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Word is out that the job-devastating bill known as the Game Fish Bill HB353, will again be introduced for vote soon in the NC General Assembly. I write to beg for your support to fight this bill.
What this bill does is make popular wild-caught fish (red drum, striped bass spotted sea trout and other species) unavailable for restaurants and marketplace consumption. And it adds a severe economic burden on our commercial fishermen by restricting equipment, methods and access to and the ability to sell the fruit of their labors.
This bill limits the legal fishing of these fish to sports fishermen, only: weekend and vacation fishermen who do not depend on fishing for their job.
What this bill does not do is make available even one more fish to be fished. By anybody.
This bill does not represent the views of the vast majority of the recreational fishermen who often find work as commercial fishermen. Advocacy is limited to a handful of wealthy single-issue recreational fishermen and their lobbyists. This bill is based on flawed economic data that counts every possible economic gain for the recreational fishermen while grossly misrepresenting the economic contributions of the seafood producing industry.