RFA Encourages Angler Response on Red Snapper Allocation
The Recreational Fishing Alliance (RFA) is urging saltwater anglers from throughout the Gulf of Mexico to respond online at Regulations.gov in favor of increasing red snapper allocation for the recreational fishing community. The deadline for comment is Monday, December 9.
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council is considering a change in the allocation with the aim of increasing the net benefits from red snapper fishing and increasing the stability of the red snapper component of the reef fish fishery, particularly the recreational sector which has experienced shorter and shorter seasons. Under proposals within Amendment 28 to the fishery management plan for reef fish resources of the Gulf of Mexico, the Gulf Council could move forward with an allocation plan that provides up to 100% of any red snapper quota that is above 9.12 million pounds to the recreational sector.
RFA executive director Jim Donofrio has sent official comments to the Gulf Council on behalf of the recreational community, and said any plan to provide at minimum 90% of any red snapper quota above that 9.12-million-pound quota would help give equal opportunity for anglers to enjoy the benefits of a rebuilding red snapper stock.
“This is not an allocation war, this is about helping reallocate a portion of the quota over and above the present threshold towards the recreational sector in order to help increase the opportunity for anglers to fish,” he said.
“Based on the alternative proposals outlined in Reef Fish Amendment 28 calling for an increase in the recreational red snapper quota only if the total snapper quota is greater than 9.12 million pounds, RFA would support adjusting the allocation percentage of any additional red snapper quota to a minimum of 90% for the recreational sector and 10% for the commercial sector, until a point at which fisheries managers determine that anglers can return to the original 195-day fishing season and four fish bag limit,” Donofrio said in the letter.
“This limited adjustment to dealing with additional quota above the 9.12-million-pound is truly the fair approach, in that it provides both sectors with a return to sensible harvest numbers previously enjoyed by both sectors at the start of the red snapper rebuilding period,” he added.
Click here to read RFA’s official comments.
RFA is encouraging anglers to go to
to enter their own comments before the deadline of Monday, December 9, 2013.