Gulf Red Snapper Recreational Fishing Workshops will be held this month
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission wants to hear from you!
They are asking how to better manage the recreational fishery. Some of the topics will include Sector Separation, Individual Fishing Quota’s, and Regional Management.
Public Hearing Locations
All hearings will start at 6pm
July 28: Pensacola, Pensacola City Hall (2nd-floor Hagler Mason room), 222 W. Main St.
July 29: Destin, Destin Community Center, 101 Stahlman Ave.
July 30: Panama City, Florida State University – Panama City, lecture hall of Holley Center, 4750 Collegiate Drive
July 31: Carrabelle, Carrabelle City Hall cafeteria, 1001 Gray Ave.
Aug. 11: St. Petersburg, Fish and Wildlife Research Institute, 3rd-floor conference room, 100 Eighth Ave. SE.
CCA believes sector separation is simply a continuation of policies that address the symptoms of failed management without offering solutions that work for all components of the fishery. By creating an entirely new sector using only suspect past catch history, federal managers are just repeating the mistakes of the past and catering to the least economically beneficial aspects of the fishery. Under the current proposal, specific charter/for-hire operators could receive 54% of the recreational Red Snapper quota, while private anglers will likely not have a federal season at all as soon as next year.
Individual fishing quota’s (IFQ’s) give a public resource to an individual business to use as its own. IFQs will further privatize the red snapper fishery, 51 percent of which is already held privately by commercial harvesters. IFQs are expressly designed to reduce capacity. Once implemented, it is inevitable that the charter/for-hire industry will begin radical consolidation, further reducing access to this public resource. IFQs are a commercial management tool that has no business in a mixed-use fishery. Should a fundamentally flawed federal management system be allowed to privatize public resources that benefit some user groups and penalize others?
Regional Management is an option that would allow the states to tailor the management of marine resources like red snapper beyond state waters. Unlike the federal system, the states have shown a superior ability to manage wildlife resources for the greatest benefit of their citizens and have shown a much greater understanding of recreational fisheries. Regional management would allow each state to determine how best to manage its natural resources using the tools that have worked so well for species such as red drum, speckled trout, and snook.
Coastal Conservation Association Florida
Dedicated to Conserving and Protecting Florida’s Marine Resources
P.O. Box 568886, Orlando, Florida 32856-8886 (407) 854-7002 Fax (407) 854-1766