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CCA FILES LAWSUIT TO STOP GULF GROUPER GIVEAWAY

Coastal Conservation Association (CCA) has filed a lawsuit in federal district court in Fort Myers, Florida, challenging the adoption and implementation of Amendment 29 to the Gulf of Mexico Reef Fish Management Plan approved by United States Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke on August 30. Amendment 29 gives away a majority share of Gulf grouper to the commercial fishing industry through a catch share program.





TRUTHS, MISCONCEPTIONS AND MISREPRESENTATIONS ABOUT CATCH SHARES AND IFQ?S

The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) is intensively promoting and implementing programs which grant exclusive access privileges to public fishery resources to private individuals and corporations. Several national environment groups and the commercial industry are also promoting catch shares. Unfortunately, in mixed fisheries where there is a large and growing recreational sector, exclusive fishing rights proposals maximize benefits to the commercial fishing industry while ignoring the participation and beneficial economic impacts of recreational fishing. Damaging impacts on recreational fisheries are being disregarded.



Click to read the full report (PDF)





INAUGURAL CCA BLACK DIAMOND GOLF CHALLENGE

Black DiamondCCA Florida members have been given a once in a lifetime opportunity to play one of the most exclusive and unique golf courses in Florida. The CCA Florida - Black Diamond Experience will be played on the award winning Black Diamond Quarry Course on Monday, December 7, 2009. If you have always wanted to play this members only, strictly private course, this is your chance. Please click here to download the registration form.



We have a Hell's Bay Boatworks 17' Professional, valued at over $40,000 on the line for a Hole in One Challenge, with a second Hole in One Challenge for a shot at $20,000! Other contests include longest drive and closest to the pin, and of course no CCA event would be complete without a silent auction and raffle!



Your entry includes everything you need for a once in a lifetime experience at Black Diamond including range balls, greens fees, cart, boxed lunch, awards presentation and BBQ dinner.



Individual entries are just $275, or coordinate your own foursome for just $1,000. For more information please contact James Holder (352) 422-7296 or [email protected].





CCA TO TESTIFY BEFORE SENATE COMMITTEE ON OCEANS POLICY

Committee seeks CCA?s input on role for recreational fisheries in ocean, coastal stewardship

U.S. Sen. John D. Rockefeller IV (D-WV), chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, has invited Coastal Conservation Association to appear before a hearing on Nov. 4 to testify on the National Ocean Policy Task Force?s Interim Report. CCA federal lobbyist Matt Paxton will address the development of the National Ocean Policy and the role for recreational fisheries in ocean, coastal and Great Lakes stewardship.





COLLABORATIVE LETTER POINTS OUT DEFICITS IN DATA COLLECTION

Unlikely combination of groups takes a stand for recreational angling

An impressive array of the major marine industry, recreational angling and environmental groups co-signed an October 22 letter to Dr. Jane Lubchenco, administrator of the National Atmospheric and Ocean Administration (NOAA), calling for reform of recreational angling data collection by the federal government.





CCA NAMES NEW PRESIDENT

After an extensive nationwide search, Coastal Conservation Association selected conservation veteran Patrick Murray as president of the national organization at its meeting last week in Houston.



?Pat brings unparalleled expertise in the field of marine resource conservation, advocacy, fundraising, membership development and communication,? said Venable Proctor, chairman of CCA National. ?He has an exceptional reputation in conservation circles throughout the nation and will be able to leverage his expertise and experience during a crucial time for fisheries management issues."





FEDERAL MANAGERS SHUT DOWN ANOTHER GULF FISHERY

The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) continued its bizarre history of biased management regarding Gulf amberjack when it announced this week that the recreational season for the popular offshore species will close on October 24 due to the recreational sector overfishing its quota. This announcement comes barely two years after the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council arbitrarily shifted a significant portion of recreational allocation to the commercial sector.





FEDS APPROVE GULF GROUPER IFQ ?

THE LARGEST PUBLIC FISHERY GIVEAWAY IN FLORIDA?S HISTORY

The Federal Gulf of Mexico Fisheries Management Council and the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) have expedited the implementation of an IFQ (Individual Fishing Quota) program for exclusive access privileges for Gulf grouper. The Gulf Council?s Grouper IFQ program will allocate and grant exclusive right of access to more than 65 percent of all the Gulf red and gag grouper to a limited number of commercial interests.





CCA MEMBERS ENJOY DISCOUNTS ON EVOLUTION RODS

Evolution RodsCCA Florida and Evolution Products, Inc. have partnered together to raise funds for CCA and to offer discounts to CCA members. Join the Evolution Revolution and step up to the strongest rods available. Evolution Rods will amaze you with their strength to weight ratio. Landing fish after fish, these rods hold up to anything any large hard fighting fish can dish out. Evolution also manufactures a complete line of Catch, Weigh, and Release Tools. These tools are excellent for handling, controlling, and weighing your catch. All at a very affordable price. All CCA Florida members will receive a 20% discount on all of Evolutions products when ordered off of their website. It is quick and easy! All you have to do is go to www.evolutionproductsinc.com, click on the products you would like to purchase and enter ?CCA? as the coupon code and enjoy the savings. In addition, Evolution Products Inc. will donate 10% of your total back to CCA Florida! Be sure to look for Evolution rods and tools at your local banquet.





CCA FLORIDA LIFE MEMBERSHIP CAMPAIGN

Life MemberFor a limited time only? Upgrade your CCA membership now and enjoy additional free gifts from Evolution Products Inc. In addition to the Life member cube, stickers and choice of print, all new Life members will also receive a pair of Gorilla Pliers ($89.99) and 26# Lipper Tool ($99.99) donated by Evolution Products. CCA Florida would like to thank Evolution Products for their generous donation to CCA Florida and to our new and upgrading Life members. For additional information on Life membership, please contact Brian Gorski at 407-854-7002 Ext. 14, or click here to download a PDF with more details.





CONSERVATIONISTS CALL FOR U.S. ACTION TO SAVE BLUEFIN TUNA

Citing the failure of the international community to rein in harvest of bluefin tuna, Coastal Conservation Association is urging the United States to proceed with an effort to list the Atlantic bluefin on Appendix I to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) and prohibit the international trade in bluefin.





CCA Florida Partners with Run for the Redfish



Run for the RedfishOn December 5, 2009 runners from across the Southeast will participate in the inaugural Run for the Redfish in Panama City Beach, Florida, a combined half marathon, 5k run and kids fun run will be held at Pier Park. A portion of the proceeds for event will benefit CCA Florida. Participants can also make an additional contribution to CCA Florida when they register for the run. The run will begin at the Front Beach Road entrance to Pier Park and continue down Front Beach Road, looping back to end at Margaritaville. Margaritaville will host the post race celebration and awards ceremony.



Shotgun start to the race will be at 8:00 am for the half marathon and 8:30am for the 5k. All runners of the half marathon and 5k will receive a Run for the Redfish long sleeve T-shirt as part of their participation. Race committee member Joe Edgecombe said, ?As an avid runner in Bay County, I?m excited to help bring a running event of this caliber to our area.



The Run for the Redfish has all the bells and whistles; a certified course, professional timing, a professional race day photographer to capture the moment, and a venue that is above all the rest. Panama City Beach, the Tourism Development Council, The Resort Collection, Pier Park, Margaritaville and a team of dedicated individuals have made this a destination event! The best location and the most ?bang for the bucks? road race in the entire region!? The Run for the Redfish is a new and exciting event for Panama City Beach. For additional information and to register, please visit www.runfortheredfish.com.





1st Annual Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge Crab Trap Cleanup



Crab Traps RemovedSaturday, August 15th CCA members from around Central Florida gathered at Haulover Canal, on the edge of Mosquito Lagoon, to participate in the First Annual Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge Crab Trap Cleanup. Primarily focused on the Mosquito Lagoon area, the cleanup was made possible in part due to a recent change in the laws governing crab fishing. There are now rolling 10 day closures for crab fishing around the state. During these closures all legal, working traps must be removed from the waters of the specific region. This closure makes it much easier to set up events just like this, where any trap in the water is considered abandoned and subject to disposal.



Click to read full story and view photos.



CCA Florida ICC

7th ANNUAL CCA FLORIDA INTER-CHAPTER CHALLENGE



The 7th Annual

Coastal Conservation Association - Florida

Inter-Chapter Challenge



Friday, June 25th & Saturday, June 26th 2010





CCA CALLS FOR BALANCED APPROACH TO RED SNAPPER CRISIS

Unprecedented fisheries disaster in South Atlantic needs calculated response



In late 2006, Congress passed a significantly strengthened Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Management and Conservation Act, the overriding piece of legislation that guides federal fisheries management. Among other progressive provisions, the new law required managers to end overfishing by 2010. Only a year later, a stock assessment for South Atlantic red snapper, the first modern stock assessment ever done on the species, was released and proclaimed red snapper undergoing severe overfishing and so grossly overfished that it was instantly a full-blown crisis discovered right under managers' noses.





CCA FLORIDA ANNOUNCES 2009 LEGISLATIVE CONSERVATION AWARDS

The Florida Chapter of the Coastal Conservation Association has selected five state legislators to receive Legislative Conservation Awards in recognition of their support for marine fisheries conservation issues in 2009.





2009 SALTWATER LICENSE LEGISLATIVE AMENDMENTS ARE A VERY GOOD THING FOR FLORIDA ANGLER

Governor Charlie Crist signed CS/SB 1742 into law and repealed the resident shoreline exemption from the Florida Saltwater Fishing License. The shoreline exemption repeal was a top legislative priority for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and CCA Florida. With help from Senator Lee Constantine (R-Altamonte Springs), Senator Carey Baker (R-Eustis), and Representative Baxter Troutman (R-Winter Haven), the bill was carried through the Florida Legislature and placed on the Governors desk.





CCA FLORIDA URGES FWC TO PREVENT LARGE SCALE COMMERCIAL TAKE OF GROUPER IN GULF STATE WATERS

CCA Florida has requested the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) to amend their proposed Gulf grouper rule to make the season closures and daily limits for red and gag grouper the same for both recreational and commercial fishers in state waters of the Gulf of Mexico. The Commission will take action on the proposed grouper rule at their April 15-16 meeting in Tallahassee, FL.





CCA Comments and Recommendations For Everglades National Park



We urge the National Park Service (NPS) to recognize that the vast majority of the anglers and boaters that use the Park respect it and responsibly operate their vessels. The NPS must also acknowledge that recreational fishing is an historic use which existed long before the Park was established. CCA reminds the NPS that the General Management Plan which is ultimately adopted will be a long term plan and any restrictions will have long term consequences and that an incremental approach is a much better alternative. Read more?





PROCESS OR PROCLAMATION?

From the South Atlantic to the western Pacific, federal marine management is a study in contrasts



The United States has acted twice this week to impose restrictions on vast sections of ocean, dictating the future accessibility of those important resources. One action took years of scientific study and required dozens of public meetings attended by hundreds of concerned citizens, and thousands of hours of effort and organization before being implemented. The other took just months and was accomplished by the stroke of a pen. Taken together, the two recent marine management actions have cast a confusing net over the world of federal fisheries management.





SHORT-TERM GAIN, LONG-TERM LOSS

Gulf Council tackles longlines, but fumbles future of grouper fishery.



The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council engaged in buffet-style fisheries management at its latest meeting in Mississippi, picking and choosing data to plot a dubious course of action for the Gulf grouper fishery.





STUDY REVEALS ECONOMIC REALITY FOR GULF GROUPER

CCA-funded study shows value of 100 percent recreational allocation.



In an important development in the debate over the proper management of gag and red grouper in the Gulf of Mexico, a newly released economic study of the fishery finds that a 100 percent allocation to the recreational sector would yield maximum economic value to society.





CCA CALLS FOR DENIAL OF LONGLINE PERMITS

Longliners seek extension and expansion of permits to fish in conservation zones.



Alarmed at the growing prospect of ?longline creep,? conservationists are calling on the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) to deny a request to extend and expand Exempted Fishing Permits issued in 2008 that cracked open the door for the commercial longline industry to fish in conservation zones created in the Atlantic Ocean, Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea. Citing a host of concerns in a letter to NMFS, Coastal Conservation Association is demanding that the original permits be allowed to expire on Feb. 28, 2009.





CCA LIFE MEMBER AND GIFT MEMBERSHIP PROMOTION

Due to the success of our Life Membership campaign we have extended the ARC Dehooker promotion through the end of the year! Take advantage of this generous offer from our friends at ARC today. We are also offering gift memberships for the holidays. Give the gift of conservation!



Downloadable forms available here.





CCA FLORIDA GRASSROOTS ALERT!



NEW RESEARCH REVEALS BOTTOM LONGLINE GEAR IS KILLING LARGE NUMBERS OF ENDANGERED SEA TURTLES!

CCA Florida strongly recommends that the Gulf Council and National Marine Fisheries Service take emergency action to prohibit bottom longline gear in the Gulf of Mexico off of Florida.





CCA FLORIDA PRESENTS 2008 FWC OFFICER OF THE YEAR AWARD

In 2007, CCA Florida began a program, in conjunction with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), to recognize individual FWC Officers who have provided outstanding law enforcement work. Officers are selected on a regional basis and recognized at CCA Florida?s local chapter banquets throughout the year. Annually, one of those officers is selected to be the CCA Florida - Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission - officer of the year. Thus far CCA Florida has recognized 25 outstanding FWC Officers and this year alone CCA Florida has presented awards to 18 officers.





KARL WICKSTROM SELECTED FOR IGFA HALL OF FAME

Karl Wickstrom, Founder and Editor?in-Chief of Florida Sportsman Magazine, CCA Florida Chairman Emeritus, and longtime advocate for fisheries conservation and recreational anglers has been selected for induction into the International Game Fish Association Hall of Fame. Karl was one of the founding members and longtime leaders of CCA Florida.







CCA FLORIDA JOINS WILDLIFE FOUNDATION OF FLORIDA AND FLORIDA FISH

AND WILDLIFE CONSERVATION COMMISSION IN SALTWATER HATCHERY AND

HABITAT INITIATIVE

CCA Florida members met in Sarasota to work with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) on the Florida Marine Fisheries Enhancement Initiative (FMFEI). The FWC held a two day meeting September 29 and 30 at the Mote Marine Laboratory where discussions on marine fisheries enhancement centers were held among approximately fifty participants. During the two day meeting the participants were split among the Finance and Legislative, Fish Production, Habitat Restoration, and Education and Outreach groups. Volunteers from CCA Florida were placed in each group. The groups met to discuss a work plan for the coming months on their specific issues. These issues ranged from locating funding sources, timing for putting fish in the water, and where the hatcheries will be located.





RECREATIONAL ANGLING SECURED BY PRESIDENTIAL ORDER

WASHINGTON ? President George W. Bush has again highlighted the importance of recreational angling to the country by signing an Executive Order that ensures federal agencies will manage fishing as sustainable activity in all federal waters, including marine protected areas (MPAs). The Order signed on Sept. 26, 2008, modifies Executive Order 12962 signed by President Bill Clinton in 1995.





CCA FLORIDA DONATES FISH MEASURING TOOLS TO

FLORIDA FISH AND WILDLIFE CONSERVATION COMMISSION

CCA Florida Chairman Mark Carter formally presented the fish measuring tools to Commissioners at the September Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) meeting in Jacksonville.



?On behalf of our 10,000 members and as chairman of CCA Florida I was proud to present the donation of ?Check-It Stiks? to the law enforcement arm of the FWC. As an organization we know how important their efforts are to the sustainability of our marine resources and just how difficult and, at times, dangerous, their jobs can be,? said Mark Carter, CCA Florida Chairman. ?The measurement tools are a small token of our thanks for their efforts by hopefully making their duties easier. These dedicated men and women truly ?measure up? to the high standards and ideals set forth by the institution they represent.?





CCA FLORIDA ANNOUNCES 2008 LEGISLATIVE CONSERVATION AWARDS

The Coastal Conservation Association of Florida has selected five state legislators to receive Legislative Conservation Awards in recognition of their support for marine fisheries conservation issues in 2008.



?We are very pleased to recognize these individuals,? said Mark Carter, CCA Florida Chairman. ?Their ongoing involvement and support for fisheries conservation has been a great benefit for marine resources and recreational anglers.?





CCA FLORIDA PROMOTES LIFE MEMBER TO CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER

CCA Florida recently completed a major overhaul of staff assignments and duties by promoting life member and long time staff member, Brian Gorski, to the position of Chief Operating Officer. Brian will be responsible for all business operations of CCA Florida including fundraising, membership and corporate relations.





FWC COMMISSIONERS RESPECT CITIZEN MANDATE AND CONSTITUTIONAL BAN ON GILL NETS

Commercial netting interests once again tried to get the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) to allow larger mesh sizes in nets so they could be used as a gill net. The issue was discussed with public testimony before the full Commission at its June 12 meeting in Ft. Lauderdale.



After several hours of staff presentations and public comment the Commissioners began their discussion. One of the first to speak was Commissioner Ken Wright.



?This is not a science question, the resource has rebounded. This constitutional amendment passed by a remarkable margin and our predecessors created a bright line definition, done objectively, and upheld in litigation,? said Wright. ?I am adamantly in favor of keeping the current two inch regulation. We are Trustees of a decision and bound to follow the will of the people.?



5th ANNUAL CCA FL INTER-CHAPTER CHALLENGE





CCA FLORIDA ADVOCACY UPDATE:

COMMERCIAL NETTING INTERESTS TRY AGAIN TO GET 500 SQ. FT. GILL NETS IN FLORIDA WATERS!

In November of 1994 an overwhelming 72 percent of Florida voters said yes to the constitutional amendment limiting marine net fishing. The amendment includes both a prohibition on the use of gill and entangling nets in all state waters and a size limit on other nets. Although the restrictions have been in place for 14 years, there are still factions within the commercial industry who refuse to accept the legal reality that the constitutional prohibition on gill nets means no gill nets.



CCA FLORIDA EXPANDS ADVOCACY STAFF

CCA Florida has added to its advocacy staff to address the growing number of major fisheries conservation and angler access issues. John ?Trip? Aukeman joins the CCA Florida staff as Deputy Director for Advocacy.



CCA FLORIDA GRASS ROOTS ALERT!

MOSQUITO LAGOON AND MERRITT ISLAND NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE PROPOSED FOR NASA COMMERCIAL LAUNCH SITES!

The Mosquito Lagoon and Merritt Island area is one of the premier fishing destinations in Florida?s six billion dollar saltwater recreational fishery. Florida?s fishery is the largest in the U.S., and twice the value of the second largest state. It is one of the major economic engines driving Florida?s tourist economy.



NASA is proposing to develop a commercial space launch facility. NASA consultants have identified two 200 acre alternatives. One of the alternatives is right on the southwest shoreline of Mosquito Lagoon. Major objections to both areas were voiced by a large turn out of saltwater anglers, hikers, bird watchers and other conservationists at recent public hearings.



CCA FLORIDA ADVOCACY UPDATE:

Moquito Lagoon Commercial Space Launch Facility Comments and Recommendations



GULF GROUPER ALERT!

STOP THE INEQUITABLE REDUCTIONS ON RECREATIONAL FISHERS!

The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council has proposed inequitable reductions in gag grouper take. These proposals brought opposition from hundreds of anglers and divers at the Council?s January 30 Public hearing. The Council is proposing a forty five percent reduction in gag take. This results in recreational fishers being limited to only one gag grouper in a three fish aggregate bag limit. Fishing for all groupers will be closed to recreational take from January 15 to April 15. These severe restrictions on recreational fishers are being proposed while commercial fishers retain their 6,000 pound trip limit of any grouper, and have only a one month closure during the spawning aggregation period.



CCA FLORIDA GRASS ROOTS ALERT! WHO OWNS THE FISH? MARINE FISHERIES ARE PUBLICLY OWNED RESOURCES. ALLOCATION PROCEDURES DETERMINE WHO GETS THE FISH.

The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (SAFMC) is soliciting public input on possible options regarding the allocation of fishery resources between recreational and commercial user groups. Allocations within the recreational (e.g., for-hire and private) and commercial (e.g., hook-and-line, black sea bass pots, and longlines) sectors are also under consideration.



The reauthorized Magnuson-Stevens Act requires the Councils to establish Annual Catch Limits (pounds or numbers of fish) for each species and Accountability Measures that ensure the catch limit is not exceeded in any year by any sector. To do this the Council must allocate the Total Allowable Catch (TAC) from the stock assessment process between recreational and commercial sectors.



FEDS PUT SWORDFISH LONGLINE BOATS IN FLORIDA EAST COAST PROTECTED AREA FOR ?RESEARCH? PURPOSES

The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) has issued Exempted Fishing Permits (EFP) for three commercial swordfish longline boats to fish for research purposes in the Florida East Coast and Charleston Bump closed areas.



?NMFS issued the permits despite overwhelming public objection, opposition from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and Florida?s Governor Charlie Crist, and the South Atlantic Fisheries Management Council,? said Bill Bird, CCA Florida President and Government Relations Committee Chairman. ?The feds have disregarded the comments and recommendations of Florida?s citizens and governmental leaders. Unfortunately, it appears that NMFS is just laying the ground work for allowing the longline fleet back into the Protected Areas.?



CCA AND EVERGLADES NATIONAL PARK: CCA Florida Strongly Opposes No Motor - No Access Zones (PDF)

Earlier this year the National Park Service (NPS) released four preliminary alternatives, which were presented to the public as options and the basis of the development of the Everglades National Park General Management Plan (GMP). Originally the NPS had intended to select one as the Preferred Alternative. The four alternatives ranged from Alternative A which is the no action ? status quo option to Alternative D which would prohibit the use of internal combustion engines in waters less than three feet deep, in Florida Bay alone, that alternative would prohibit traditional boating in more than 150 square miles! Other alternatives had large ?backcountry? designations which are essentially no motor zones.



PRESIDENT ORDERS GAMEFISH STATUS FOR RED DRUM, STRIPED BASS

Surrounded by conservationists and anglers on the shores of historic Chesapeake Bay, President Bush today signed an Executive Order establishing gamefish status for red drum and striped bass in federal waters. The Order is a landmark victory for recreational anglers who have fought for decades to restore and conserve two of the most coveted sport fish in America.

President George W. Bush signs an Executive Order to protect the striped bass and red drum fish populations Saturday, Oct. 20, 2007, at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in St. Michaels, Md. President Bush is joined during the signing by, from left, Michael Nussman, president of American Sportfishing Association; Brad Burns, president of Stripers Forever; David Pfeifer, president of Shimano America Corp.; Walter Fondren, chairman of Coastal Conservation Association; U.S. Secretary of Commerce Carlos Gutierrez; U.S. Rep. Wayne Gilchrest of Maryland and U.S. Secretary of Interior Dirk Kempthorne. White House photo by Eric Draper



State Office: 4061 Forrestal Ave, Suite 8 ? Orlando, FL 32806

P.O. Box 568886 ? Orlando, FL 32856

Phone: (407) 854-7002 ? Fax: (407) 854-1766

e-mail: Marcia Dunfee

Advocacy Office: 905 East Park Avenue ? Tallahassee, FL 32301

Phone: (850) 224-3474 ? Fax: (850) 224-5199

e-mail: Amy Harllee

All mail MUST be sent to PO BOX address, not street address.

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CCA became my favorite group a few years ago when they sued the Feds over a grouper closing for the entire gulf. CCA & recreational fisherman WON!!!

If you're a recreational fisherman you should support CCA... they are supporting you
 
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