The N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries continues to operate on a budget raided by the state legislature of $600,000 six months after Gov. Pat McCrory signed into law a Joint Enforcement Agreement that would earn the state’s saltwater management agency that amount in federal assistance.
The JEA has languished through the terms of office of two leaders of the N.C. Department of Environmental and Natural Resources, John Skvarla and now Donald R. van der Vaart.
When McCrory signed the 2014 budget act last Aug. 7, he approved a section that empowers the director of the NCDMF, Dr. Louis Daniel, to enter into a JEA with the National Marine Fisheries Service that would allow N.C. Marine Patrol officers to enforce federal fishing regulations beyond the state’s 3-mile offshore limit. But Daniel is still waiting for approval from van der Vaart, who hasn’t received a go-ahead from McCrory, who also failed to give Skvarla, who left the office on Dec. 2, instructions to go forward.
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