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ben speciale 1

ben speciale 2A bill known as the Modern Fish Act and related legislation will soon come to the floor in both the House and the U.S. Senate. This law aims to improve recreational access to federal fisheries while safeguarding sustainability for future generations. Please advocate for the Modern Fish Act by sending a pre-written letter to your elected officials on Bassforsalt.com, Yamaha Marine Advocacy, Boating United, or Keepamericafishing.org.

 

Please listen to Yamaha Marine Group president Ben Speciale's video asking for your help in protecting your access to fisheries and support the Modern Fish Act by advocating TODAY.
Be on the lookout for future messages from Bass for Salt to defend your right to fish.

Rolling Lab on Wheels Hauled Habitat Materials across the Country
 

JACKSONVILLE, Florida – (June 14, 2018) – On Tuesday, June 5, 2018, employees of Shell, Shell Lubricants customers, national media outlets, Coastal Conservation Association Florida (CCA Florida) and CCA’s National Habitat Program, the Building Conservation Trust (BCT), gathered at the Prime F. Osborn III Convention Center in Jacksonville, Florida to learn the results of the Starship cross-country drive.

 
“Through this road trip, we were able to test the Starship truck along with a number of technologies available today and provide insight into what trucking fleets and owner/operators could consider adopting to help reduce fuel use and emissions as they haul heavy loads,” said Carlos Maurer, president, Shell Lubricants Americas. “We were fortunate that our relationship with Building Conservation Trust and CCA Florida made the perfect load available – reef material – that helped us complete our cross-country drive and create a new oasis for ocean life off the Florida coast.” 

Read more: Shell Reveals Starship Initiative Results at Finale Event

FirstCast

CCA Florida STAR, presented by Yamaha, kicks off Saturday, May 26, and offers $500,000 in prizes.

On Saturday, May 26 at posted sunrise, the 4thAnnual CCA Florida STAR, presented by Yamaha, kicks off in Florida and encourages thousands of anglers of all ages to fish, photograph and release their catch for their share of $500,000 in prizes.  CCA Florida, the state’s leading organization dedicated to marine fisheries conservation,education and advocacy, organizes the 101-day fishing event, which targets 11 species in 17 divisions, with most division winners determined by a random drawing, a format that encourages participants to protect and conserve Florida’s fisheries for future generations.  

As the largest family-friendly saltwater fishing competition in Florida, the event runs through Labor Day and boasts amazing prizes from CCA Florida partners for anglers of all ages and skill levels.

The first eight registered anglers who catch a tagged redfish will be eligible for prizes including a new truck or boat, motor and trailer package. Adult anglers will be eligible for their choice of confirmed prizes in the signature Tagged Redfish Division including a Contender 22 Sport, a GMC Sierra truck, a Pathfinder 2200 TRS, a Hewes Redfisher 16, a Carolina Skiff 21 Ultra and a Cottonmouth Aluminum Bay/Flats boat, all powered by Yamaha.  Prizes for the first two youth anglers in this division include a Carolina Skiff 16JVX CC boat, powered with a Yamaha 40 HP motor and trailer. The first registered angler catching a tagged dolphin is eligible for $10,000 cash or scholarship. 

In addition to the Tagged Redfish and Tagged Dolphin Divisions, other divisions include:

Saltmarsh Skiff by Ankona Boats Open Inshore Division, featuring:
-Non-tagged Redfish, presented by Atlas Heavy Duty Jack Plate
-Snook Division, presented by Bossman Boats
-Spotted Seatrout Division, presented by Stumpknocker Boats
-Tarpon Division, presented by Humminbird

 

Textron Off Road Offshore Division, featuring:
-Kingfish Division, presented by Cannon
-Grouper Division
-Non-tagged Dolphin

Other Divisions, including:
-Youth Scholarship Division, presented by Academy Sports + Outdoors
-Ladies Division
-Fly Division
-Kayak Division
-Professional Guides Division, presented by Yamaha
-Conservation Division, presented by Power-Pole Shallow Water Anchor
-Costa Kick Plastic Trash Division, presented by Sunsect
-Lionfish Division

Registration is $40 for current CCA Florida members, or $75 for non-members, which includes CCA Florida membership. Kids ages 6-17 can register for free with their current ($10) CCA Florida youth membership. 

All entries must be photographed with the official 2018 CCA Florida Measuring Device, which is now available free of charge at various locations throughout the state, including all Florida West Marine stores, our preferred distribution location.  For more information and a full listing of measuring device locations, visit ccaflstar.com.

Florida anglers, and the economy, to benefit from an increased season beginning in June.

Orlando, FL – April 17, 2018 – CCA Florida, the state’s leading organization dedicated to marine fisheries conservation, education and advocacy, today shared that the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) will implement a 40-day red snapper season in State and Federal waters off the coast of Florida beginning June 11, 2018.

Today, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) approved an exempted fishing permit filed by the FWC that will provide more flexibility in the management of the Gulf red snapper fishery. CCA is pleased that the FWC will implement a 40-day red snapper season in State and Federal waters off the coast of Florida as a result of the approved EFP.

“We have been involved in the red snapper fishery for years and we’re encouraged by this forward-thinking by the FWC,” stated Executive Director Brian Gorski.  “We are big proponents of state management and would like to see full state management for all reef fish in the future.”

As the federal season in Florida has dwindled annually, from a year-round fishery to a proposed three-day season last year, the red snapper stock continues to grow. CCA sees a great advantage of having the State fully manage reef fish, as they were able to implement a 43-day season last year and a 40-day season this year.

The EFP will provide FWC the opportunity to demonstrate their ability to effectively manage the recreational red snapper fishery by using current data collection methods and incorporating new reporting tools such as iSnapper. However, the FWC is still limited by NOAA and cannot fully manage these fisheries, as NOAA dictates the total allowable recreational catch that is given to the State.

CCA Florida commends the FWC for their willingness to work with recreational anglers and believes that a longer red snapper season will be beneficial for Florida’s economy while providing opportunities for families to enjoy the fishery.

The South Atlantic Fisheries Management Council is also looking at limited season for Red Snapper. CCA is in favor of a season in the South Atlantic and we encourage commenting to NOAA online.

Contact: Teresa Donaldson | 407.923.3530 | This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Federal fishery managers are considering allowing commercial longlining in the closed conservation area off Florida protecting young swordfish: Express your outrage now.

Click to read the full story

Industrial harvesters try to pry into conservation zone, again

Alexandria, VA – March 6, 2018 – Today, leading recreational fishing and boating organizations submitted public comment to the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council in opposition to an Exempted Fishing Permit (EFP) that would allow pelagic longline (PLL) vessels into the East Florida Coast Pelagic Longline Closed Area.

More than two decades ago, swordfish in the Western Atlantic were in serious trouble due to overfishing. The public responded forcefully to the plight of swordfish, and as a result, nursery areas were identified and closed to the United States PLL fleet in 2001. Today, anglers point to the recovery with pride as a significant conservation victory.

Read more: Recreational Fishing Organizations Oppose Longline Permit

Senate Commerce Committee Passes Landmark Legislation with Bipartisan Support


Washington, D.C. – February 28, 2018 – Today, the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation overwhelmingly approved S. 1520, the Modernizing Recreational Fisheries Management Act of 2017 (Modern Fish Act). This legislation calls for critically important updates to the oversight of federal fisheries, including adding more tools to the management toolbox, improving data collection techniques, and examining some fishery allocations that are based on decades-old decisions.

The Modern Fish Act was introduced in the Senate in July 2017 by Sens. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) and Bill Nelson (D-Fla.). It has since received strong bipartisan support from 12 cosponsors representing coastal and non-coastal states alike. In addition, a broad coalition of organizations representing the saltwater recreational fishing and boating community has endorsed the Modern Fish Act and highlighted the importance of updating the nation’s fisheries management system to more accurately distinguish between recreational and commercial fishing.

“The bipartisan leadership on display today in the Senate Commerce Committee will not soon be forgotten by America’s 11 million saltwater recreational anglers,” said Jeff Angers, president of the Center for Sportfishing Policy. “We want to thank our many champions in Congress, particularly Sens. Wicker and Nelson, for recognizing the need for serious reforms to the broken federal fisheries management system. We look forward to working with congressional leaders in both chambers to get this legislation across the finish line.”

Through years of deliberation, the priorities of the recreational fishing and boating community were identified and presented to federal policy makers by the Commission on Saltwater Recreational Fisheries Management. This group is also referred to as the Morris-Deal Commission, named for co-chairs Johnny Morris, founder and CEO of Bass Pro Shops, and Scott Deal, president of Maverick Boat Group. In 2014, the Morris-Deal Commission released “A Vision for Managing America’s Saltwater Recreational Fisheries,” which included six key policy changes to expand saltwater recreational fishing’s social, economic and conservation benefits to the nation.

Many recommendations of the Morris-Deal Commission are addressed by the legislation passed today by the Senate Commerce Committee.

“Today’s action by the Commerce Committee is further evidence that Congress recognizes the economic and societal impact that recreational saltwater fishing has on our nation,” said Mike Nussman, president and CEO of the American Sportfishing Association. “There are 11 million saltwater anglers in the U.S. who have a $63 billion economic impact annually and generate 440,000 jobs. We applaud the Senate Commerce Committee for taking this important step and call for the full Senate to quickly take action on this legislation.”

“For too long, the federal fisheries management system has limited access for America’s recreational anglers and boaters due to faulty data and misguided regulations, which in turn has jeopardized the economic vitality of the recreational boating industry,” said Thom Dammrich, president of the National Marine Manufacturers Association. “On behalf of the estimated 650,000 workers the recreational boating industry supports, we are eager to continue working with our allies in both chambers of Congress to get this important legislation to the president’s desk.”

“The bipartisan vote taken by the Senate Commerce Committee today demonstrates the nation’s broad support for federal fisheries management reform,” said Patrick Murray, president of Coastal Conservation Association. “We are proud to work with Members of Congress on both sides of the aisle to advance a common-sense policy that remains true to our conservation goals while promoting access to our nation’s healthy natural resources. We look forward to this important bill receiving quick consideration by the full Senate.”

“We thank Chairman Thune and Sens. Wicker and Nelson, as well as the large bipartisan group of Modern Fish Act cosponsors, for their leadership on this issue,” said Jeff Crane, president of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation. “The Modern Fish Act is a top priority for saltwater anglers across the United States and charts a clear course for effective recreational fisheries management.  I encourage Congress to use the momentum from today’s Committee vote to secure quick passage in both chambers.”

“The Modern Fish Act represents five years’ worth of input from our community and will increase the level of trust between America’s 11 million saltwater anglers and federal fisheries managers,” said Whit Fosburgh, president and CEO of the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership. “Recreational hunters and anglers have been at the forefront of resource conservation in this country for more than a century, and the Modern Fish Act gives recreational anglers an opportunity to continue to lead in conservation by improving upon data collection and stock assessments. We’re extremely encouraged to see these updated management approaches tailored to meet the unique needs of recreational fishing, rather than forcing recreational seasons into a management scheme designed for commercial fisheries.”

“We owe great thanks to Senator Wicker for introducing the Modern Fish Act to finally address the specific needs of recreational anglers under federal law,” said Jim Donofrio, president of the Recreational Fishing Alliance. “We want to thank Chairman John Thune and Ranking Member Bill Nelson for their leadership in bringing this important bill to a vote in the Commerce Committee today. The bipartisan spirit we are witnessing in this Committee is refreshing, and we look forward to final action by the full Senate and House.”

On December 13, 2017, the Modern Fish Act (H.R. 2023) was approved by the House Natural Resources Committee as part of H.R. 200. 

Following today’s vote, the coalition encourages Senate leadership to quickly bring S. 1520 to the floor for final passage. Marine recreational anglers and boaters are eager to see this landmark legislation move through the House and Senate and signed into law.

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