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April 13, 2015

Release of NOAA NMFS National Saltwater Recreational Fisheries Policy - Implementation Plan

http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/sfa/management/recreational/documents/noaa_recfish_imp_plan.pdf
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http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/sfa/management/recreational/policy/implementation_plan_2015-2018.html

A Note from the Assistant Administrator for Fisheries

Saltwater recreational fishing is an enormously popular American pastime, economic force, and contributor to conservation. Millions access America's great outdoors through recreational fishing each year, strengthening families, friendships, and communities while contributing billions to the national economy.

NOAA Fisheries believes that saltwater recreational fisheries hold great promise for introducing and connecting the next generation to the natural world while simultaneously presenting complex stewardship challenges.

Since 2010, the Agency has made substantial progress in developing an internal culture supporting recreational fisheries that recognizes and values recreational fisheries and fishermen. Substantial commitments of staff, time, and budget have led to regular productive dialogue at the national and regional levels and have facilitated action on important issues such as barotrauma and data collection, and helped create a culture supportive of recreational fishing. Most recently, in February 2015, we established a formal National Saltwater Recreational Fisheries Policy.

This implementation plan is not an endpoint for our work with the recreational community; it is an additional waypoint on the journey to continually improve stewardship. Through this implementation plan and other work, we look forward to continuing constructive dialogue and collaboration with the recreational fishing community to foster, support, and enhance a broadly accessible and diverse array of sustainable saltwater recreational fisheries.

Sincerely,

Eileen Sobeck

NOAA Assistant Administrator for Fisheries
 

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Thanks Steve! It is exciting news to see an emphasis put on recreational fisheries. I am hopeful that in time we will see a shift in management decisions at federal, regional and state levels that reflect the need for quality fishing over maximum harvest practices for valuable sport fish species.
 
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