POULSBO, Wash. (AP) - Nineteen Washington tribes are preparing for a courtroom battle over highway culverts that keep salmon from reaching their spawning grounds.
State and federal biologists agree that fixing culverts would be a major step toward salmon restoration. The state says more than 1,800 fish barriers on state highways block potential habitat. The Legislature has been paying for culvert replacement since 1991, but it could take 100 years to finish the work at the current pace.
The tribes say that is not acceptable and they've gone to federal court to prove it. The state already lost round 1 of the case.