Fisherynation Featured Writer Dick Drachek – CLF NMFS AND LAWSUITS

Conservation Law Foundation has been suing NOAA since 1991. In 2001 during a speech to an audience in Phoenix concerning the cost/benefit of litigation in fishery management, entitled Ten Years ‘After The Fall’: Litigation and Grou63338_485671558129923_2088140092_s dickygndfish Recovery in New England, Peter Shelley, senior attorney at CLF and a Pew Marine Fellow, refers to the National Marine Fisheries Service as “… A kind of bumbling adolescent” and CLF, the adult, had to step in with a lawsuit to straighten out and save the fishing industry and the agency from its adolescent ineptitudes.  This paternalistic role became the paradigm for the Conservation Law Foundation’s behavior toward the Fishing industry and The National Marine Fisheries Service, which is evident in CLF’s current legal machinations.

But it wasn’t just about groundfish it was more about CLF gaining a seat at the bargaining table in terms of fishery management, it was also about, in Shelley’s words “…our suit was the first suit that tried to look at the Magnuson-Stevens Act itself and determine which statutory requirements in the Act actually had teeth.” continued