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Southerland Introduces "Gulf Fisheries Fairness Act"

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Steve Southerland, II joined colleague Rep. Jo Bonner (R-AL) in introducing legislation to extend state water boundaries for Florida and the Gulf Coast region, providing exclusive management of reef fish to Gulf States struggling with shrinking access to an already restricted fishery.

“With a two-fish-per-day limit and a red snapper season set at 27 days and shrinking, Florida’s fishermen face unacceptably severe challenges that are forcing them off the water,” Southerland said. “Our legislation – the Gulf Fisheries Fairness Act – casts a life preserver to fishermen and coastal economies struggling to stay afloat amid crippling federal regulations that fail to reflect the successes of a fishery built upon the sacrifices of the Gulf’s commercial and recreational fishermen. Our legislation stands tall on the 10th Amendment, fighting back against the ever-tightening grip of Washington overregulation.”

The Gulf Fisheries Fairness Act resets state water boundaries for reef fish management in the Gulf to a depth of 20 fathoms (120 feet) or nine nautical miles, which could reach offshore as many as 60 miles. Florida’s current boundary is set at nine miles.


  • Master BlasterMaster Blaster Posts: 381 Deckhand
    Great news....hopefully it will pass!!
  • stingwraystingwray On the creek Ga, Beach house FL.Posts: 801 Officer
    The state of FL is going in the right direction for the red snapper IMO. Looks like FL will now only get a 21 day season due to not following the Fed season of 27 days. But they might have a 44 day state water season, final vote not in yet. I think that losing 6 days in fed waters but gaining 17 days in state water is a win for FL. If my math adds up gaining 17 days of red snapper fishing will bring more revenue to the state of Fl. which in turn will boost their economy. Again JMO as i have said before the real #'s of red snapper will have to come out soon.
  • BeckBeck Posts: 2,332 Captain
    I've been following this.....would love to see it pass
  • Snapper SlapperSnapper Slapper Posts: 121 Deckhand
    As an out-of-stater that has been coming to PC for 15 years to fish, I can tell you that the regulation changes over the years have kept us from spending a lot of money in the state of Fla. There was a time when we would make 4-6 trips a summer knowing that all we needed was one decent day each trip to make it worth our while. As the limits dropped and the season dwindled so did our trips. I have never been accused of being a smart man, but I would have to imagine that there are a ton of people out there just like us. I am glad to see the people of Fla are finally (albeit just a beginning) having their voices heard and I agree that extended state season is well worth giving up a week of federal waters.
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