a long, strange trip it’s been. Keeping in mind that
the cost of freedom is eternal vigilance, we should all
pause to ponder and absorb that our actions DO make a
difference. Don’t let your guard down, but you
certainly should enjoy the good feeling you get from
these two pivotal events.
South Atlantic Red
Snapper opening this year!
Sector Separation tabled
by Gulf Council
TIME in the South Atlantic!!!!
just in. Even though it is extremely limited, this is
great news. Special thanks to all who worked so hard to
get the attention needed to make this happen!
Today, NOAA Fisheries filed a temporary rule with the
Federal Register to to establish management measures to
allow for the limited harvest and possession of red
snapper in the South Atlantic in 2012, as requested by
the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council. The
temporary ruled that filed today, and will publish
tomorrow, August 28th, provides for the following:
The recreational fishing season will open for two
consecutive weekends made up of Fridays, Saturdays, and
Sundays. The season will open on September 14, 2012, and
close on September 17, 2012; then reopens on September
21, 2012, and closes on September 24, 2012. During the
open recreational season, the bag limit is one fish per
person per day and there is no minimum size limit for
The commercial red snapper season opens on September 17,
2012, and closes on September 24, 2012. During the open
commercial season, the daily trip limit is 50 pounds
gutted weight and there is no minimum size limit for red
I've attached a copy of the
as well as a copy of the
that will be sent out later today. Please let me know if
you have any questions or need any additional
Congressional Affairs Specialist
Office of Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
U.S. Department of Commerce
RECREATIONAL FISHING DAYS
Bag limit one per angler per day, no minimum size
Commercial fishing days
Sept 17 – 23
Daily limit 50 pounds gutted. No minimum size limit.
NOTE: NOAA cites closing
dates at 12:01 AM of the date. Above dates reflect
actual days of fishing.
MOVEMENT HITS A WALL
Gulf Council tables
Sector Separation and further expansion of catch shares
at the conclusion of its August meeting.
Nearly six years ago, a movement began in earnest to
enslave the recreational fishery with catch shares.
first attempt was boldly titled “Ad hoc recreational red
snapper IFQ advisory panel” by the Gulf Council. Kind
of a self fulfilling prophecy, don’t you think? They
changed the title of the panel and ultimately disbanded
it after the FRA asked the hard questions at every step.
Not to be defeated by fact, logic, common sense and
public opinion, the Gulf Council then created new
advisory panels, padded with catch share advocates, in a
further attempt to inject catch shares across all
fisheries, commercial and recreational.
Throughout the long battle, Environmental Defense Fund
and its ‘enviro’ allies spent over $35 million dollars
trying to foist this resource theft upon the
recreational fisheries. Wal Mart’s founding family got
dragged into the fray. The players are huge investors
and eniro-activists united by a driving force, a common
factor: MONEY. The FRA has fought this movement every
step of the way, with very little money. While it
is far from over, there is hope that the forces of evil
will be kept in check by the actions of good people.
persistence and perseverance have paid off. Thanks to
the FRA-driven core group of contributors, the whole
evil plan has been exposed. Everyone now knows NOT to
drink the yellow kool aide. The FRA heavy hitters have
been deep in this fight since the first advisory panel
meeting. There have also been some VERY surprising
contributions of effort from certain individuals who
have nothing to do with the recreational fishery.
Then, there is Congress. We must all pay attention to
what happened in Congress to bring our situation to
light and warrant congressional action. It was every
one of YOU who called, emailed, turned out for public
input, travelled to Washington and otherwise made your
voice heard. Congress listened and took up our cause.
There is much more to come from Congress. The fireworks
over the Gulf Council’s mismanagement are expected to be
bold and beautiful (and somewhat satisfying to those who
lit the fuse).
We must focus on the
current action of the Gulf Council. The FRA is pleased
that the Council finally exercised the will of the
people and followed Magnuson Stevens. Last Thursday,
the Gulf Council voted 11-5 to table Sector Separation
and further catch share programs, effectively
eliminating further action on these two intertwined
issues for at least a year. We would like to see
the idea moved to 'considered but discarded'.
have stopped the madness for now. Where will the next
assault on your fishing rights come from? What can we
do to avert the next assault? Both good questions.
need to look at the overall problem and where the cause
of the problem lies. Simply put, the NMFS/NOAA machine
has been allowed to ignore Congress when it comes to
improving recreational data. NOAA head Jane Lubchenco
has openly defied Congress. Here agency has failed to
follow the recreational data blueprint laid out for it
by the National Research Council not once, but twice in
the past twelve years.
must focus on this critical failure, as every
recreational angler is affected by the purposefully
flawed data submitted. Further, NOAA is allowed to
multiply their own mistakes through the application of
two ‘levels of uncertainty’. And we all know that Roy
Crabtree and NMFS will ALWAYS manage to the lowest level
of uncertainty. This type of blackmail and punitive
behavior needs to be stopped. We need fisheries
managers that are fair. We pay for and deserve sound
science and reasonable management measures for our
NOAA/NMFS has slipped a noose around the neck of every
recreational angler and every commercial fisherman. Any
resistance to NOAA/NMFS causes the hangman to grab the
pins and threaten to pull them. The time has come to
cast off the noose and take the hangman to task.
Congress writes the checks. Congress listens. Congress
can fire Jane Lubchenco and her minions. Now is the
time for some REAL change.
Representative Steve Sutherland of Florida deserves our
deepest gratitude. He has taken our cause to heart and
is now being subjected to bullying by way of the Ocean
Conservancy and others attempting to sway voters against
Steve. What lows will the enviro groups go to for
vengeance? If the enviros influence Steve’s
re-election, it would send a message to other
legislators. Much like when the EDF and others came to
steal our fishery, we must stand together in support of
Steve Sutherland. Send him a few bucks and a hearty
thank you. Then contact EVERYONE you know in Steve’s
district and URGE them to support and vote for Steve.
We must not let our champions go unprotected!
special thanks to Florida Representative Gus Bilirakis
for his support of the angler’s right to fish.
What can you do?
an email (and a donation) to
an Email to Gus
Write an email to Gulf Council –
Thank you for listening and for your recent action on
Send an email to your legislators.
Legislator links and phone numbers
you live in Clearwater, you should send the City Council
an email updating them on the sector separation issue.