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Old 05-20-2014, 03:53 PM
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bigsur bigsur is offline
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Default TVA River's-TVA Meeting May 27, 2014

Below is information for an upcoming TVA fish hatchery related meeting in Knoxville, TN. on May 27th, 2014 at 6PM (more info below for location specifics). I encourage people to attend, no matter what your interest, group, or affiliation with the river. If you will note for those who cannot attend you can sign up for onlline access. It's easy to critique something but only by particiapating in these type of events will officials be conscious and aware that we are out here and care, get involved!




KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Representatives from the Tennessee Valley Authority, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency and Georgia Department of Natural Resources (the Agencies) will host a public meeting on Tuesday, May 27, 2014, to receive input on long-term funding recommendations under consideration by the Agencies that will continue popular trout stocking programs in reservoirs and tailwaters of certain TVA dams across the region.

The Agencies are seeking ideas and input from angling groups, local and regional businesses, tourism organizations and the local governments that realize the direct and indirect benefits of having fishable trout waters in their communities.

The public meeting will run from 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm at TVA headquarters, 400 W. Summit Hill Dr., Knoxville, TN in the East Tower Library auditorium. The public can attend the meeting either in person or by webinar that you can sign up for at http://www.tva.com/trout.

The session will include a brief presentation summarizing the issue and the Trout Hatchery Funding Stakeholder Working Group recommendations. Attendees can ask questions and provide comments on the recommendations. The meeting will be recorded and posted to the Agencies websites where additional comments may be posted via the internet.

On May 17, 2013, U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander and representatives from the Agencies formalized an agreement to cooperate in seeking a permanent source of funding to support the continuation of trout hatchery production by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service’s National Fish Hatchery System for stocking in TVA tailwaters and reservoirs in Tennessee and Georgia.

As part of the agreement, TVA committed to provide more than $900,000 per year from 2014 through 2016 to support federal fish hatchery operations that produce the trout for stocking. The Agencies also agreed to form a working group with key stakeholders who benefit from the recreation-based trout stocking to help identify a long-term funding source.

The Trout Hatchery Funding Stakeholder Working Group conducted two meetings in 2013 and developed four recommended long-term funding alternatives for the Agencies to consider.

Currently, non-native trout stocked near some of TVA’s dams are raised at three federal fish hatcheries operated by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service: Erwin National Fish Hatchery in Erwin, TN.; Dale Hollow National Fish Hatchery in Celina, TN.; and Chattahoochee Forest National Fish Hatchery in Suches, GA.

The Fish and Wildlife Service stocks trout at a number of TVA facilities; and provides eggs and fingerling trout to the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency for further grow out and stocking at TVA facilities. TVA supports the stocking programs by enhancing the aquatic habitat through oxygenation systems, foregoing electric generation and providing minimum flows to help adequately maintain cooler water temperatures. However, in most of the waters, the trout cannot naturally reproduce, requiring regular stocking to maintain fishable populations.

The short-term funding agreement allows for the continuation of trout stocking for recreational fishing in the colder water of the reservoirs or tailwaters at 12 TVA dams in Tennessee and Georgia: Appalachia Dam on the Hiwassee River; Blue Ridge Dam on the Toccoa River; Cherokee Dam on the Holston River; Ft. Patrick Henry Dam on the South Fork Holston River; Normandy Dam on the Duck River; Norris Dam on the Clinch River; Ocoee Dam No. 1 on the Ocoee River; South Holston Dam on the South Fork Holston River; Tellico Dam on the Little Tennessee River; Tims Ford Dam on the Elk River; Watauga Dam on the Watauga River; and Wilbur Dam on the Watauga River.

The Tennessee Valley Authority is a corporate agency of the United States that provides electricity for business customers and local power distributors serving 9 million people in parts of seven southeastern states. TVA receives no taxpayer funding, deriving virtually all of its revenues from sales of electricity. In addition to operating and investing its revenues in its electric system, TVA provides flood control, navigation and land management for the Tennessee River system and assists local power companies and state and local governments with economic development and job creation.
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Old 05-25-2014, 02:54 PM
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Here is another reminder for Tuesday May 27th meeting at TVA, can be viewed online if you cannot make it. (see link for signing up in advance above).
I hope no matter what your interest in the TVA fishery program is you will attend and let the powers that be aware we are out there and are concerned. It's like voting, your opinion means nothing unless you get involved. Look for me there and I welcome everyone to sit as a group to increase visibility, whether TU member, board member or concerned citizen. I am easy to spot, I am like Don Kirk always the prettiest in the room! Look for my green TU Hat.
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Old 05-26-2014, 07:34 AM
Joe Congleton Joe Congleton is offline
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If you are a trout fisherman , this is a CANT MISS meeting for you. From strictly a headcount of interested people, your attendance will show your concern for this issue of TVA pulling its support for the hatchery fisheries programs for the tailwaters.

In case you are not aware of the issues, the federal government (through the new politics implementation) has started de-emphasizing non native fishes and has given the states notice that it is decreasing or eliminating funding for trout egg, fry, etc production. Previously the federal funding from Fish and Wildlife Service etc---including money from the the Corps (Caney-Cumberlnd) and TVA (every tailwater cold water fishery East of the Caney)---has been critical to the creation and maintenance of the trout stocks in the Tennessee and southeastern US tailwaters, as well as all the state stocked streams in Tn, NC, SC, Georgia, Ky etc. I am not sure of the exact per cent age of the cost but it is more than half the annual costs I think.

SO if the TVA and federal funding goes away, where does the replacement money come from to continue the trout production---or does the excellent tailwater fishing we now have below TVA dams just disappear due to lack of
fish numbers?

Some of you may say well l just fish the Park so this is irrelevant to me? Well take the thousands of folks who fish the tailwaters and the stocked streams throughout the state and the adjoining states and put them in the Park with you on those small streams and see how well the Park can sustain that pressure. I hope you can see it is critical to ALL trout fisheries in the state that the tailwater trout programs continue as is or improved.

Currently, as the previous posts state, TVA has agreed to fund the trout programs for two years at current levels. After that, it indeed TVA does really stop the funding, it will fall solely on TWRA to create or maintain some replacement programs to continue and maintain the trout programs.

So what will TWRA do? Raise costs of a trout stamp to the true economic cost of producing the fish? Can you envision a trout stamp costing perhaps a hundred dollars a year or more? If TWRA and other states cut back on the trout stocking to what TWRA afford to produce , it almost certainly will dramatically change limit structures and then we all have to deal with the local political firefight that comes from changing trout limits in certain counties etc? It makes to much sense to have an annual kill limit, and to charge each angler for the removal of the fish based on the cost of the fish , but state politics won't let that happen. Lee Wulff said at a national TU convention in the 70's that a trout is too valuble to be caught just once, and while I agree with his thoughts and am strictly Catch and Release, there are legions of folks who want their five fish a day and the rehash of all the limit issues will be a very tough fight local issue that is sure to occur if trout funding is severely impacted.

How TWRA deals with the loss of funding is another wholes set of issues, and l am told they have some back up plans but it cannot be a full replacement of the loss the federal pullout will create, there simply is not enough money available through the public or the state to support it.

TVA's continuation of the annual financial support to the trout programs is critical. They are having a meeting to tell you about the loss of your trout fisheries. Headccounts will be made . A small turnout will signal that nobody cares . Do you care enough about it to attend?
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Old 05-29-2014, 11:43 AM
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Below is a link straight to the comments section to TVA hatchery issue:

https://tvaforms.wufoo.com/forms/fis...-comment-form/

This is a different link than to TVA webanair and takes you straight to the comments section.

We have had hunderds of people who have viewed this post since I first added it and I hope everyone will take a few minutes to add their comments. Please pass the link on to everyone who will use it.

I have added my post comments below as a possible guideline for others to use.
Feel free to use your own, write what you know, everyone has a different outlook on an issue.

1. Please be respectful in comments, I would imagine rants are tossed
2. List your affiliations, group associations increase impact


My submitted post as a possible example:

"I attended the meeting Tuesday night and appreciate the chance to respond. I am a TVA/KUB ratepayer, an active member in three Trout Unlimited chapters in Tennessee, and a Tennessee and North Carolina fishing license holder with trout stamps in both states. This is in addition to living within 10 minutes of the Norris dam tail waters and fishing these tail waters 3-4 times a week. I feel an answer must be found for future trout hatchery funding no matter what proposal is utilized. The impact and importance to the cities and counties located within these tail waters goes far beyond the simple stocking of trout, this affects the security of workers and the employers ability to provide these jobs within these areas. The simple task of buying gas, food, and supplies whether a fisherman, boater, or the general public can affect the economy of these areas and should be recognized and valued. Please continue including the general public in these ongoing discussions and workshops and count my vote as a yes for future funding."



Joe has added in another post for a link to Senator Alexander and I appreciate that. I will add more links to those i think can and should help with this issue. Thanks!
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Last edited by bigsur; 05-29-2014 at 12:43 PM..
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Old 05-29-2014, 12:47 PM
Hoosier Hoosier is offline
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Big sur

Hope you don't mind but I paraphrased a bit from what you have to fit those of us from out of state. To those who may be from out of state, feel free to plagarize from what I submitted...

"I was unable to attend the meeting Tuesday night, but have reviewed electronic media for information regarding this current situation and appreciate the chance to provide comments. Though I live two states away and my closest Trout Water is about 3.5 hours away, I consider TN my primary trout fishing waters. I make several trips a year to TN specifically with the intention to fish your trout waters, from tailwaters, other stocked streams, and waters not stocked. I have hired guides, lodged at several different hotels, cabins, and campgrounds in your State, with the centerpiece purpose being on going trout fishing. I recently purchaced a drift boat with a specific intent to come to TN tailwaters to expand my trout fishing oppotunities. I hope local cities, counties and the State appreciates the importance of myself and like minded trout enthusiast who enjoy your State's resources and opportunities to fish quality managed trout waters. I have to beleive that our impact on the economies of these areas is significant and goes far beyond the simple stocking of trout, This issue affects the security of workers and the employers ability to provide these jobs within these areas. The simple task of buying gas, food, and supplies whether a fisherman, boater, or the general public can affect the economy of these areas and should be recognized and valued. I feel an answer must be found for future trout hatchery funding no matter what proposal is utilized. Please continue including the general public in these ongoing discussions and workshops and count my vote as a yes for future funding.
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Old 05-29-2014, 01:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoosier View Post
Big sur

Hope you don't mind but I paraphrased a bit from what you have to fit those of us from out of state. To those who may be from out of state, feel free to plagarize from what I submitted...

"I was unable to attend the meeting Tuesday night, but have reviewed electronic media for information regarding this current situation and appreciate the chance to provide comments. Though I live two states away and my closest Trout Water is about 3.5 hours away, I consider TN my primary trout fishing waters. I make several trips a year to TN specifically with the intention to fish your trout waters, from tailwaters, other stocked streams, and waters not stocked. I have hired guides, lodged at several different hotels, cabins, and campgrounds in your State, with the centerpiece purpose being on going trout fishing. I recently purchaced a drift boat with a specific intent to come to TN tailwaters to expand my trout fishing oppotunities. I hope local cities, counties and the State appreciates the importance of myself and like minded trout enthusiast who enjoy your State's resources and opportunities to fish quality managed trout waters. I have to beleive that our impact on the economies of these areas is significant and goes far beyond the simple stocking of trout, This issue affects the security of workers and the employers ability to provide these jobs within these areas. The simple task of buying gas, food, and supplies whether a fisherman, boater, or the general public can affect the economy of these areas and should be recognized and valued. I feel an answer must be found for future trout hatchery funding no matter what proposal is utilized. Please continue including the general public in these ongoing discussions and workshops and count my vote as a yes for future funding.

Hoosier, thanks for quick response, my submitted post is simply suggested, you added what is your personal experience that is exactly what it should be, write what you know! Please pass the link on to all interested parties who enjoy our tailwaters in Tennessee and Georgia.
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Old 05-30-2014, 08:51 AM
flyman01 flyman01 is offline
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Thanks Bigsur for providing the link to the comment section for the hatchery issue. This was my comment:

Residing in Ohio coupled with a family emergency prevented me from attending the Tuesday meeting in person or via Webinar; with that being said, I would like to provide some comments.

Living in Southwest Ohio, we have two small rivers within a 1-1/2 hour drive that harbor trout. Because there is an overall lack of trout streams locally, these two fisheries are heavily pressured and visiting them can be more of a hassle than it is worth. Due to this situation, I started exploring alternatives via the internet back in 1998 and read several articles regarding the Hiwassee River which boasted quality trout fishing and beautiful scenery. It did not take much convincing for me and two of my close friends to get in the car and make the 5-1/2 hour trek to try this fishery ourselves. Since that day, we together, individually or along with numerous others have traveled back to Tennessee to fish the Hiwassee, Tellico, Clinch and South Holston Rivers, countless times to enjoy the exceptional trout fishing and beauty of the surroundings. By virtue of these trips, we have stimulated the local commerce through purchases of gas, food at stores and restaurants, camping, hotel accommodations, cabin lodging, fishing guides, supplies from fly shops, license…..and the list goes on. I cannot really grasp how much money we have spent in the state of Tennessee over the past 16 years, I can imagine that figure is somewhat staggering.

Fast forward from the first trip to the Hiwassee in 1998; I purchased land and a home in Reliance Tennessee, 3 years ago which is located just a few minutes from the Hiwassee River. My plan is to eventually retire there; in the meantime I visit our home at least twice a month primarily with the intent to fish the Hiwassee. During these visits, I generally bring others along to enjoy the place and to get a chance to fish the Hiwassee or Tellico River for trout. Therefore, at this point I am not only speaking as an out-of-state enthusiast, but also as a TVA/TEC ratepayer. I am a T.U. member that has purchased an annual out of state Tennessee fishing license with a trout stamp (now an all species) since 1998. Here in Ohio, I belong to B.U.F.F. (Buckeye United Fly Fishers) and H.O.T.O (Heart of the Outdoors) two groups with a total combined membership of approximately 400 people. Between these two organizations, a significant amount of the members go on trips with me or otherwise to the tail water fisheries in Tennessee to pursue quality trout fishing. Speaking as property owner and a TVA/TEC ratepayer, I have a vested interest to see these hatcheries remaining operational and to keep the rivers stocked with trout in the future. I also speak on behalf of a multitude of others here in Ohio, who frequents the Tennessee fisheries making significant contributions toward local economies; all who want to see these hatcheries remain operational securing the trout population in these rivers.

I encourage you to be diligent in your pursuit to find a means to appropriate the funds required to keep these hatcheries operational, not just for those who enjoy trout fishing but for many who will be impacted economically if they were to close.


Thanks for your time and for including the public in these discussion and allowing comments. I trust that there will be a resolution to this quandary, please count my vote as a “yes” for future funding
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Old 05-26-2014, 06:26 PM
Joe Congleton Joe Congleton is offline
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There is a lot of historical background involved here between state and federal contributions to trout hatcheries and trout stocking over the years. Some of you have asked me for clarifications or explanations on the issues. Frankly a book could be written on it to explain it fully.

The bottom line is that THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT, PRESUMABLY FROM THE TOP DOWN, HAS TOLD THE FISH AND WIlDLIFE SERVICE TO CUT BACK OR STOP FUNDING OF TROUT HATCHEries. eggs, etc. The question is where is replacement money going to come from. The feds are saying it should come through budgets of others. Some federal agencies have stepped up to the plate and put replacement funding in their budgets and will continue support. TVA has stopped short of that kind of long term commitment and said it will only continue for two years, and formed a "task force" or discussion group to determine where other sources of funding may come from. Again, if TVA does not pick up the funding long term or some other long term source does not materialize then it falls on TWRA to figure it out with what funds can be obtained from fees, licenses, permits or some other sources. POINT IS: every body who trout fishes in the state needs to be paying a lot of attention here.as the whole game is changing. That is why it is critical to show concern by attending this meeting.

Last edited by Joe Congleton; 05-26-2014 at 07:10 PM..
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Old 05-27-2014, 05:44 PM
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Default You won't be able to whine about too many fishermen

'cause there won't be ANY fish to fish for.......I suggest everyone make this meeting. Please don't expect Joe and a handful of dedicated people stand up for your sport....
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Old 05-27-2014, 08:25 PM
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Just left the meeting some good some bad, clarification on the whole process for me. Clinch River chapter and State TU represented, check out web link next few days will have audio and comments can still be made. I made my pitch as what I am a trout fisherman, no more no less. GET INVOLVED!
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