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Press Releases

Federal management of Gulf red snapper grinds to historic low

Broken system produces 11-day season for recreational anglers

BATON ROUGE, LOUISIANA (4-11-2014) – The impact of a recent federal district court ruling in favor of commercial red snapper fishermen and seafood packers was driven home this week as the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council set the 2014 recreational red snapper season at just 11 days, the shortest season in the fishery’s history under management. The judge’s ruling was an indictment of federal data collection and management systems, but it will be recreational anglers who ultimately pay the price.


“This is what happens when common sense leaves the building and you blindly insist on managing recreational angling with the same system you designed exclusively to manage a few industrial fishing operations,” said Mark Ray, a vice chairman for Coastal Conservation Association which intervened in the lawsuit on behalf of recreational anglers’ interests. “Now the whole complex system is being mercilessly manipulated by the commercial industry and environmental groups to restrict access to these resources to fewer and fewer people. This is rock bottom – the fishery itself is in wonderful shape and anglers have an 11-day season in federal waters.”

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Ruling against recreational angling confirms federal fisheries management system broken

HOUSTON, TX (3-27-2014) – In a case brought by commercial fishermen, seafood processors and trade groups closely associated with the Environmental Defense Fund, a federal district judge acknowledged this week that federal management of recreational anglers is deeply flawed and in need of overhaul. The lawsuit essentially challenged the National Marine Fisheries Service’s policy of setting hard quotas for the recreational sector without timely or reliable means to manage to such a standard.

“The judge ruled the only way she could given the realities of the federal fishery management system,” said Bill Bird, vice chairman of the National Government Relations Committee for the Coastal Conservation Association, which intervened on behalf of the interests of recreational anglers. “Under federal management, the rules of this fishery are designed exclusively to manage a few, elite commercial businesses seeking to profit from the sale of a public resource. While the plaintiffs simply intended this case to result in severe curtailment of the recreational sector, this decision also makes it abundantly clear that recreational anglers are at a dead end under federal management unless a solution can be found to suit their needs.”

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CCA DAY ON THE HILL

Coastal Conservation Association of Florida (CCA) will host its inaugural Day on the Hill at the Capitol building courtyard during Florida’s Legislative Session on March 20, 2014. CCA Florida is a statewide, non‐profit marine organization working to protect the state's marine resources and the interests of saltwater anglers. Comprised of 31 local chapters from Pensacola to the Keys, we support strong, resource‐based law enforcement, access to the resource for recreational fishing, and strong, fairly‐balanced regulations to protect state and federal fish stocks. CCA Florida is part of the Coastal Conservation Association a National organization with 100,000 members.

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