Although Immigration reform efforts are the priority right now, limited resources curtail a great deal of activities we'd normally be involved in. we'd like to see the billboard in action educating people in neighborhoods about the realities vs the propaganda, but we have what we have. But there are still other things we can do, and SOS is still concerned with the rights and culture of native born Californians. Especially constitutional rights.
The county of Sacramento is currently infringing on those rights. State fish and wildlife regulations provide that licensed fishermen may take fish within prescribed seasons, and by spears and spearguns. The county of Sacramento has been enforcing a code that prohibits spears, spearguns, and other weapons in County parks, but one, the American River Parkway, is long, and fronts the American river on both sides for miles. The county parks rangers have been warning fishermen that they will be cited for violations if they are on the parkway with spearguns or spears. We have requested an item be placed on the next Board of Supervisors meeting agenda to add an exemption to the code to temper the parks code so it is in compliance with the state's constitutional right to fish article.
It is our interpretation that the state has the sole power to set season and method of take, and that the Right-To-Fish initiative that was enacted in 1910 restricts the county from setting additional barriers for fishermen
The section of the constitution reads as so:
ARTICLE 1 DECLARATION OF RIGHTS
Section 25. The people shall have the right to fish upon and from
the public lands of the State and in the waters thereof, excepting
upon lands set aside for fish hatcheries, and no land owned by the
State shall ever be sold or transferred without reserving in the
people the absolute right to fish thereupon; and no law shall ever be
passed making it a crime for the people to enter upon the public
lands within this State for the purpose of fishing in any water
containing fish that have been planted therein by the State;
provided, that the legislature may by statute, provide for the season
when and the conditions under which the different species of fish
may be taken.
The state Fish and Wildlife agency has set the season and method, and the county is threatening fishermen that they may not enter upon the parkway for the purpose of fishing with the equipment authorized to do so by the state. We believe this infringes upon the rights of California fishermen, and belittles the effort that the people engaged in getting this initiative passed. The county has a remedy as any of us do, and that's to lobby the state for changes in method of take. In the meantime, the people should not be deprived of access by threats or arrest.
We have dropped off packets to the Board of Supervisors with a short resolution containing an exemption to the county code for fishermen. We're now waiting to see if the item will be added and heard by the board at its' next meeting. The resolution reads as so:
We, The Sacramento County Board of Supervisors do resolve:
Whereas The California State Constitution, article 1, section 25 grants the people the right to fish from the states public lands, and
Whereas that same article vests the regulatory authority solely to the state to set season and method of take for fishing, and
Whereas Article 1; section 25 of the state constitution also restricts the state from passing any law prohibiting the people from entering the public lands for the purposes of fishing in any waters containing fish that were planted by the state, and
Whereas the County of Sacramento contains lands adjacent to, or directly connected to waterways that contain fish planted by the state, and
Whereas certain county ordinances may currently contain language that may be interpreted as restricting a person's right to fish using certain methods authorized by the state, so
We the County Supervisors, do hereby resolve to make the following change to Sacramento County Code 9.36.060
(Existing) No person other than peace officers in the discharge of their duties shall use, maintain, possess, fire, or discharge any firearm, air gun, spring gun, bow and arrow, slingshot, or any other weapon potentially dangerous to wildlife or human safety, except in areas, at times, and under conditions designated by the director for such use. A violation of the provisions of this section is a misdemeanor. (SCC 576 § 15, 1983.)
(Addition) This section shall not apply to activities conducted pursuant to Article 1; Section 25 of the California State Constitution, when such actitvities have been authorized by the state legislature or any agency empowered by the state legislature to regulate fishing activities, so long as persons are actively engaged in fishing, going to or from fishing, and in possession of a California state fishing license when and where such license is required by state law. This exemption shall not prohibit the application of any other state law not supersceded by Article 1; section 25 of the California State Constitution.
Be it resolved