National Fisherman


CORTEZ -- It will be too late for long-defunct fish markets in Cortez, but a Leon County circuit judge's ruling could spell the beginning of the end for the ban on gillnet fishing in Florida's coastal waters.
 
In a sweeping judgment in favor of commercial mullet fishermen, Judge Jackie Fulford called contradictions between the ban approved by voters in 1994 and rules adopted by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission in 1997 to implement it a "legal absurdity," according to a report in the Tallahassee Democrat. She ordered a halt Tuesday to enforcement of Florida's constitutional amendment limiting net fishing in state coastal waters, according to the Democrat.
 
"The court is not saying that preserving our marine life is absurd. Instead the absurdity is created in the law and how it is being applied. It is abundantly unfair for the courts to continue to attempt enforcement of laws that contradict each other," the Democrat reported Fulford wrote in her 11-page ruling. "An absolute mess has been created."
 
Read the full story at Bradenton Herald>>

Inside the Industry

The American Fisheries Society is honoring recently retired Florida Institute of Oceanography director Bill Hogarth with the Carl R. Sullivan Fishery Conservation Award — one of the nation's premier awards in fisheries science - in recognition of his long career and leadership in preserving some of the world's most threatened species, advocating for environmental protections and leading Florida's scientific response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

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The Marine Stewardship Council has appointed Eric Critchlow as the new U.S. Program Director. Critchlow will be based in the MSC US headquarters in Seattle. He is a former vice president of Lusamerica Foods and has over 35 years in the seafood industry.

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