Angry angers and kayakers are slated to take over the Capitol rotunda tomorrow to protest a bill that would limit which river sections can be used by the public for fishing and other recreation. House Bill 187, sponsored by Rep. Ben Ferry, R-Corinne, was passed Wednesday to the House Natural Resources, Agriculture and Environment Committee for an as yet unscheduled hearing.
The bill is a response to this summer Utah Supreme Court decision granting the public access to play in all river waters, even where rivers run through private property. HB 187 would limit such access to sections of around 14 state rivers and prohibit recreational river use near homes.
Tomorrow’s rally, at 10:30 a.m., should be a scene. The Website of the Utah Rivers Council, one of the groups fighting HB 187, advises, “feel free to bring your waders, rod, boat, paddle, life jacket, whatever...” City Weekly previously wrote about the river battle here and here.