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Thread: 75% of RS now privately owned

  1. #1
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    Default 75% of RS now privately owned

    On Thursday, the Gulf Council heard public comments on sector separation. The generals showed up for the battle but sadly, their armies stayed home. Many thanks to those few who did show up and speak on behalf of the private recreational fisherman but as I've said before, you get what you ask for and not enough people asked to keep their right to access the red snapper fishery. The people who wanted to have ownership of the fishery showed up in force at every public hearing. Not many private guys show up at any of the public comment meetings to ask to preserve their access so....Yesterday, the Gulf Council voted to increase private ownership of the Gulf of Mexico Red Snapper Fishery.

    I have no doubt that there will be lawsuits. Two of the voting council members who voted FOR sector separation, stand to personally benefit financially from the vote. One of them is Pam Dana who was appointed by Governor Scott. It will be interesting to see if Gov. Scott, who wrote a letter in opposition to sector separation, will allow Pam Dana to continue to serve as Florida's representative of recreational fishermen since she obviouusly voted to increase the profit of charter fishermen, including herself, over the right of access for millions of private recreational fishermen who live and pay taxes in our state.

    It is unconsionable that fewer than 1500 boats will control 75% of the entire red snapper fishery for the next 3 year and then, the fight will begin again.

    Sector Separation has made the private recreational fisherman with his/her own boat the loser since all the private recreational fishermen in FL, AL, MS, LA & TX combined will now be forced to share a paultry 1/4 of the total allowable catch of Red Snapper in Federal Waters.

    I will personally write a letter thanking the FWC for voting to preserve access for the millions of Floridians who are private recreational fishermen in our state. I hope you will do the same. Commissioners@myfwc.com
    Candy
    President, ECRA
    Reef Deployment Director

  2. #2
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    Here is a message from Capt. Bob Zales who spoke against sector separation:


    As all know by now amendment 40 was passed and moved to the soc for approval. In order to pass a provision was added to sunset amend 40 after 3 years. This means that amend 40 will cease after 3 years unless a process to extend it is initiated. It does not automatically renew. In addition, there are some associations considering a lawsuit on the issue which we will find out more in the coming weeks.

    After amend 40 was approved a motion was made by Dale Diaz (MS)to change the name of the current ad hoc red snapper ifq panel to the AD HOC CHARTER FOR HIRE AP. The motion also moved to change the charge of the ap from strictly developing an ifq program for charter boats to considering any management option for charter boats. A substitute motion was made Johnny Green (AL) to completely disband the membership of the ad hoc red snapper ifq ap and to advertise for new applicants, meaning those currently selected may or may not be selected again. You can form your own opinion as to why he wanted a change. The substitute motion failed and the original motion passed. The new name for the ap is the AD HOC CHARTER FOR HIRE AP and the new charge for the ap is to consider different management options for the charter for hire vessels.

    The council members voting for amend 40 are listed below. You see that the 3 Florida appointed members all voted for the issue. The FWC stood their ground and voted against the issue. Although a 10-7 vote wins it is clearly not a convincing vote. The members voting against the issue can provide a minority opinion so we will see if they do. There was lots of back room politicking so you can only assume what behind the scenes deals were made.

    These people voted for:
    Green (AL) x
    Walker (AL) x
    Perret (MS) x
    Pearce (LA) x
    Bosarge (MS) x
    Anson (AL) x
    Williams (FL) x
    Sanchez (FL) x
    Dana (FL) x
    Crabtree* (NMFS) x
    • Over the course of this issue you heard Dr. Crabtree state over and over he had no dog in this hunt and it did not matter one way or the other to him. It was pointed out in public testimony by some that in previous votes on allocation issues the nmfs abstained.

    Voted against:
    Bademan (FL)
    Diaz (MS)
    Fisher (LA)
    Matens (LA)
    Riechers (TX)
    Boyd (TX)
    Stunz (TX)

    Capt. Bob Zales, II
    Candy
    President, ECRA
    Reef Deployment Director

  3. #3
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    Below is the letter I sent thanking the FWC for standing up for recreational fishermen, I hope you will thank them too. Here is the address: commissioners@myfwc.com


    From: Candy Hansard [mailto:candy@valp.net]
    Sent: Friday, October 24, 2014 8:54 PM
    To: 'commissioners@myfwc.com'
    Cc: 'ullery.melissa@flsenate.gov'; Matt Gaetz; 'jackie.fauls@myfwc.com'
    Subject: Thank You FWC Commissioners!

    Dear Commissioners,

    I would like to express my appreciation for your letter to the Gulf Council opposing Sector Separation. Although the vote favored the charter fishermen over the millions of Florida’s private recreational fishermen, it was nice to see that our State Fish and Wildlife agency appreciated the importance of preserving access to the stakeholders who pay the lion’s share of fishery management expenses both in our state and federal waters.

    Considering the fact that approximately 75% of the Federal Red Snapper Fishery in the Gulf of Mexico will now be privatized, it is my hope that our State will protect the private recreational fisherman by going non-compliant with Federal Red Snapper fishing regulations offering fishing opportunities to the millions of people who live and pay taxes in our state.

    It is also my hope that our State will discontinue funding reef building in Federal Waters that our State does not control.

    Again, I thank you all for standing up for the citizens and taxpayers in our State.

    Sincerely,

    Candy Hansard
    Candy
    President, ECRA
    Reef Deployment Director

  4. #4
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    Default Congressional Caucus Poll on Sector Separation

    The Congressional Sportsmens Caucus wants your opinion on this ONE question poll. The poll question is on the right side fo the page and below are the answers you have to chose from. I am from a Gulf Coast State and do not support Sector Separation so I chose the second answer. Please go to the link below and take the poll. Whatever your thoughts, this is your chance to tell Congress what you think of Sector Separation. The Gulf Council has voted but Congress may be interested in reviewing the Magnuson Stevens Act. Sector Separation may get some Congressional scrutiny depending on the response to this one question poll.

    Go here to take the poll:http://www.sportsmenslink.org/caucuses/congressional

    Your opinion counts

    Despite healthy fish populations, 2014 had the shortest Gulf of Mexico red snapper recreational fishing season in history. The Gulf of Mexico Fisheries Management Council is currently considering a proposal to split the recreational sector between charter (for-hire) and private recreational anglers as a solution. Please select where you fall under this issue:


    I live in a Gulf state and support this proposal

    I live in a Gulf state and do not support this proposal

    I do not live in a Gulf state, but support this proposal

    I do not live in a Gulf state and do not support this proposal

    I am unfamiliar with this issue, or have no opinion of the proposal
    or View Results
    - See more at: http://www.sportsmenslink.org/caucus....0xG5bRou.dpuf
    Candy
    President, ECRA
    Reef Deployment Director

  5. Default

    done. 81% responded #2 so far.
    -Mark

  6. #6
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    Here is another poll you should take.
    If you fish and you vote, let legislators know that!

    Go here: http://thefra.org/ifishivote
    Candy
    President, ECRA
    Reef Deployment Director

  7. #7
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    Attached is a letter by Senator Vitter to the Secretary of the Department of Commerce regarding Sector Separation. Private Recreational fishermen's access may be saved by congress! Read the letter, this matter isn't over yet!
    Attached Files Attached Files
    Candy
    President, ECRA
    Reef Deployment Director

  8. #8
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    Below are links to two blog posts on the U.S. Senate website that are also very interesting.

    http://www.epw.senate.gov/public/ind...5-4B349E5A0D7E

    http://www.epw.senate.gov/public/ind...1-394288365440
    Candy
    President, ECRA
    Reef Deployment Director

  9. #9
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    The link below is to the Minority report from the Gulf Council members who voted against Sector Separation (Amendment 40) This report contained the letter printed below. The letter from Chris Blankenship, Alabama's Marine Resource Division Director, is quite interesting.

    I highly recommend you read the report! Sector Separation may not be a done deal!

    http://s3.amazonaws.com/assets.clien...pdf?1418842935

    Attachment 1 – This was reported as a response from Mr. Chris Blankenship to an email by a poster on the
    message board, The Hull Truth on October 24th.
    Mark,
    Amendment 40 (Sector Separation) was approved by the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council on
    October 23, 2014. In conversations with members and judging from procedural votes it was clear that the votes
    on this issue were 8 for passage and 8 against with NOAA Fisheries Regional Administrator Roy Crabtree
    being the deciding vote. All five State Fishery representatives were united in opposition to Amendment 40.
    Feeling that the amendment would pass, the goal of the states was to implement a sunset provision to give us
    time to work out regional management. Crabtree indicated that he was voting for passage but that if one state
    would change their vote the he would break from the block of Council members that were voting together
    railroading implementation of Sector Separation to vote for the sunset provision. In order to secure the sunset
    provision we reluctantly agreed to support Amendment 40 resulting in a 10-7 vote with the three year sunset
    provision included. The options for the states were to either watch this amendment pass with no sunset and have
    to live with the separated sector forever, like we are doing now with the commercial fishery, or work out a
    compromise to place a sunset provision to give us the opportunity to implement regional management for all
    recreational sectors in the future. The State of Alabama feels that the best option to repair this broken federal
    management system is for the states to have regional control of the fishery in waters adjacent to their state, both
    in state and federal waters, for both charter and private recreational fishermen.
    Like all the issues concerning red snapper and the federal government, there are no easy solutions. The State of
    Alabama, through the Marine Resources Division will continue to work diligently to fix this broken system. The
    Red Snapper Reporting System worked very well last year. We are in deep negotiations with NOAA Fisheries to
    use this data to improve and calibrate their data collection system. Alabama spearheaded an effort at this
    meeting to have the Science and Statistical Committee provide quota recommendations using a less
    conservative analysis of spawning potential ratio since this fishery is rebuilding faster than they projected. This
    will allow us to catch more pounds now, while still meeting the goals to rebuild by 2032. We continue with our
    fishery independent research work in our artificial reef zones that we feel will be instrumental in the new stock
    assessment. Now that Amendment 40 has passed, Amendment 28 concerning reallocation of portions of the
    quota from the commercial sector to the recreational sector is back on the table for discussion and action. All of
    these items will increase the amount of pounds available for the private recreational fishermen and hopefully
    get us a longer season while we work to make real changes through regional management and through changes
    to the Magnusson-Stevens Act in Congress in 2015.
    Chris Blankenship, Director
    Alabama Marine Resources Division
    Dauphin Island Office 251-861-2882
    Gulf Shores Office 251-968-7576
    Chris.blankenship@dcnr.alabama.gov
    Candy
    President, ECRA
    Reef Deployment Director

  10. #10
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    Members, we often write letters when we are upset with the action of our regulators but fail to show our appreciation when they do things right. Below is my personal letter to FWC Commissioner Nick Wiley and Martha Bademan who sits as a voting member of the Gulf Council.

    I hope that you will take 2 minutes to send them a note of appreciation for their efforts to protect your right of access to the federal red snapper fishery.

    To: Commissioners@myfwc.com Martha.Bademan@myfwc.com

    December 18. 2014

    Dear FWC Commissioner Nick Wiley and Martha Bademan,

    I just read the very well written Minority Report submitted to the Secretary of Commerce regarding Amendment 40, Sector Separation.

    Please accept my sincere appreciation for your continued opposition to this outrageous attempt to deny the majority of recreational fishermen access to the Red Snapper Fishery in federal waters. It is my hope that the States will soon control not only the Red Snapper Fishery in federal waters but also strive to wrest control of all fishery management away from an irretrievably broken federal management system.

    For the Gulf Council to pass Sector Separation without support of the majority of Gulf States was unconscionable. As the representative of our fine State, your vote represented over a million licensed private recreational fishermen and possibly a million unlicensed senior citizens and children.

    For the stakeholders represented by their respective states to be ignored in the process was shocking.

    Martha, I would again like to express my gratitude for your vote protecting the largest segment of stakeholders in Florida, the private recreational fishermen and women. Commissioner Wiley, thank you for your support of your stakeholders.

    With Sincere Appreciation,

    Candy Hansard
    Candy
    President, ECRA
    Reef Deployment Director

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