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​​​​​​​​​​​REGULATORY CHANGES


The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (Commission) is the Commonwealth agency with the authority to enforce Title 30 of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes (The Fish and Boat Code). In addition, the Commission may promulgate such rules and regulations consistent with the provisions of the Fish and Boat Code. Before a regulation becomes final, the Commission must first publish a notice of proposed rulemaking in the Pennsylvania Bulletin seeking comments, objections, or suggestions from the public. Comments are accepted for at least 30 days.  After the public comment period, the Commission considers the proposed amendment on final rulemaking. If adopted on final rulemaking, the amendment becomes effective on the date of publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin or other date specified by the Commission.

The information provided on this webpage is a summary of regulatory proposals that are being considered by the Commission, as well as final regulations. The purpose of posting this information is to make the public aware of the issues and to elicit public feedback on proposals. Comments on the proposals provide the Commission with valuable information and perspectives that will be considered and possibly incorporated into content or editorial changes. We appreciate your time and your commitment to Pennsylvania’s natural resources. The graphic within each topic will help you follow the change through the regulatory process.

View more information about the rulemaking process

If you would like to submit a comment, please send an email to 
RA-pfbcregulations@pa.gov.


Click on a title below to be taken to a regulation change.





NOTICE - Changes to List of Class A Wild Trout Waters;  July 2024

Thermometer - Comment Period
It is the Commission's policy to manage self-sustaining Class A wild trout populations as a renewable natural resource to conserve that resource and the angling it provides.  Criteria has been developed for Class A wild trout fisheries that are species specific.  The Notice outlines wild trout biomass classification criteria by species and the addition of new stream sections to the list of Class A wild trout streams which will be considered during the Commission meeting on July 22, 2024.



NOTICE - Classification of Wild Trout Streams; Proposed Additions; July 2024

Thermometer - Comment Period
It is the policy of the Commission to accurately identify and classify stream sections supporting naturally reproducing populations of trout as wild trout streams.  The Commission's Fisheries Management Division maintains the list of wild trout streams.  The Executive Director, with approval of the Commission, will publish the list of wild trout streams in the Pennsylvania Bulletin and solicit public comments.  The Notice outlines the proposed addition of streams or portions of streams to the Commission's list of wild trout streams, which will be considered during the Commission meeting on July 22, 2024.


NOTICE - Temporary Change to Fishing Regulations; Lake Frances, Luzerne County

The Commission has taken immediataction to modify 
temporary fishing regulations at Lake Frances, Luzerne County in anticipation of a complete drawdown of the lake​. ​

  • PDF of Notice published in the Pennsylvania Bulletin

​​
NOTICE - Temporary Change to Fishing Regulations; Delaware River, West Branch Delaware River and Estuary

The Commission has taken immediataction to modify 
temporary fishing regulations at Delaware River, West Branch Delaware River and Estuary to reduce the daily limit and adjust the legal harvestable ​length slot limit​



 

NOTICE - Lake Erie Creel Limits for Walleye and Yellow Perch - 2024

The Executive Director of the Commission has determined the daily limits for walleye and yellow perch in the Commonwealth waters of Lake Erie.  The daily limit for walleye has been set at 6, while the daily limit for yellow perch has been set at 30.  Additional details are outlined in the Notice below.



NOTICE - Lake Erie Commercial Fishing - 2024

The Executive Director of the Commission has determined the annual total allowable
commercial catch for walleye and yellow perch in the Commonwealth of Lake Erie. 
The limit for walleye has been set at 4,000 pounds, while the limit for yellow perch has been set at 100,000 pounds.  Additional details are outlined in the Notice below.




NOTICE - Temporary Change to Fishing Regulations; Tobyhanna Lake, Monroe County

The Commission has taken immediataction to modify 
temporary fishing regulations at Tobyhanna Lake, Monroe County in anticipation of a complete drawdown of the lake


NOTICE - Boat and Marine Forfeiture; Maximum Amount

The Commission is responsible for determining the annual maximum amount for boat and marine forfeiture sales based on the maximum amount in the year prior, and adjusting to reflect the change in Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers in the United States.  The Commission has set the maximum for 2024 at $7,740, as reflected in the published Notice.
  • PDF of Notice published in the Pennsylvania Bulletin​​




NOTICE - Mentored Youth Fishing Day Program; Trout 2024

The Commission has designated March 30, 2024, as Mentored Youth Fishing Day for trout, beginning at 8 a.m. and ending at 7:30 p.m. in stocked trout waters designated under 58 Pa. Code § 63.3 relating to fishing in stocked trout waters.  This designation is effective upon publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.



NOTICE - Classification of Wild Trout Streams; Proposed Additions and Revisions; April 2024

It is the policy of the Commission to accurately identify and classify stream sections supporting naturally reproducing populations of trout as wild trout streams.  The Commission's Fisheries Management Division maintains the list of wild trout streams.  The Executive Director, with approval of the Commission, will publish the list of wild trout streams in the Pennsylvania Bulletin and solicit public comments.  The Notice outlines the proposed addition of streams or portions of streams to the Commission's list of wild trout streams, which was considered during the Commission meeting on April 29, 2024.


NOTICE - Temporary Change to Fishing Regulations; Kahle Lake, Clarion and Venango Counties

The Commission has taken immediataction to modify 
temporary fishing regulations at Kahle Lake, Clarion and
Venango Counties in anticipation of a complete drawdown of the lake.  


NOTICE - Temporary Change to Fishing Regulations; Delaware River, West Branch Delaware River and Estuary

The Commission has taken immediataction to modify temporary fishing regulations at Delaware River, West Branch Delaware River and Estuary.  This action is being taken to meet the requirements of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC).




NOTICE - Proposed Exemptions to Allow for the Continued Stocking of Class A Stream Sections

The Commission determines whether to allow trout stocking to continue on its Class A wild trout streams.    This Notice outlines the proposed exemption which was considered during the Commission meeting on January 22, 2024. 




FISHING - Endangered Species

48A-352

This final rulemaking updates and further clarifies the Commission's regulations pertaining endangered species; threatened species; and candidate species. This rulemaking was considered during the Commission meeting on January 22, 2024. The final rulemaking will go into effect upon publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.



BOATING - Final Rulemaking - Boating Restrictions

48A-347

This rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations 
pertaining to allowable electric motor speeds and clarify horsepower restrictions. This rulemaking was considered during the Commission meeting on January 22, 2024. The final rulemaking will go into effect upon publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.



NOTICE - Approved Courses of Instruction in Boating Safety Education

Annually, the Commission publishes a list of approved boating safety education courses, which establish proof of competency through the successful completion of a course.  This list can be updated throughout the year.



NOTICE - Changes to List of Class A Wild Trout Waters;  January 2024

It is the Commission's policy to manage self-sustaining Class A wild trout populations as a renewable natural resource to conserve that resource and the angling it provides.  Criteria has been developed for Class A wild trout fisheries that are species specific.  The Notice outlines wild trout biomass classification criteria by species and the addition of new stream sections to the list of Class A wild trout streams which was considered during the Commission meeting on January 22, 2024. 



NOTICE - Classification of Wild Trout Streams; Additions and Revisions; January 2024

The Commission maintains the wild trout streams program where stream remoteness and populations of naturally reproducing trout combine to offer sport fishing opportunities for anglers in a remote setting.  This Notice outlines the proposed additions and revisions of streams or portions of streams to the Commission's list of wild trout streams, which was considered during the Commission meeting on January 22, 2024.



NOTICE - Triploid Grass Carp Permit Application

Thermometer - Comment Period
The Commission may issue permits to stock triploid grass carp in Commonwealth waters.  Triploid grass carp are sterile fish that may, in appropriate circumstances, help control aquatic vegetation.  The Commission seeks public input with respect to any proposed stockings of triploid grass carp in waters having a surface area of more than 5 acres.



NOTICE - Special Regulation Designations;  October 2023

The Commission has approved guidelines regarding encouraging public participation on possible changes to the designation of streams, stream sections or lakes for special regulation programs. Under 58 Pa. Code Chapter 65 (relating to special fishing regulations), the Commission designates or redesignates certain streams, stream sections and lakes as being subject to special fishing regulations.  This Notice extends the limit to one stream managed under the catch and release fly-fishing only regulation, and was considered during the Commission meeting on October 23, 2023. 



FISHING - Special Fishing Regulations 

48A-351

This rulemaking updates and further clarifies 
language in § 65.26 (relating to extended trout season).  This rulemaking was considered during the Commission meeting on October 23, 2023.  The final rulemaking will go into effect upon publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.



FISHING - Special Fishing Regulations 

48A-350

This rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations
pertaining to implementation of miscellaneous special regulations on the 12 stream sections that would manage brown trout with catch and release regulations.  This rulemaking was considered during the Commission meeting on October 23, 2023.  The final rulemaking will go into effect upon publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
 


BOATING - Operator Provided Equipment - Special Regulations Counties

48A-349

This rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations 
pertaining to personal flotation devices.  This rulemaking was considered during the Commission meeting on October 23, 2023.  The final rulemaking will go into effect upon publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin. 



BOATING - Special Regulations Counties

48A-348

This final rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations 
pertaining to Susquehanna River, Lake Frederick, located in Dauphin County.  This rulemaking was considered during the Commission meeting on October 23, 2023.  The final rulemaking will go into effect upon publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.


NOTICE - Proposed Changes to List of Class A Wild Trout Waters;  October 2023

It is the Commission's policy to manage self-sustaining Class A wild trout populations as a renewable natural resource to conserve that resource and the angling it provides.  Criteria has been developed for Class A wild trout fisheries that are species specific.  The Notice outlines wild trout biomass classification criteria by species and the addition of new stream sections to the list of Class A wild trout streams which were considered during the Commission meeting on October 23, 2023. 



NOTICE - Classification of Wilderness Trout Streams; Proposed Additions; October 2023

The Commission maintains the wilderness trout streams program where stream remoteness and populations of naturally reproducing trout combine to offer sport fishing opportunities for anglers in a remote setting.  This Notice outlines the proposed addition of streams or portions of streams to the Commission's list of wilderness trout streams, which was considered during the Commission meeting on October 23, 2023.



BOATING - Final Rulemaking - Special Regulations Counties

48A-346

This rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations pertaining to Halfway Lake at R.B. Winter State Park, located in Union County.  This rulemaking was considered during the Commission meeting on October 23, 2023. The final rulemaking will go into effect upon publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.


BOATING - Final Rulemaking - Special Regulations Counties

48A-345

This rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations 
pertaining to Allegheny River Reservoir, also known as Kinzua Dam located in both McKean County and Warren County.   This proposed rulemaking was considered during the Commission meeting on October 23, 2023.  The final rulemaking will go into effect upon publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.



BOATING - Final Rulemaking - Boating Restrictions

48A-344

This rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations by
eliminating redundant regulations.  This rulemaking was considered during the Commission meeting on October 23, 2023.  The final rulemaking will go into effect upon publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.




NOTICE - Special Regulation Designations;  July 2023

The Commission has approved guidelines regarding encouraging public participation on possible changes to the designation of streams, stream sections or lakes for special regulation programs. Under 58 Pa. Code Chapter 65 (relating to special fishing regulations), the Commission designates or redesignates certain streams, stream sections and lakes as being subject to special fishing regulations.  The Notice proposing the removal of a water from its list of "big bass regulation" was approved during the Commission meeting on July  24, 2023. 


NOTICE - Proposed Changes to List of Class A Wild Trout Waters;  July 2023

It is the Commission's policy to manage self-sustaining Class A wild trout populations as a renewable natural resource to conserve that resource and the angling it provides.  Criteria has been developed for Class A wild trout fisheries that are species specific.  The Notice outlines wild trout biomass classification criteria by species and the addition of new stream sections to the list of Class A wild trout streams which was approved during the Commission meeting on July  24, 2023. 



NOTICE - Classification of Wilderness Trout Streams; Additions; July 2023

The Commission maintains the wilderness trout streams program where stream remoteness and populations of naturally reproducing trout combine to offer sport fishing opportunities for anglers in a remote setting.  This Notice outlines the proposed addition of streams or portions of streams to the Commission's list of wilderness trout streams, which was approved during the Commission meeting on July 24, 2023. 



 
 
NOTICE - Triploid Grass Carp Permit Application

The Commission may issue permits to stock triploid grass carp in Commonwealth waters.  Triploid grass carp are sterile fish that may, in appropriate circumstances, help control aquatic vegetation.  The Commission seeks public input with respect to any proposed stockings of triploid grass carp in waters having a surface area of more than 5 acres.



 
 

FISHING - Final Rulemaking - License, Permit, and Issuing Agent Fees

48A-343

This rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations pertaining to the fees of fishing licenses and permits.  A public hearing was held on April 24 at 11:30 AM.  The final rulemaking will go into effect on December 1, 2023.


 


BOATING - Rulemaking - Boat Registration and Numbering

48A-341

This rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations pertaining to registration and titling of boats.



NOTICE - Classification of Wilderness Trout Streams; Additions; April 2023

The Commission maintains the wilderness trout streams program where stream remoteness and populations of naturally reproducing trout combine to offer sport fishing opportunities for anglers in a remote setting.  This Notice outlines the addition of streams or portions of streams to the Commission's list of wilderness trout streams, which was considered and approved during the Commission meeting on April 24, 2023. 



BOATING - Rulemaking - Registration of Boats


48A-342
                                                                                                  

This rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations to simplify the boat registration process and provide better customer service.




 

NOTICE - Proposed Changes to List of Class A Wild Trout Waters;  April 2023


It is the Commission's policy to manage self-sustaining Class A wild trout populations as a renewable natural resource to conserve that resource and the angling it provides.  Criteria has been developed for Class A wild trout fisheries that are species specific.  The Notice outlines wild trout biomass classification criteria by species and the addition of new stream sections to the list of Class A wild trout streams which was approved during the Commission meeting on April 24, 2023. 



NOTICE - Classification of Wild Trout Streams; Proposed Additions; April 2023

The listing of a stream section as a wild trout stream is a biological designation that does not determine how it is managed.  The Commission relies upon many factors in determining the appropriate management of streams.  This Notice outlines the proposed addition of streams or portions of streams to the Commission's list of wild trout streams, which will be considered during the Commission meeting on April 24, 2023. 


NOTICE - Exemptions to Allow for the Continued Stocking of Class A Stream Sections

The Commission determines whether to allow trout stocking to continue on its Class A wild trout streams.    This Notice outlines the proposed exemptions which will be considered during the Commission meeting on January 23-24, 2023. 



FISHING - Final Rulemaking - Special Fishing Regulations - Sheppard-Meyers Reservoir



48A-340

This rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations to allow for the harvest of trout under Commonwealth inland water regulations, but allow only catch-and-release fishing for all other species within Sheppard-Meyers Reservoir.




NOTICE - Temporary Change to Fishing Regulations; Belmont Lake

The Commission has taken immediataction to modify
temporary fishing regulations at Belmont Lake. located
in Wayne County.  In anticipation of a partial drawdown of the lake, the Executive Director is lifting all seasons, sizes and creel limits for all species, effective October 29, 2022.



FISHING - Final Rulemaking - Propagation and Introduction of Fish into Commonwealth Waters



48A-325

This rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations pertaining to the introduction and transportation of fish into waters of the Commonwealth and creates new regulatory requirements for fish health certification and watercraft inspections.  All changes are outlined in the final rulemaking. 
 


FISHING - Final Rulemaking - Atlantic Striped Bass Fishing


48A-339

Thermometer - Comment Period

This rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations pertaining to Atlantic striped bass fishing in the Delaware River, West Branch Delaware River and River Estuary.



BOATING - Final Rulemaking - Treasure Lake, Clearfield County


48A-337

Thermometer - Comment Period

This rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations pertaining to the maximum boat length on Treasure Lake, located in Clearfield County.



BOATING - Final Rulemaking - Allowable Electric Motor Speeds & Horsepower Restrictions



48A-336

Thermometer - Comment Period

This rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations pertaining to allowable electric motor speeds and to clarify horsepower restrictions.  The amendments to Chapter 107 will limit the speed electric motors can be operated and will clarify that horsepower restrictions apply to internal combustion motors only.



FISHING - Final Rulemaking - Boat Title, License, and Permit Fees


48A-335

Thermometer - Comment Period

This rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations pertaining to the fees of boat titles, licenses, and permits.  A public hearing was held on Monday, July 25, 2022 at 6 PM.



FISHING - Final Rulemaking - Fishing License, Permit, and Boat Registration Fees



48A-334

Thermometer - Comment Period

This rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations pertaining to the fees of fishing licenses, permits and boat registrations as outlined in the rulemaking.  A public hearing was held on Monday, July 25, 2022 at 6 PM.



BOATING - Operator Provided Equipment -  Fire Extinguishers


48A-327

Thermometer - Comment Period

In October 2021, the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) published a final rulemaking amending the fire extinguishing equipment regulations for recreational vessels propelled or controlled by propulsion machinery.  This proposed rulemaking updates the Commission's regulations pertaining to fire extinguishers to ensure uniformity with the USCG's regulations. 



FISHING - Seasons, Sizes and Creel Limits -  American Shad


48A-326

Thermometer - Comment Period

Multiple state, federal, and tribal jurisdictions jointly manage American Shad fisheries along the Atlantic Coast, including the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) and the Delaware River Basin Fish and Wildlife Management Cooperative (Co-Op).  The Commission is a member of both entities.  Due to recent assessments the groups have identified unsustainable mortality within the Delaware River basin for the American Shad population.  The Commission is proposing to amend the daily creel limit for American Shad as outlined in this notice of proposed rulemaking.


 
SPECIAL FISHING REGULATIONS - Little Chartiers C
ek

48A-323

Thermometer - Comment Period

Little Chartiers Creek has been managed under miscellaneous special regulations since the early 1980s to prohibit angling from the end of the extended season for trout through 8 AM on the opening day of the regular season for trout.  Historically, this was done to manage unwanted angling that occurred due to stocked trout escaping from Canonsburg Lake and traveling downstream.  The Commission is proposing it be removed from the miscellaneous special regulations as outlined in the published Proposed Rulemaking.


 
SPECIAL FISHING REGULATIONS - Penns Creek

48A-324

Thermometer - Comment Period

In 2021, the Commission established a new special regulation program known as the trout slot limit.  Under this trout slot limit program, there are two subprograms: all-tackle trout slot limit and artificial lures only trout slot limit.  Given the success Penns Creek has had under the experimental slot limit regulation, the Commission is proposing it be removed from miscellaneous special regulations in favor of management under the newly established trout slot limit program, as outlined in the published Proposed Rulemaking. 



If you would like to submit a comment, please send an email to 
RA-pfbcregulations@pa.gov.