WEEKLY UPDATE: 2/27/2017

NORTH CAROLINA FISHERIES ASSOCIATION
“Serving the Commercial Fishing Families of North Carolina since 1952”
Phone: (252) 633-NCFA (6232)
HAPPY NATIONAL PIG DAY!
Yes, March 1st is National Pig Day. If you are working today, you should complain. It’s a national holiday. (Or should be.)
LEGISLATIVE CONTACT INFORMATION:
We have been asked to provide contact information for North Carolina Senate and House members and will include that info after changes are made to reflect the new members in the General Assembly.
CARTERET COUNTY FISHERMAN’S ASSOCIATION PLANNING FISH FRY:
CCFA is looking for sponsors and memorials. They will be raffling a print from Core Sound Museum called “Core Sound by Firelight” by Alan Cheek. The date has not been finalized but it will be in May.
Makeup of the MFC’s Advisory Committees:
It has come to our attention that legislators have been getting information from individuals that state the opinion that the advisory committee members all have financial ties to commercial fishing. So, we did some checking and below is some information about the January meeting in New Bern when the 5 committees assembled to hear from the petitioners and then vote to make recommendations to the Marine Fisheries Commission.
After hours of presentations and public comment, all 5 advisory committees voted overwhelmingly to recommend to the MFC that they DENY the petition. The MFC met on February 15 & 16 and voted 5 to 3 with 1 abstention to ACCEPT the petition.
We encourage you to take a look at the information below. Please note the makeup of those committees and the votes. It’s quite informative.
For a pdf document of the information below, please email and we’ll send it.
MFC ADVISORY COMMITTEE MEETING on the SHRIMP PETITION FOR RULEMAKING
New Bern, NC; January 17, 2017
Northern: 11 total members with 10 at the meeting; voted 9 to 1 to deny
Southern: 10 total members with 7 at the meeting; voted 6 to 0 with one abstention to deny;
Finfish: 11 total members with 9 at the meeting; voted 7 to 1 to deny with the Chairman, a commercial, not voting
Habitat & Water Quality: 11 total members with 9 at the meeting; voted 7 to 1 to deny with the Chairman, a commercial, not voting
Shellfish/Crustacean: 11 total members with 9 at the meeting; voted 8 to 1 to deny
It should also be noted that of the 2 that did not vote, they were both affiliated with commercial interests, and the only scientist that voted FOR the petition was Mike Wicker who serves on the Commission!
OF THOSE ATTENDING THE MEETING:
Northern Committee had 2 recreational members; 1 biologist and 1 NC State University researcher, so4 of the 10 are NOT affiliated with commercial
Southern Committee had 4 recreational members and 1 UNC Wilmington researcher, so5 of the 7 are NOT affiliated with commercial
Finfish Committee had 2 recreational members; 2 biologists and 1 NC State University researcher, so5 of the 9 are NOT affiliated with commercial
Habitat & Water Quality: 11 total members with 9 at the meeting; voted 7 to 1 to deny with the Chairman, a commercial, not voting
Shellfish/Crustacean: 11 total members with 9 at the meeting; voted 8 to 1 to deny
It should also be noted that of the 2 that did not vote, they were both affiliated with commercial interests, and the only scientist that voted FOR the petition was Mike Wicker who serves on the Commission!
OF THOSE ATTENDING THE MEETING:
Northern Committee had 2 recreational members; 1 biologist and 1 NC State University researcher, so4 of the 10 are NOT affiliated with commercial
Southern Committee had 4 recreational members and 1 UNC Wilmington researcher, so5 of the 7 are NOT affiliated with commercial
Finfish Committee had 2 recreational members; 2 biologists and 1 NC State University researcher, so5 of the 9 are NOT affiliated with commercial
Habitat & Water Quality Committee had 2 environmentalists, 2 university researchers from ECU & UNC, 1 scientist from the National Marine Fisheries Service and 1 biologist, so6 of the 11 are NOT affiliated with commercial
Shellfish/Crustacean Committee has 2 recreational member, 1 environmentalist, 1 biologist, and the Chief Researcher and Director of the Center for Marine Science at UNC Wilmington; so5 or the 11 are NOT affiliated with commercial
BOTTOM LINE: Of the 44 advisory committee members at the meeting, 25 were NOT affiliated with commercial
Another interesting note: Of the 7 researchers present, 6 voted to deny the petition with only 1 voting to accept, and that was Mike Wicker who sits on the Marine Fisheries Commission!
SOUTH ATLANTIC COUNCIL TO MEET:
The Council will meet March 6 – 10 at the Westin in Jekyll Island, GA.
Issues on the agenda include:
Mackerel Cobia Committee:
Cobia – Update from the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission on development of an interstate fishery management plan for cobia and discussion about the 2017 recreational fishing season and closure.
Snapper Grouper Committee:
Red Snapper & Recreational Reporting – The Council will review public hearing comments for ideas for managing red snapper and approaches for reporting in the private recreational sector that are being proposed in Snapper Grouper Amendment 43.
Visioning Amendments – The Council will review public hearing comments for both recreational (Amendment 26) and commercial (Amendment 27) management measures in the snapper grouper fishery. Items being considered were identified as priority action items in the Council’s 2016-2020 Snapper Grouper Vision Blueprint.
For-hire Limited Entry:
The Council will review a white paper outlining approaches for developing a limited entry system affecting federal for-hire permits in the snapper grouper fishery.
 

Items scheduled for final approval by the Council:
Coastal Migratory Pelagics Amendment 29 – Gulf King Mackerel Allocations
Items scheduled for approval for scoping and/or public hearings:
Spiny Lobster Regulatory Amendment 4
CALENDAR
March 1; NATIONAL PIG DAY
March 6 – 10; SAFMC Meeting; Jekyll Island, GA
March 27; NCFA Board Meeting; Civic Center; Washington, NC
April 11 – 13; MAFMC Meeting; Avalon, NJ
April 17 – 18; Snapper Grouper AP Meeting; Charleston, SC
April 19 – 20; Mackerel Cobia AP Meeting; Charleston, SC
May 10; Joint MAFMC & ASMFC; Summer Flounder, Scup, Black Sea Bass Board; Alexandria, VA
May 17 – 18; NC MFC Meeting; New Bern, NC