Will Schwarzenegger veto “No prospecting” signs on the Klamath?

Dave McCracken requests letters to Schwarzenegger to Veto Bill

Each summer, visitors from far and wide come to the Klamath River. Since 1852 many of those travelers are looking for gold. They also have a wonderful outdoor recreation time with family and friends. The Dredgers are facing new regulations that would lead to sharp curtailment of the prospecting activity on the River. They’d appreciate your help right now in sending a letter, fax or email to Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, asking him to please veto this bill.

Dave McCracken has sent word to all those interested in prospecting for gold and similar recreation on the river that Assembly Bill 1032 has passed through the California legislature and is now on its way to Governor Schwarzenegger for his signature. AB 1032 is a bill that is intended to modify Section 5353 of the California Fish & Game Code to allow the Department of Fish & Game to arbitrarily close and/or curtail suction dredge activity along numerous waterways in California, which would no doubt include the Klamath River that we love.

For liberty for the dredgers to pursue their recreation on the Klamath, the concen is that they must encourage the Governor to kill this bill right now, or suffer the consequences later. Further information and help with this can be found at the following link: http://www.goldgold.com/legal/1032actionalert_governor.htm

Liberty to keep the Klamath open to recreational prospecting is dependent on the outcome of this bill.


  • Patrick

    If the science holds up that the suction dredges truely do damage the fish spawning habitat, then continuing to allow the dredging would be a mistake. Sport fishing and it’s related businesses (Lodging, guiding, tackle, etc.) contribute far more to the local economy than gold dredging ever did. Not to mention the danger of damaging the fish population itself. The Klamath salmon and steelhead have a tough enough time of it with the algae infested water in the Klamath.

  • Jayne Guiducci

    Wow! Arnold needs to get
    get bill thrown away. He
    took Vallejo California’s
    ferry rights away . I was
    reading that last night.
    I will write a letter on
    the river tonight. I hope
    it helps… Good Luck

  • Geza Polony

    I can’t really comment on the merits of this bill, but something needs to be done to protect the salmon. No one wants to curb agriculture, no one wants to stop dredging–but some sacrifices are going to have to be made lest the Klamath become a dead river altogether.

  • Someone with thoughts

    I agree with Patrick. This is all this town has left why not show the people we care. The dredges also are a hassle to those of us that love to float the river in the summers.

  • Another person with thoughts

    My boyfriend is a gold dredger. He says the dredges attract fish who like to eat from the stirred up waters. There is no harm to the salmon so long as dredgers keep away from spawning areas. I know the New 49ers Gold Prospecting Club has taken care to instruct the members not to dredge in certain areas, to protect salmon. It seems to me that the whole anti-dredging issue is a sham, as it doesn’t harm the fish. More likely certain elements of our community want to discourage others from being here.

  • Jim Foley

    I am a gold dredger. Gold dredging needs to be kept in perspective with regards to the environment and alleged harm to fish. First point I would like to make is that there are already sufficient regulations in place to protect fish and the enviroment.

    We are not allowed to dredge in spawning waters when the fish have returned to spawn. That is why they close waters to dredging at certain times of the year.

    Most, if not all, dredging is done in places where the bottom gravels are not suitable for fish spawning, like places that have larger boulders instead of suitable gravel for salmon redds.

    One comments spoke of curtailing or better regulations if there was science to show harm. To this date, there is no credible scientific study that shows any harm to fish or biota from suction dredging. Quite the contrary, all studies have shown either de-mimimus, or inconsequestial impact to fish. Some studies word it differently, but the meaning is that as far as harming fish goes, this is a non-issue. The studies use words like, “local, short term affects”. “Affects so small that they are not measurable”, even considering multiple dredges.

    One other thing that is often overlooked when suction dredge mining issues come up is that a mining claim is private property in every sense of the word, as it pertains to mineral removal.

    The reason I say this is because if you regulate dredging to the point of prohibition, you have then effectively taken the claim owners private property without just compensation. The federal mining law is the controlling law in this respect and garantees the claim owners right to develop his mining interest.

    Be that aside, most, if not all miners, adhere to the multiple use concept of our public lands.

    I thank the other commentators who posted their frank and honest opinions regarding this issue.

  • Rusty Blevins

    A few years ago all we ever heard was save the West from the terrible loggers that were pillaging our beautiful timber and destroying the spotted owls. Or stop the senseless slaughter of the cute little sea lions and seals. Now look where we are, the loggers are almost gone and the same groups that wanted to save the seals are now ready to kill them to save the salmon.
    One of the previous comments mentioned about the fish bringing more to the town than dredgers.I would deffer with them today. There are far more miners and families that visit Happy Camp than fishermen. However that is not what is important. The important thing for Happy Camp today is the total number of people that visit.Fisherman,rafters,miners.Together they keep the stores open. No one group can keep the town alive.

  • JonKirby

    ok spent the rest of the night finding out the answer—
    Gov vetoed the bill.
    Good news to the prospectors although Dave himself had to contribute a hefty sum to the lobbyists to kill the bill.

    Good time to contribute.

  • James Box

    I have spent hundreds of dollars in my visits to Happy Camp to prospect with the 49ers’ Club. I have rented rooms, purchased gas and food, mining supplies, and have thoroughly enjoyed my time there. Dave and the 49ers’ Club bring much money and many dollars to the community. It would be a shame to see them regulated out of business, and a great blow to prospecting.

  • dhl

    I have restructured several businesses. Now it is the goverments time to clean up. You have to get rid of all the officals and stat from scrach.
    Our goverment is no loger for the people, by the people.
    It is all controled by banks and there officals.

    I am taxed at 64% for taxes and insurance. Why work?

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