AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 7 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO STRIPED BASS
I too was asleep at the wheel when this was happening, due to moving to a new house. Sometimes we (all of us) get so busy we can’t pay attention to the what is going on with the political side of the fishing community. This bill is now headed to or assigned to the Natural Resources & Environmental Control Committee in the Delaware Senate. What this bill will do is allow commercial anglers to cull their catches if they so choose to keep larger or heavier fish. This bill was originally put into proposal to create a safer environment for commercial anglers to tag the striped bass they catch while working their gear. I was there when it was proposed to the Tidal Fin Fish Advisory Council many months ago. However the original language has been changed so that culling could occur. Whether a commercial angler will do that is beyond me, but this will allow that to happen if they so choose. The recreational anglers were asleep at the wheel on this one. No one is showing up at meetings that concern these issues, ever. Those of us that do go to meetings sometimes do not have the time to get to all of them. The last meeting on the ASMFC striped bass regulations, there was less than 25 people in attendance and most of those there wanted the limit that allowed them to keep the most fish as possible. Now people are complaining they have to throwback 80% of the bass they are catching. We will never learn until the last fish is killed out there.
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
148th GENERAL ASSEMBLY
HOUSE BILL NO. 79
AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 7 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO STRIPED BASS.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE:
Section 1. Amend Title 7 of the Delaware Code by making deletions as shown by strike through and insertions as shown by underline as follows:
§ 943 Tagging striped bass.
The affixing of a tag on a striped bass by a commercial fisherman shall be required before landing or putting on shore.
This bill provides that a striped bass must be tagged by a commercial fisherman before it is landed or put on shore.
The Bill does state specifically when the fish must be tagged. So in essence culling could occur. Meaning a smaller fish could be replaced by a large one, that smaller fish will most likely be dead. Even DNREC enforcement and scientists are against this bill. You could still make some noise to get it killed in the Senate but most likely it is too late. Contact the Natural Resources & Environmental Control (Senate). The committee members are as follows …David B. McBride; Bruce C. Ennis ; Gerald W. Hocker ; Ernesto B. Lopez ; Robert I. Marshall ; Karen E. Peterson … Call and send emails, it might make a difference if enough recreational anglers make an issue of this bill. Also start going to meetings and getting more involved sitting behind a keyboard is not going to make a difference at the forefront of issues. We will make it a point to get to more meetings now that things have calmed down from the move. We will also get out these issues faster in the future so that you can be informed as to what is going on out there. We tried starting a CCA chapter here in Delaware and no one wanted that, we could have used that to help us stop things like these proposed bills, that will allow the further depletion of an already stressed species. This is happening up and down the coast, people trying to find ways to loop hole or back door legislation. They are working very hard at it and pouring money into those efforts. All we have is a voice, but together we can make a lot of noise with many voices.