HELENA (AP) – A series of public hearings will begin next week on a proposal to limit motorized watercraft use on nearly 50 western Montana river and stream segments.

The Independent Record reports that the proposal comes from the Backcountry Hunters and Anglers Quiet Waters initiative. The group cites advancements of motorized technology for bringing the initiative forward.

Under the proposal, there would be several seasonal and horsepower restrictions on motorized watercraft use as well as the closure of several small tributaries.

Some of the proposed changes would affect the Yellowstone, Flathead, Stillwater, Missouri and Whitefish rivers.

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks is gathering feedback on the group’s plan during six public meetings in January, with the first held Tuesday in Kalispell.

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