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Martha's Vineyard Surfcasters
Martha's Vineyard
Surfcasters Association
P.O. Box 3053
Edgartown, MA 02539

Stripers Forever requesting legistative action in the next 8 days!!! (Stripers Forever Posting 1/22/13). We have an opportunity over the next 8 days. Please read more...

Jan 23

Written by:
1/23/2013 12:43 PM  RssIcon

From: stripers_ma@maillists.whatifnet.com
Reply-to: stripers@whatifnet.com
To: stripers_ma@lists.stripersforever.org
Sent: 1/22/2013 8:28:11 P.M. Eastern Standard Time
Subj: [Stripers_MA] From Stripers Forever's Lobbyist

 

Stripers Forever MA residents:

We have an opportunity over the next 8 days to significantly enhance the viability of our legislative package for this year.  If you care about the future of striped bass, now is the time to act!  Representatives and Senators of the Massachusetts Great and General Court have already filed the three bills that we've copied and pasted in below.  Our goal in the next 10 days is to get as many legislators as possible to sign on as co-sponsors of these bills.  The HD and SD designations stand for House Docket and Senate Docket.

 

HD 714 and SD1123,  An Act Relative to the Conservation of Atlantic Striped Bass The main thrust of this bill is to save fish by removing the recreational fishermen from the commercial striped bass fishery and reducing the quota correspondingly.  All fishermen who have not maintained an average of 1,000 pounds or more of reported landings over the last 5 years will not be issued commercial permits.  This will reduce the number of permit holders from about 4,000 to a little more than 200!  This reduction will have the added effect of cooling off the under-the-table, cash sale commercial fishery since, without a permit, people will not able to transport commercial quantities of striped bass so they can be sold.  It will also reduce the quota by a little over 300,000 pounds or nearly 30%.  The bill also prohibits any new entries into the fishery and ends the fishery completely in 2025.  As each license is retired the quota for that license will be removed from the total remaining quota.  The bill also provides for further conservation measures to be taken if the condition of the fishery continues to deteriorate.  

HD716 and SD1050, An Act Protecting the Legal Harvest of Striped Bass -

Beginning in 2014 the ASMFC is requiring all states including MA to adopt a tagging system in its commercial fishery.  MA is the only state no tagging system, and, against the advice of the ASMFC Law Enforcement Committee, MA officials have created a loophole,  whereby the fish can be tagged when they are sold and not at the point at which they are captured.  This bill requires that the commercially caught striped bass must tagged at the time they are caught.  

HD705 and SD1064, A Resolve studying the loss of revenues of the Commonwealth –

        This bill will command the MA department of revenue to study and analyze the well-documented drop in participation in the recreational striped bass fishery in MA, especially the 40% drop in out of state anglers, and how much that decline has cost the Commonwealth in lost         revenue.  The committee will then forward its findings to the Division of Marine Fisheries together with recommendations for enhancing the revenues derived from the recreational striped bass fishery

 

Here are my suggestions for approaching your legislators:  

 You should call or email your state representative or senator or indeed any legislator that you may have a relationship with.  You should ask them to sign on to the House and Senate dockets for each bill.  

Calling is better if you have the time. You will speak with an aide who will take your information and discuss it with the legislator. Please ask to receive an answer as to whether the Representative or Senator will co-sponsor.

You should call back or email back and ask what the decision was and if not a positive decision, then ask what is the reason for the decision.

Feedback to Stripers Forever is critical.  Send us an e-mail at stripers@whatifnet.com, and let us know how your communications turn out.  I will follow up with legislators who our members have contacted and work to secure their support.

 

Thank you for your help.  Henri Rauschenbach

 

P.S.  The actual language of each bill is available at this LINK.

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