The insanity of managing and regulating recreational fishermen’s catch by pounds has to stop.
In our new Magnuson reform bill we have language that allows for alternative management. In the past, when recreational anglers were asked to cut back, the fisheries service increased the size of the fish by inches which increased the amount of pounds of fish being caught. And then the following year, since more pounds are caught they will continue again to add increased size limits which in essence increases the amount of pounds harvested. You can see that this method is absolute insanity.
One terrible aspect of the way the Magnuson management treaty is written is that with increased size limits for recreational anglers, more and more fishing pressure is added to attain the size limit and quota making many more fish released and harmed in the process. Another terrifying aspect of concurrent fisheries management is that the larger the fish get, the more and more female gender fish are taken. Obviously females are the producers of more stock.
In an extremely bold move last week, President Trump and Secretary Ross went against the findings of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission to keep the summer flounder (fluke) from going to a 19 inch size limit with a 3 fish per person quota. The size limit remains at 18 inches. The great state of New York not wanting to fight the battle, went along with the recommendations of the Fisheries Council and now is on their way to more and more charter boats going out of business and being susceptible to one day losing the fishery altogether.
This bill named Modernizing Recreational Fisheries Management Act of 2017 (H.R. 2023) has vast support from all recreational salt water anglers in the United States. This entire bill process is brought to congress by Garret Graves of Louisiana.
Although healthcare and taxes, immigration policy and security are and should be at the forefront for every United States citizen, let’s make no mistake people, the world is 75 percent water and in addition to that fact, recreational fishing is about a $30 billion industry in the United States. $30 billion gets a lot of congressman and legislators bought off. Oh everyone, please excuse me I didn’t mean bought off, I meant elected. What a terrible mistake. Our Congress and Senate are moving way, way to slow on modernizing the Magnuson-Stevens Act which basically manages recreational fishing in the United States today.
If you own a boat, if you fish, if you go to a tackle shop, if you have ever gone into a West Marine or if you ever happen to eat fish you are well aware that the ocean and our industry transcends all of our lives daily, in one way or the other. Under the Obama legislation, the answer for all problems was smoke and mirrors, nepotism and kicking the can down the road. Now we finally have a president, which I not only adore and voted for, but a Republican Congress and Senate and they will not listen to Captain Tred Barta or the RFA (Recreational Fishing Alliance) who is the right-saber arm of the recreational fisherman.
I can whine, I can cry, and I can be sarcastic or I can just stand up and tell you the facts. For anyone who doesn’t understand the Magnuson-Stevens Act, in one of my last articles at Newsmax, I truly defined what it is and how it came about. I again implore Secretary of Commerce Ross, Secretary of the Interior Zinke, and President Trump, ruler of the Free World to send Tred Barta to Washington and explain what an injustice is taking place towards the American fishing public.
If I could explain how our fisheries management system is so badly broken, logic would prevail immediately.
I am not running for office, I am not seeking any financial remuneration. Get me on Fox News and I can do all of this in a very short period of time.