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Backcountry Hunters And Anglers Seeks More Local Buy-In After 'Quiet Waters' Initiative Fails

Kayaker on a lake
The "quiet waters" initiative would have restricted the use of motorized boats on some Montana waterways.

The group that proposed the quiet waters initiative says they plan to try again.

The group Backcountry Hunters and Anglers proposed the rule in May 2016 to reduce conflicts between motorized and non-motorized users. But on Friday The Montana Fish and Wildlife commission voted down their proposal that would have restricted the use of motorized boats on some Montana waterways.

Jeffery Luckas, the organizer for the Montana chapter of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, says the group hopes to meet with both motorized and non-motorized users to build support for a new set of rules.

"The idea is to get more buy-in from local user groups, rather than have a vast proposal that covers a bunch of the state," Luckas says.

Between November 2016 and February 2017 the Montana Fish and Wildlife Commission received more than 1000 public comments opposed to the original rule and just over 400 comments in support. Considering the widespread opposition, the commission voted unanimously against adopting the rule on Friday.

Editor's Note: This story was originally published with a different headline, we changed it to be more accurate. Backcountry Hunters and Anglers is still pursuing the goal of restricting motorized use on some Montana waterways, but in a different form from the "Quiet Waters Initiative".

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