View Full Version : Establishment of "no-fishing" zones

07-12-2005, 09:24 PM
To all my fellow fishermen and women,

This is the latest on Bill S529, "Senator O'Leary's Bill". In a nutshell the bill -
Calls for the establishment of no-fishing zones
Stacks an advisory panel with anti-fishing groups
Calls for the establishment of a license. From the bill's exact language:
"(n) The secretary of environmental affairs, in consultation with the department of environmental protection, the department of conservation and recreation, and the division of marine fisheries, is hereby authorized and directed to examine the establishment or renegotiation of fees, licenses, permits, rents, leases and the adjustment or development of other revenue sources for the purposes of funding ocean resource enhancement or restoration through the Ocean Resources and Waterways Fund"

Folks, please show up at the hearing. Make sure you get your letters in to the committee. Be prepared to contact your state representatives.

We all want to be fishing this time of year and not dealing with fish politics. But we must confront this threat now or dedal with the consequences starting next year's fishing season.

Please take one minute of your time and foward the letter. We do not want to lose what we have. Fight for what you believe in. I did and I'm glad I did!
The hearing will be held on Monday, July 18 at 1pm in Room 1A at the Statehouse. I know this is a bad time for most of us but please, if you can attend, please do. Thank you.
For conservation and access,

We have no reason to believe that the environmental groups NRDC, CLF, ED, TOC will accept any compromise that results in anything less than numerous permanent no-fishing zones in Massachusetts waters. However, we will continue to work with the sponsors and the committee to assure that our access is not arbitrarily denied.


Below is a letter we drafted for the members of the committee. Due to the short amount of time available, we need to EMAIL the letter to the committee ASAP. It is important that everyone send in this letter. Please pass it along to everyone you know and ask them to send it in, too.

Be sure to include the date at the top, and your name and home address at the bottom.

Laura Coughlin is the committee staffer who is accepting the letters. Her address is at the top of the letter.
Thanks for being involved.
Senator Pamela Resor
Representative Frank Smizik
Chairs, Joint Committee on Environment, Natural Resources, & Agriculture
Room 473F, State House
Boston, MA 02133

Re: S529, An Act Relative to Comprehensive Ocean Resources Management

Dear Chairs Resor and Smizik:

As a resident of Massachusetts and a recreational fisherman, I must express my strong opposition to S529 as currently written. While I am supportive of the overall goals of this legislation, I believe the sections of the bill that address the issue of no-fishing Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) require substantial revisions before I can offer my support.

No-fishing MPAs are very controversial and would undoubtedly cause great social and economic harm in the coastal communities of Massachusetts.

The sections of S529 that address a process for how Massachusetts will determine where and under which conditions the marine waters of the Commonwealth could be closed to all fishing activities are in need of substantial revision. As currently written, I believe these sections of S529 leave the 1 million recreational anglers of Massachusetts vulnerable to the establishment of no-fishing zones based on political, philosophical, and profit-driven desires rather than science and necessity.

I respectfully request that the sponsors of the legislation and members of the Joint Committee on Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture meet with representatives of the recreational fishing community to draft substitute language that establishes an unambiguous, science-based process for the consideration and possible implementation of no-fishing MPAs.

I wish to reemphasize that I appreciate the efforts of the sponsors of S529 and the members of the committee to improve how Massachusetts' manages our oceans. I will strongly consider supporting S529 if my concerns are met.

Thank you for your consideration.