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Call to   Action

   

Gulf red snapper crisis opens door to misguided management schemes

   

   
         In the chaos surrounding the 2013 recreational red snapper season, it is possible that the 27-day season will be used as an excuse to propose more unfair management schemes such as catch shares and sector separation for charter/for-hire boats.
   
        CCA’s calls to reallocate red snapper as a means to provide relief to the recreational sector as a whole continue to be ignored. An army of environmental and commercial lobbyists continue to seek ways to limit recreational access to this public resource. A few hundred commercial boats continue to profit from 51 percent of all Gulf red snapper. Hundreds of thousands of recreational anglers continue to get the remaining 49 percent over a 27-day season with an allocation that was set back in the 1980s. This is crazy.
   
        Instead of seriously looking at reallocation, federal bureaucrats have chosen to promote things like a one-snapper bag limit. They fought hard to get the power to punish specific Gulf states that choose to reject the futility of federal red snapper regulations. This new federal power now means anglers in some states may face a red snapper season of as few as 11 days.
   
        We fully expect that against this backdrop of failure, renewed efforts will be made to promote things like catch shares to further limit recreational participation and give a portion of the meager recreational catch to specific charter/for hire businesses to use as their own. While hundreds of thousands of recreational anglers in private boats are left with virtually nothing, a select few businesses and their allies in the environmental community will try to escape with a gift of red snapper from the federal government.
   
        We’ve been told that federal fisheries managers and Council members don’t hear from recreational anglers enough. We’ve been told that the cadre of charter captains, environmental lobbyists and commercial snapper barons who attend every Council meeting are carrying the day and drowning out the concerns of several hundred thousand unsatisfied recreational anglers.
   
        There has never been a more critical time for anglers to make their voices heard in federal fisheries management. Take a few moments now to click the link below and contact your Council members and Council staff personally. Ask them to focus on the core issues that can benefit ourcommunity. Ask them to reject sector separation, catch shares and any other scheme to minimize recreational access to our marine resources. Demand that federal managers finally address reallocation. If possible, make plans to come to the next Gulf Council meeting, April 15-18, at the Marriott Courtyard at 1600 E. Beach Blvd. in Gulfport, Mississippi, and talk to them in person.
   
       Red snapper is no longer a conservation issue – it’s a management issue, and federal management is failing. Send a message today, before we find ourselves permanently locked out of the process..
   
    GULF OF MEXICO FISHERY MANAGEMENT COUNCIL
   
    TEXAS
    Doug Boyd
    Patrick Riley
    Robin Riechers
   
    LOUISIANA
    Camp Matens
    Harlan Pearce
    Myron Fischer
   
    MISSISSIPPI
    Kay Williams
    Corky Perret
    Dale Diaz
   
    ALABAMA
    Dr. Bob Shipp
    Johnny Greene
    Kevin Anson
   
    FLORIDA
    Pam Dana
    John Sanchez
    Larry Abele
    Martha Bademan
   
    NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE
    Roy Crabtree
   
    Click the link below to log in and send your message:
    www.votervoice.net