June 10th, 2013 | Published in Budget
On Saturday, the state senate approved a budget rider that would further water down the fish consumption rate process. You can find the actual rider here.
Here’s the important text from the document:
Within this amount, funding is provided for the department to retain a state university to conduct a general population survey of fish consumption by state residents, collect and analyze data concerning the commercial and recreational catch of fish in state waters, and prepare a report compiling and evaluating the data and developing statistics. The survey and data analysis shall be used in rule-making activity to revise the human health criteria for the water quality standards for surface water in chapter 173-201A WAC. The survey and data analysis shall be designed and used to determine (a) the distribution of long-term and average consumption of fin fish and shellfish by state residents over their lifetime that accounts for seasonality in consumption rates, (b) the extent to which fin fish and shellfish consumption rates vary among all subpopulations and in different geographic areas of the state, (c) the profile of survey respondents, including average body weight, age, gender, and ethnicity; drinking water source and average amount of water consumed; residence and geographic location, (d) the identification by species of fin fish and shellfish consumed, including whether the fish is a marine, freshwater, or anadromous species, (e) the source of the fin fish and shellfish consumed, in particular where the fish was raised and landed, (f) the body part(s) of fin fish and shellfish consumed, and (g) the preparation and cooking methods used. The survey design shall be subject to peer review and public comment prior to conducting the survey and shall include review by at least nine entities, including but not limited to: The national marine fisheries service, the Columbia river intertribal fish commission, the department of fish and wildlife, the department of agriculture, other four-year state universities, municipalities, and a national nonprofit research institution. The report shall compile and evaluate the data and develop statistics which shall be subject to peer review by the entities specified in this subsection and public comment.