National Fisherman


As most of the commercial and recreational anglers in Louisiana are well aware, the federal government is attempting to regulate how we fish in the Gulf.

The latest attempt is the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association limiting Louisiana's red snapper fishing season to 24 days.

To address this, I, along with Sen. David Vitter, recently introduced H.R. 1430, the Offshore Fairness Act of 2013.

This legislation will give states in the Gulf of Mexico and the south Atlantic the option to expand their offshore jurisdiction up to 10 miles off the coastline, thus giving them greater control over managing their own fisheries.

It will also expand the boundary of the submerged land of the Outer Continental Shelf to 10 miles.

Currently, most states have jurisdiction up to 3 miles off of their respective coasts.

This territorial extension will be available for the states of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia.

Texas and the eastern coast of Florida already have jurisdiction to manage fisheries up to 10 miles.

This bill gives all coastal states the same authority in managing their territorial waters.

Read the full story at Houma Today>>

Inside the Industry

The following was released by the Maine Department of Marine Resources on Jan. 22:

The Maine Department of Marine Resources announced an emergency regulation that will support the continued rebuilding effort in Maine’s scallop fishery. The rule, effective January 23, 2016, will close the Muscle Ridge Area near South Thomaston and the Western Penobscot Bay Area.

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Louisiana’s Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, which governs commercial and recreational fishing in the state, got a new boss in January. Charlie Melancon, a former member of the U.S. House of Representatives and state legislator, was appointed to the job by the state’s new governor, John Bel Edwards.

Although much of his non-political work in the past has centered on the state’s sugar cane industry, Melancon said he is confident that other experience, including working closely with fishermen when in Congress, has prepared him well for this new challenge.

Read more...
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