VERNAL — The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources has created an express pass program aimed at reducing the amount of time boaters spend with aquatic invasive species specialists before launching on the Utah side of Flaming Gorge Reservoir.

Due to the threat posed by quagga mussels, boaters must complete a decontamination certification form each time they visit a lake in Utah. Now, boaters at Flaming Gorge who have a program sticker will not need an inspection from a specialist. Instead, the specialist will verify the sticker, which is good for one calendar year, and let the launch proceed.

To participate, boaters must be a resident of Manila or Dutch John, or store the watercraft in a storage facility in one of the towns. Boaters must also complete a mussel awareness form; complete the Mussel Aware Boater Program Course form (available at stdofthesea.com); provide proof of residence (a utility bill, bank statement or payroll stub); and provide a receipt from the storage facility if storing a boat in either town.

The items above should then be submitted to an aquatic invasive species specialists who will award a program sticker. The sticker will be applied to the bow of the watercraft's starboard side.

The program is offered only on the Utah side of Flaming Gorge. Since Utah and Wyoming share the reservoir, boaters must obey each state's rules and regulations. When launching in Wyoming, boaters will still be required to stop for mandatory inspections.

Also, please be aware conservation officers perform random administrative checkpoints and mandatory inspection stations across Utah. All watercraft, including those participating in the local boater program, must stop for inspection.

For a complete list of rules or more information about the program, call 435-790-5357 or 801-995-2972.