The N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission is accepting
public comment on five recommended changes to the commercial fishing
license structure it plans to further discuss at its February meeting.
“Nothing here is etched in stone,” said commission Chairman Sammy Corbett.
A committee made up of three commission members
voted yesterday to recommend the full commission begin deliberations
with the following proposed requirements for holding a Standard
Commercial Fishing License:
- Must have 50 percent of earned income from the
Trip Ticket Program as in the Fisheries Reform Act of 1997. There is
already a statutory precedent for a commercial fisherman in the
Fisheries Reform Act.
- A fisherman must have 36 trip tickets per year.
- To address crew issues for those who do not
have trip tickets, but are bona fide commercial fishermen as crew or
any commercial fishing interest in North Carolina or outside the state,
proof of income of $10,000 or more per year. The proof of income should
come from a commercial fishing operation, business, etc. doing business
in North Carolina.
(The commission can decide if items 1, 2 and 3 are stand alone or a combination thereof.)
- Inactive Standard Commercial Fishing Licenses
that do not have any of the above with a three-year running average,
would go back into a special pool and these licenses may be reissued to
the original holder subject to commitment to 1, 2 and/or 3 above
without going through the Eligibility Pool.
- Create a Heritage Standard Commercial Fishing
License that families may want to maintain that are inactive. The
license may be maintained for $100 per year and may be reissued one
time to a family member without going through the Eligibility Pool or
any of the 1, 2 and 3 requirements listed above. If the reissuance of
the license is not wanted, a one-time fee of $100 will retire that
The proposals would require legislative approval.
Members of the public wishing to comment on the
proposals may do so during the regular comment period at the Feb. 14-15
commission meeting at the Blockade Runner Beach Resort, 275 Waynick
Blvd., Wrightsville Beach. The public comment period will begin at 6
p.m. Feb. 14.
The public may also comment in writing after 8 p.m. today to [email protected] or to:
Commercial Licenses Comments
N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries
Marine Fisheries Commission Office
P.O. Box 769
Morehead City, N.C. 28557
Written comments must be received by Feb. 9.