Daily Fishing and Outdoor Report

Add-to for July 13, 2007:

I wanted to note the proposed development for bayside Holgate. A Holmdel firm wants to build townhouses and a marina on an undeveloped, un-bulkheaded portion of bayside Beach haven Inlet, as Holgate is sometimes called. I’m taking no stance on this proposal at this time – though that could change as various groups get involved. What I have to put forth at this time is a pointed notation that state law demands no net less of public access to the bay. Anything built on the bay must allow an easement along the bay for full public usage. Anything less than that is beyond unacceptable – it’s illegal.

You might recall in Ship Bottom when the land next to Hochstrasser’s was allowed to be stolen away when the borough of Ship Bottom made no effort to enforce state mandates, allowing the developer to ignore the easement requirement of the state. The DEP also dropped the ball in a big way. That area was lost to fishing and crabbing through some absurd assertion that the new owner would build a new bulkhead. So ****ing what? How does building a bulkhead neutralize the public’s right to access the area? It doesn’t. Truth me told, that development could still be contested.

But screw that for now. As for Holgate, any new bayside build-up damn well better account for public access – and a lot of it -- or the state will move in this time. I know whom to call. Just this year, Trenton strengthened that public access statute.

Onto other things:

Below are a couple news wire items: The Congressman Saxton money for Barnegat Bay (for 2008) is seriously important in the face of a constantly filling in Barnegat Inlet. It needs dredged and the money gained for same will make life easier and safer for all who use that inlet, one of the most traversed in the state.

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Federal funding for the maintenance of Barnegat Bay was added to the 2008 federal budget this week, Congressman Jim Saxton (NJ-03) announced today. The 2008 Energy and Water legislation was approved by the House Appropriations Committee Wednesday. The bill, H.R. 2641, is expected to be brought to the House floor early next week.

The President's budget originally included $54,000 for maintenance dredging of the Inlet, and Saxton asked Energy-Water Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Peter J. Visclosky, D-Ind., and Ranking Member David Hobson to add more funds for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers project. Barnegat Bay is now slated to receive $2,054,000.

The inlet has an authorized depth of 10 feet and is dredged several times a year due to severe shoaling. The commercial fishing fleet operates out of three marinas and consists of more than 35 vessels. There are also 15 commercial charter fishing vessels and six head boats. Barnegat is ranked 31st in the nation in commercial fishery landings by value of catch. The dangerous nature of the inlet's current and rapid shoaling requires the authorized depth to provide safe conditions. Without sufficient dredging, there is a high probability of grounding incidents to the many fishermen who depend on safe depths of channels.


From NOAA:

Marine recreational anglers caught more than 37 million spotted seatrout in 2006. Spotted seatrout was the most popular catch among marine recreational anglers in the Gulf of Mexico. The top catches in other regions were striped bass (North Atlantic), summer flounder (Mid-Atlantic), spot (South Atlantic), chub mackerel (Pacific), black rockfish ( Pacific Northwest ), and yellowstripe goatfish (Western Pacific). Anglers took 89 million saltwater trips in 2006, a 5 percent increase from 2005. While anglers are keeping about 20 percent more fish than a decade ago, they are also releasing their catch more often. Of the 475 million fish caught by anglers in 2006, 262 million (55 percent) were released alive.

Americans ate 16.5 pounds of fish and shellfish per person in 2006, a two percent increase over the 2005 consumption figure of 16.2 pounds. Americans consumed a total of 4.9 billion pounds of seafood in 2006. The nation imports roughly 83 percent of its seafood and remains the third largest global consumer of fish and shellfish, behind Japan and China .

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