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Tuesday, February 19, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Outdoors blog

Idaho lawmakers approve invasive species emergency funding for boat inspections

This Idaho license plate, immersed in Lake Mead for nine months, emerged thickly encrusted with invasive quagga mussels; some have been scraped off to show the plate underneath. Sen. Shawn Keough, R-Sandpoint, has the plate on display in her Capitol office in Boise; she wants Idaho to avoid similar infestations in its waterways. (Betsy Z. Russell)
This Idaho license plate, immersed in Lake Mead for nine months, emerged thickly encrusted with invasive quagga mussels; some have been scraped off to show the plate underneath. Sen. Shawn Keough, R-Sandpoint, has the plate on display in her Capitol office in Boise; she wants Idaho to avoid similar infestations in its waterways. (Betsy Z. Russell)

INVASIVES – The Idaho Legislature has approved an emergency funding measure to expand the state’s boat inspection stations to check for invasive quagga and zebra mussels. The bill is headed to the governor’s desk for approval.

According to the Associated Press, the nearly $1 million budget proposal passed the House floor unanimously on today.

The money will fund three new inspection sites along the Idaho-Montana border. These checkpoints allow fish and wildlife officials to stop recreationists who are traveling with boats to check the vehicles for any sign of the mussels.

Officials confirmed larvae from either quagga or zebra mussels in multiple waterways in Montana last year. The mussels can clog pipes and cover beaches, and they travel from one part of the country mainly by hitching rides on trailered boats and other watercraft.

The bill includes an emergency clause, meaning the state will be able to use the funds immediately rather than wait for the new fiscal year.




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Rich Landers
Rich Landers joined The Spokesman-Review in 1977. He is the Outdoors editor for the Sports Department writing and photographing stories about hiking, hunting, fishing, boating, conservation, nature and wildlife and related topics.

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