

5) Jim McClintic, wolf committee, wk 505-271-4550,hm 505-821-5683,

EM: jmsconst@comcast.net,

6) Oscar Simpson, chair of the oil & gas committee, wk 505-345-0117, cell 505-917-2134,

EM: oscarsimpson3@yahoo.com,

7) Leo Sims, wk - 575-393-3024, cell 575-631-8860, hm 575-397-3906,

EM: lsims@pvtn.net

Thanks, and let's tell this important group of folks how we feel. The more letters, the more seriously our position will be taken and hopefully the river will see the benefit! Now's the time to stand up and be counted, folks, and I sincerely appreciate your help, both those near and far! Let the letters fly!!!!!





San Juan College
4601 College Blvd. – Room 7103
Farmington, NM 87402

May 29, 2008
9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

*Notations under each agenda item are for discussion only and Commission action will not be limited to notations.

Public testimony and comment: All those interested in providing oral comment are encouraged to prepare a “Speaker’s Card” for
each item on which they will comment. These cards assist the Commission Chair to manage more effective public communication.

Comments will be allowed on each item, regardless of card completion.

Those who desire to address the Commission and who claim to represent an organization must provide the following information:

The number of members in the organization, frequency of the organization’s meeting and either a signed statement from that organization’s president that states the organization has discussed the topic and approved the position that the representative is presenting, or proof that they are a registered lobbyist for the organization.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 1: Meeting Called to Order.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 2: Roll Call.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 3: Introduction of Guests.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 4: Approval of Minutes (April 11, 2008 – Santa Rosa, NM).

AGENDA ITEM NO. 5: Approval of Agenda.


AGENDA ITEM NO. 6: Revocations.

Presented by Dan Brooks – The Department will present a list of individuals that the Commission will consider for revocation that
meet established revocation criteria.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 7: Hunting and Fishing License Revocation (19.31.2, NMAC).

Presented by Dan Brooks – The Department will summarize public comment received since this rule was opened in November

2007. The Department will recommend amending this rule to assist management and conservation efforts to ensure compliance.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 8: Guide and Outfitter Registration (19.30.8, NMAC).

Presented by Dan Brooks – The Department will summarize public comments received, make recommendations for amending guide and outfitter registration to include but not limited to administrative fees for liability insurance compliance, and request Commission adoption of a rule amendment.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 9: Proposed Change to 19.31.10, NMAC, to Limit the Number of Hooks that Can be Used on a Portion of the San Juan River System.

Presented by Mike Sloane and Marc Wethington – The Department will propose limiting the number of hooks that can be used on a single line while fishing the San Juan River between Navajo Dam and the Hammond Diversion. The proposal is based on the high level of use this stream segment receives and the concurrent need to protect the resource as well as significant public interest.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 10: Proposed Establishment of a Black-footed Ferret Population on Vermejo Park Ranch, Colfax County.

Presented by Mike Phillips, Executive Director, Turner Endangered Species Fund – Turner Endangered Species Fund (TESF) has operated a breeding facility for the federally endangered Black-footed Ferret at the Vermejo Park Ranch near Maxwell, Colfax County, since 1998. Since 2005, TESF has done “pre-conditioning” of ferrets in enclosed prairie dog towns on the ranch to prepare the animals for release at reintroduction sites outside of New Mexico. The species formerly occurred across much of New Mexico but has been extirpated in the state. TESF proposes to modify its ferret project to allow animals to remain free-ranging for indeterminate periods of time to further assess the potential for the locale to support a self-sustaining population of ferrets that will count toward federal recovery objectives.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 11: State Game Commission Final Approval Sought for 2009 Habitat Stamp Program Projects.

Presented by Dale A. Hall – The Department will forward to the State Game Commission for approval, recommendations made by 5 regional Citizen Advisory Committees concerning the Habitat Stamp Program’s 2009 and 2010 habitat improvement project lists.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 12: Presentation of the FY 2008 3rd Quarter Depredation Report.

Presented by Barbara Coulter – The Department will present the FY 2008 3rd Quarter Depredation Report for approval. The report will describe numbers and resolution of depredation complaints in accordance with, NMAC, and will summarize recent
notable depredation events.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 13: Update on the Upland Game and Waterfowl Rule Development Process.

Presented by Tim Mitchusson – The Department will present the Commission with prospective changes that have been developed to date for the Upland Game and Waterfowl rules. These changes will include the proposal to move the migratory bird species (dove, teal, and Sandhill cranes) that currently reside in the Upland Game Rule, to the Waterfowl and Migratory Bird Rule.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 14: Petroleum Development Review Procedures and Oil and Gas Subcommittee Report.

Presented by Bob Jenks and Luke Shelby – The Department of Game and Fish recently designated liaisons and established an interagency coordination protocol with the Bureau of Land Management to evaluate the potential consequences to wildlife and habitat resulting from proposed oil and gas leasing activities, and requests for exceptions to seasonal restrictions in specially designated areas. The relative effectiveness of coordination efforts to date will be presented. Findings from specific Department reviews will also be reported. The State Game Commission Oil and Gas Subcommittee will offer perspectives to the full Commission.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 15: Current Status of the Open Gate Hunting and Fishing Access Program.

Presented by Aaron Roberts – The Department will present to the Commission the current status of the Open Gate Hunting and
Fishing Access Program. This report will include the total number of enrolled properties, the number of properties currently under
negotiation, and the access opportunities each represent. The Department also will summarize funds expended to date for obtaining access
for hunting, fishing, and wildlife enjoyment activities. Further direction will be sought from the Commission.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 16: Briefing on Status of Bighorn Sheep Restoration in the Dry Cimarron River Drainage of NE New


Presented by Darrel Weybright – In August 2007, 35 Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep were released in the Dry Cimarron River Drainage. To date, approximately 33 remain alive and in the vicinity of the release site. An augmentation is proposed in August 2008 from the Wheeler Peak Wilderness. These bighorn are monitored weekly from the ground and monthly from the Department aircraft.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 17: General Public Comments (Comments Limited to 3 Minutes).

AGENDA ITEM NO. 18: Overview of the Private Land Deer Conservation Incentive Program and Future Plans.

Presented by Barry Hale – The Department will present a description and brief history of the Private Land Deer Conservation Incentive Program. This presentation will include some of the on-the-ground progress to date as well as changes that have been implemented to improve the overall program and encourage additional participation by qualified landowners. The Department will seek guidance from the Commission on how to proceed in expanding the program further.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 19: Draft Recovery Plan for 2 Riparian Rodents listed as Endangered under the Wildlife Conservation Act (§17-2-40.1 NMSA, 1978).

Presented by Leland J. S. Pierce – Based on preliminary review at the April 2008 Game Commission meeting and subsequent revisions, the draft Recovery Plan for the meadow jumping mouse (Zapus hudsonius) and the Arizona montane vole (Microtus montanus arizonensis) will be presented to the Commission for review and approval. The meadow jumping mouse is found in many mountain ranges and along the Rio Grande and Rio Chama drainages, and has shown very sharp declines in population numbers. The Arizona montane vole, also a riparian species like the jumping mouse, is found in a limited range in Catron County. The Plan, as directed by the WCA, describes status and conservation needs of the species and identifies actions that will protect and enhance native populations, allowing eventual downlisting of the 2 species.


AGENDA ITEM NO. 20: Status of Aquatic Nuisance Species Management Planning in New Mexico.

Presented by Brian Lang – Department staff will brief the Game Commission about ongoing efforts to facilitate management planning and action coordination statewide to diminish prospects of non-native aquatic species being introduced into New Mexico. This work in part involves the “Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers” program. Further Commmission direction will be sought to address this significant resource threat.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 21: Review and Revision of the Department Strategic Plan.

Presented by Bill Graves – The Department has initiated the annual review and revision of its 5-year strategic plan as a component of the FY 2010 Operating Budget request process which must be completed by September 1, 2008. As it has been 5 years since a major revision was prepared, this year’s update will represent a more substantive effort. The Department will present an overview of the process and timeline for completing this task.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 22: Preliminary Budget Planning Discussion.

Presented by Patrick Block – In preparation for development of the Department’s Fiscal Year 2010 Budget request, the Department will provide a synopsis of the Fiscal Year 2009 Operating Budget and appropriations for Capital Improvement Projects. The discussion will include information relative to revenue projections, fund balances and potential program expansions. The Department will also seek Commission guidance on budget priorities, areas of emphasis, and any desired changes in the budget request that the Department will present to the Commission in August.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 23: Legislative Initiatives Discussion for 2009 Session.

Presented by Pat Block and Luke Shelby – This item is an opportunity for the Commission, Department, and public to provide input on items to be addressed during the 2009 Legislative Session. The Commission will provide direction to the Department regarding potential legislative initiatives to develop and pursue through the appropriate executive agency process for the 2009 Legislative Session.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 24: Proposal for Developing Increased Shooting Opportunities.

Presented by Martin Frentzel – The Department will provide the Commission with a proposal to initiate a Department administered program to encourage youth participation in shooting activities and hunting. Initial implementation may be possible in FY 2009 with further development incorporated in the FY 2010 budget planning process.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 25: General Public Comments (Comments Limited to 3 Minutes).

AGENDA ITEM NO. 26: Closed Executive Session.

The State Game Commission will adjourn into Closed Executive Session to discuss litigation, personnel, and acquisition or disposal of real property or water rights, and pursuant to Section 10-15-1(H)(1), NMSA, 1978, and to discuss matters related to the determination of sending “Notice of Commission Contemplated Action” for outfitter and/or guide registration to any identified individual(s) that may have violated regulating procedures and conduct as per 19.30.8, and 19.31.2, NMAC.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 27: Notice of Commission Contemplated Action.

Presented by Dan Brooks – The State Game Commission after meeting in Executive Session will determine and if necessary direct the Department to send a Notice of Commission Contemplated Action to any outfitter or guide that evidence and information indicate may have violated regulating procedures and conduct or any other matter contrary to 19.30.8, NMAC, or Section 17-2A-3, NMSA, 1978.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 28: Naming Recently Acquired Conservation Areas.

Presented by Luke Shelby and Matt Wunder – Department recommendations will be provided for Commission approval to name 2 recently-acquired wildlife areas using the special land conservation appropriation. One area is situated in Roosevelt County and 1 area is
situated in Grant County.

AGENDA ITEM NO. 29: Status of Department Efforts Regarding OHV Safety and Related Statutory Matters:

Presented by Dan Brooks – Department staff will provide the Commission a brief overview of ongoing efforts regarding Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) statutes and related safety and enforcement actions in New Mexico. Training and enforcement activities of Department Conservation Officers will be summarized with respect to Sections 66-3-1001 to 66-3-1020, NMSA 1978, which dictate OHV use restrictions on public lands. The summary also will describe interagency committee actions related to these statutory responsibilities.
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