Recently, Rep. Joel Kleefisch introduced AB 6, which would create a catch-and-release only bass fishing season in Wisconsin, thereby creating more fishing opporunities in the state. Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau reads as follows:
"Under administrative rules promulgated by the Department of Natural Resources (DNR), most fishing seasons open on the first Saturday of May. This bill requires DNR to establish a catch-and-release only season for bass fishing in the areas of the state where there is not a continuous open season for bass fishing.
The bill requires the catch-and-release only season to begin on the first Saturday in March and to end on the Sunday preceding the first Saturday in May.For further information see the state fiscal estimate, which will be printed as an appendix to this bill."
If passed, this would add another month of fishing for largemouth and smallmouth bass. In addition, it would benefit bait shops, boat dealers, and the tourism industry as a whole. The only logical objection could be enforcement cost--my guess is that most anglers would pay $1 or $2 more for this privilege so it should be a non-issue.
This bill should be a no-brainer--it's not even partisan. Unfortunately, with no companion measure in the State Senate, it's dead on arrival. Please email your State Senator and ask them to introduce, sponsor, and/or co-sponsor a companion bill in the State Senate.
Full text of the bill is at http://docs.legis.wisconsin.gov/2013/related/proposals/ab6