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Fish & Game Approves Recreational Salmon Fishing On California Waters

HALF MOON BAY (KCBS)- The California Fish and Game Commission has decided there will be a normal recreational salmon fishing season starting April 2nd.

Many fishermen in California have been waiting for what turned out to be a unanimous decision by the five-member commission and now the time has come to return to the waters.

Captain Smitty, owner of the boat named Riptide at Pillar Point Harbor is excited about Monday's decision.

"The weather should be good for us, the fishing should be excellent. We're looking forward to a great season this year," said the captain.

Smitty added that last year's salmon season was a bust.

"The governor in his infinite wisdom opened up the salmon season last year when it shouldn't have been opened," he said.

Fishermen opposed the season because there wasn't a return of fish to the stream, according to Smitty.

The decision will allow fishing in state waters from Camp Mendocino to Point Sur after The Pacific Fishery Management Council cleared the way for recreational fishing in Federal waters.

Fish and Game estimates the opening weekend of salmon fishing could generate an economic impact of more than $8 million.

Meanwhile there's still no decision on whether commercial fishing or in-river recreational fishing for salmon will be allowed, but that may come next month.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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