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Congressman Posey wrote me back.

FrisbeeFrisbee Posts: 2,314 Captain
It wasn't what I expected or wanted to hear:

March 29, 2012

334 1st Ave
Indialantic, FL 32903-4202


Thank you for contacting me to express your support for recreational fishing in Florida. I appreciate hearing from you.

I share your concern about the increasing regulation of recreational fishing in the state of Florida. I believe we should promote sustainable uses of public waters rather than choosing to lock them up with a policies based on flawed science. Representative John Mica and I recently sent a letter to Chairman Hastings and Ranking Member Markey of the House Committee on Natural Resources regarding the over-reaching nature of the Magnuson-Stevens Act and restrictions on fishing in Florida that are harmful to our fishing communities. Below is the text of the letter.

The Regional Marine Fishery Councils, under the jurisdiction of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), a division of the U.S. Department of Commerce, have imposed economically damaging and scientifically unjustified regulations on the fishing industry. Recent examples being the moratorium on Red Snapper fishing in the South Atlantic Marine Fishery and punitively low catch locations in the Northeast Ground Fishery. The councils and NOAA have plans to implement more harmful bans on additional species throughout U.S. fisheries. These actions have had a catastrophic impact on the fishing industry from Maine to Florida. Other fisheries across the nation as well are under similar assault by these councils.

Reauthorized during the 109th Congress, the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation Management Act of 2006 (P.L. 109-479) improperly addressed some of the issues facing the management of the fisheries. These well intended measures included, modifying the requirements for appointing and training members of regional councils; modifying research programs and improving data collection and management; establishing national guidelines for fishing quotas; and strengthening the role of science in fishery management decision making. Unfortunately, it seems that certain groups have "high-jacked" the guiding principles behind the management of the fisheries and these modifications have been used to stifle the voice of those who actually fish the waters, rather than get them more involved in the management of the fisheries. Also, the science used in the determination of stock assessments is widely regarded as flawed by both sides of the debate.

We respectfully request that the Committee on Natural Resources conduct a hearing on this important matter. We would like the Committee to examine the overreaching nature of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, and the unabridged authority it grants the local, yet federally appointed fishery councils to manage said fisheries.

Especially during this time of economic uncertainty and record unemployment, we must ensure that we do not further exacerbate the issue by constraining our nation's fishing communities. Re-examining the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation Management Act and the authority it grants to fishery councils will be the first step in reversing this unfortunate situation.

As a member of the Congressional Sportsmen's Caucus, the protection of anglers' rights is an issue I take seriously. Rest assured, as similar issues are considered in the House of Representatives, I will continue to be a strong advocate for the contributions hunters and anglers make to our society. I look forward to working with my colleagues to promote legislation which protects sporting rights.

Thank you again, LUKE, for contacting me. For more information on my work in Congress or to sign up to receive my E-newsletter, please visit my website, If I may be of service to you in the future, please do not hesitate to contact me.


Bill Posey
Member of Congress


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