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Tina Berger
Public Affairs Specialist
Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission
Phone: (202) 289-6400
Email: tberger@asmfc.org
Fish & Boat Commission Schedules Public Hearing on Striped Bass Draft Addendum II
July 14, 2010
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Washington, DC – Atlantic coastal states from Maine through North Carolina have scheduled their hearings to gather public comment on Draft Addendum II to Amendment 6 to the Interstate Fishery Management Plan for Atlantic Striped Bass. The dates, times, and locations of the scheduled meetings follow:

Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission
July 20, 2010; 6:30 PM
Pennsbury Manor, Visitor’s Center Auditorium
400 Pennsbury Memorial Road
Morrisville, Pennsylvania
Contact: Leroy Young at (814) 359-5177

The Draft Addendum proposes two changes to the striped bass management program: (1) an increase in the coastal commercial quota, and (2) revising the definition of recruitment failure based on Technical Committee advice.

The proposal to increase the coastal commercial quota is intended to improve equality between the commercial and recreational fishery sectors. Although Amendment 6 established management programs for both fisheries based on the same target fishing mortality rate, the implementation of state-specific quotas for coastal commercial harvest (and not for recreational harvest) has prevented the commercial and recreational fisheries from responding equally to changes in striped bass population size. Since 2003, coastal commercial harvest has decreased by 3.6 percent, while recreational harvest has increased by 13.7 percent. Under the option, the Board would select a percent increase to be applied to the coastal commercial allocations assigned in Amendment 6.

The Management Board voted to include a second issue in the Draft Addendum based on information presented at the meeting. As part of its review of the juvenile abundance indices, the Striped Bass Technical Committee recommended to the Management Board a revision to how striped bass recruitment failure is defined. Juvenile abundance indices are an important component of the striped bass monitoring program and are used to determine periods of recruitment failure which can trigger management action under Amendment 6. Adopting the proposed recommendation would result in a fixed value to determine recruitment failure in each surveyed area rather than a value that changes from year to year. Use of either the Amendment 6 definition or the Technical Committee recommendation for recruitment failure does not result in any necessary changes to the current management program.

Fishermen and other interested groups are encouraged to provide input on the Draft Addendum, either by attending public hearings or providing written comments. The Draft Addendum can be obtained via the Commission’s website at www.asmfc.org under Breaking News or by contacting the Commission at (202) 289-6400. Public comment will be accepted until 5:00 PM (EST) on October 1, 2010 and should be forwarded to Nichola Meserve, FMP Coordinator, 1444 Eye Street, NW, Sixth Floor, Washington, DC 20005; (202) 289-6051 (FAX) or at nmeserve@asmfc.org (Subject line: Striped Bass Addendum II). For more information, please contact Nichola Meserve, Fishery Management Plan Coordinator at (202) 289-6400 or nmeserve@asmfc.org.

Other upcoming scheduled hearings include:

Maine Department of Marine Resources
September 14, 2010; 6:00 PM
Town of Yarmouth Log Cabin
196 Main Street
Yarmouth, Maine
Contact: Terry Stockwell at (207) 624-6553

New Hampshire Fish and Game
September 13, 2010; 7:00 PM
Urban Forestry Center
45 Elwyn Road
Portsmouth, New Hampshire
Contact: Doug Grout at (603) 868-1095

Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries
August 16, 2010; 6:00 PM
Holiday Inn
55 Ariadne Road
Dedham, Massachusetts
Contact: Jared Silva at (617) 626-1534

Rhode Island Division of Fish and Wildlife
August 17, 2010; 6:00 PM
URI, Narragansett Bay Campus, Corless Auditorium
215 South Ferry Road
Narragansett, Rhode Island
Contact: Mark Gibson at (401) 423-1935

New York Dept. of Environmental Conservation
July 21, 2010; 7:00 PM
Marine Resources Headquarters
205 North Belle Mead Road, Suite 1
East Setauket, New York
Contact: Steve Heins at (631) 444-0436

New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife
July 22; 7:00 PM
Toms River Township Clerk’s Office
L. Manuel Hirshblond Room
33 Washington Street
Toms River, New Jersey
Contact: Brandon Muffley at (609) 748-2020

July 19, 2010; 6:00 PM
Tawes State Office Building, C1 Conf. Room
580 Taylor Avenue
Annapolis, Maryland
Contact: Carrie Kennedy at (410) 260-8295

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