Stripers Forever Announces Feb 28th Hearings on Three Bills in MA Legislature.
Stripers Forever, a conservation organization advocating coast-wide game fish designation for wild striped bass, advises that three key bills sponsored by legislators will be heard by the Massachusetts Legislature’s Joint Committee on Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture on Feb. 28th at 11:00 A.M. in Room B-1 at the Statehouse Building on Beacon Hill in Boston.
One bill will make the striped bass a game fish and end the commercial fishery for the species in the Commonwealth. A second bill would require the testing of wild striped bass for potentially harmful contaminants and the issuing of warnings if appropriate. The third bill would direct the Commonwealth to manage the wild striped bass for its greatest economic value. “The recreational striped bass catch in Massachusetts waters has dropped by nearly 80% since 2006 and the guiding, tackle shop, and tourist fishing industries are all in a serious decline,” says Brad Burns, President of Stripers Forever. “Massachusetts is an especially important state because the commercial fishery there targets only large, breeding-age, female bass - fish that are vital to the future of the population. We’re killing the best of the best. Conserving these important breeders can turn the population around. But if these big fish continue to be killed off, the quality of the fishery will degrade even further until there will be no worthwhile striper fishing left for anyone.”
Stripers Forever urges everyone concerned with the future of wild striped bass to take advantage of the organization’s free membership by signing up at www.stripersforever.org. All Stripers Forever members will receive updates on the progress of the bills and will have an opportunity to help ensure their passage.
For more information, contact Brad Burns by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.