I posted this earlier today on the Federation site when a member told me he had an 'MDNR' person at the Detroit show say it was still illegal even if he used a lure on the bottom (which we were told the opposite on at a state federation meeting):
"This is just a typical example of the inconsistency of communication, interpretation and enforcement from Lansing out into the field.
It's been going on for years. A big part of why I always try to get policy-like decisions - to try and avoid this confusion.
We were told at the State level (Lansing) that since a lure is NOT a weight, using a lure below a hook does not meet the description of the regulation (a weight) and therefore is not illegal.
Of course, they wouldn't give a written decision, so it is possible, but unlikely, that you would get a ticket anyway. Just don't attempt to snag fish of any kind (don't make snagging motions), and be friendly and patient with any CO's who check you. You should be okay.
Check this link out for the Fisheries Orders language: http://www.michigan.gov/documents/Fisherie...ictionsFishing2
I haven't wrote off this issue yet. I eventually plan on meeting with someone in Lansing and showing them various riggings to get a firmer decision, IF they will do so. The Law Chief told me the MDNR still considers snagging a significant problem and they would be unwilling to do away with regulations that help them enforce this. From the snagging enforcement regulations: "This order is assigned number FO-218.02 and is titled "Gear Restrictions for Fishing".
This order shall take effect on April 1, 2002, and shall remain effective through March 31, 2007." so we are stuck with this reg as is until March 2007. Maybe we can work out an official clarification.
The intent is to stop snagging and "to allow the baited hook or the lure to suspend freely in the water, allowing the fish to take the hook or lure in its mouth" which is the same thing all good bassers want too. I'll work on the bass season first and this later."