The N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission will meet May 11-13 at the Sheraton Atlantic Beach Oceanfront Hotel, 2717 W. Fort Macon Road, Atlantic Beach.

The meeting is open to the public.

The commission is slated to consider options to allow a commercial hook-and-line fishery for striped bass in the Atlantic Ocean. At its February meeting, the commission directed the N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries to examine a commercial hook-and-line fishery for ocean-caught striped bass to help avoid waste. The directive came after the commission reviewed incidents of dead discards of striped bass in the ocean trawl fishery this winter.

The commission will also hear updates on legislation introduced this session by the N.C. General Assembly. This will include the status of a bill to clarify that the Spotted Seatrout Fishery Management Plan does not fall under a new requirement that all fishery management plans must end overfishing within two years of adoption. The commission will discuss how to proceed with the Spotted Seatrout Fishery Management Plan if the legislation does not pass. The plan does not meet the new criteria.

The meeting begins with a public comment session at 6 p.m. May 11. Anyone who wishes to speak to the commission on a fisheries-related matter may do so then or at 9:15 a.m. May 12. Given time constraints, commission Chairman Rob Bizzell will ask individuals to speak only once, either on May 11 or on May 12, but not during both public comment periods.

The business session of the meeting begins at 9 a.m. May 12 and 8:30 a.m. May 13.

For more information, contact the Marine Fisheries Commission office at (252) 808-8021.

About the Author Hank Sibley Bluewater Yacht Sales

Hank Sibley hsibley@bwys.com Sales Professional Bluewater Yacht Sales Hampton, VA 804.337.1945 (Mobile) 757.788.7082 (Office) 757.723.3329 (Fax)

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