Here's an article showing how the EDF-scripted process in our fisheries management is starting to come to light. How nice it would be to get NMFS thugs such as Dr. Roy Crabtree deposed under oath to see how really slimy the whole thing has become. Roy needs to be held accountable for his actions, which is clearly anti-recreational fishing which has resulted in substantial damage to our coastal fishing communities.
I'm also looking forward to the upcoming Sector Separation workshop meeting in Tampa in November. That meeting should be equally revealing regarding the players in the Catch Share/Sector Separation scam - government employees, NGO's, and commercial/charter fishermen who are acting as their pawns.
Sector Separation/Catch Shares have little to do with fish conservation, but in reality is just a profit-motivated scheme to enrich investors while simultaneously denying access to the resource to the average Joe fisherman. The people pushing for Sector Separation/Catch Shares are those who stand to profit from the windfall of government gifting them a portion of OUR natural public resource.
This is in direct violation of the Public Trust Doctrine which states;
As trustee, the state (federal government) has no power to delegate its trust duties and no freedom to transfer trust ownership or management of assets to private concerns.
The environmental.orgs, most notably EDF and PEW have had undue influence on our government regarding fisheries issues in the last few years, and they need to get the hell out of the process.
September 9, 2010
Judge opens door to forced fed testimony on lawsuit
By Richard Gaines Staff Writer Staff Writer
Thu Sep 09, 2010, 11:09 PM EDT
A federal judge Thursday put a lawsuit challenging the Obama administration's New England groundfishery regulatory scheme on a tight schedule, and left the door open to an extraordinary request for discovery that could put top officials under oath to determine if the new system rooted in fishermen's catch shares was honorably chosen.
U.S. District Judge Rya Zobel set Sept. 23 for the filing of motions on the request for depositions, a big add to the suit by New Bedford Mayor Scott Lang and supported by Gloucester Mayor Carolyn Kirk on behalf of the region's two main groundfishing ports.
Zobel also set Feb. 9, 2011, as the hearing date on the suit itself.
The expanded legal action was initiated after months of political efforts and debate within the established regulatory system proved fruitless to the industry, and just days after a small armada assembled off Martha's Vineyard, forming a marine informational picket line courting the attention of President Obama and the national media.
The overall lawsuit alleges that the federal government's Amendment 16, which imposes hard catch limits and diminished allocations on the already strapped fleet, will bankrupt the industry, leaving the fishery to outside investors. Under the catch share system, fishermen working in assigned "sectors" are granted "shares" of a "total allowable catch" for each fish stock, with those shares open for fishermen or investors to buy, sell or trade.
Lang said the unusual request for discovery in an administrative law case was essential to allow the plaintiffs to learn whether influence on the government by green groups with an anti-fishing agenda and a zealous faith in catch shares improperly helped shape the regulatory regimen.
"We don't believe they (the government officials) were honest," Lang said in an interview with the industry news Web site SavingSeafood.com. He has long-contended that Environmental Defense Fund played a pivotal role in the shaping of the re-engineered system.
NOAA administrator Jane Lubchenco was vice chairwoman of EDF when she was nominated by President Obama to take control of the oceans and fisheries. EDF also has a paid senior staffer, Sally McGee, on the New England Fishery Management Council, while the council's chairman, John Papalardo, now heads an organization of Cape Cod fishermen and lobbyists closely allied with EDF and other green groups.
Lang said the best news of the day was the judge's willingness to consider the request for discovery that would allow deposing officials.
"The only win was that the judiciary has begun to look under the hood," said Lang. "They don't follow the law, and the judge is going to find that out."
Kirk said she was encouraged by the judge's effort to take a quick read on the impact of the regulatory system, which has brought consolidation and left many boats tied to the docks due to the small allocations.
"We emphasized the urgency of moving quickly," said Kirk. "Every day that goes by fishing families are being hurt.
(Judge Zobel) was tenacious," Kirk said. "She dogged the lawyers time and again."
Richard Gaines can be reached at 978-283-7000, x3464, or firstname.lastname@example.org.