Tacoma Weekly: Hatchery closing could devastate local fishing – and beyond

From the Tacoma Weekly:

Fishermen – tribal, commercial and sports – around the south Puget Sound area could be receiving more bad news if a proposal to close the 90-year-old Voights Creek Hatchery is approved in the state’s final budget later this month.

While recent statements from state wildlife officials and Puyallup Tribe officials working on plans to save the hatchery reflect cautious optimism that the hatchery might yet survive, there is plenty of concern to go around – in all quarters of the fishing industry – if it doesn’t.

“Anytime we hear about something like the possibility of a hatchery closing, it is a big concern,” says Tony Floor, director of fishing affairs at Northwest Marine Trade Association, the largest trade organization for boating in the state, which has 850 members.

“And the Voights Creek Hatchery is one of the most productive, especially for Coho.”