Under what Game Fish and Parks calls the “Open Waters Compromise,” landowners have closed nine nonmeandered lakes to public access. GF&P appears to think the loss of access to water that belongs to everybody is a good thing:
The South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks Commission learned Thursday that state officials spent $1,700 on 200 signs to mark waters off-limits to the public.
The purchase was part of state’s response to a new law regulating use of nonmeandered waters that belong to the public but sit above private land. The Legislature approved the law during a June special session.
Kevin Robling, GF&P special projects coordinator, updated the commission regarding the law. “So far everything has been moving in a very positive direction,” he said [Bob Mercer, “GF&P: Nonmeandered Water Law ‘Moving in Positive Direction’,” Rapid City Journal, 2017.12.14].
Hmm… the only world in which fewer places to fish is a positive development is one in which we serve special interests who want to privatize outdoor recreation.
Our timid Legislature called a Special Session last June just to craft a one-year stopgap bill. They thus will spend the upcoming Session grappling with this issue further. The bold solution coming from the Governor’s office, according to what GF&P boss Kelly Hepler told the commission yesterday, will be to extend the stopgap law to 2021.