As many of you know, SAC spent the last two years working very hard at regaining your fleet fishing access to 60 fathoms of depth.
We are very happy to announce that the council voted to approve in the 2015-2016 specifications cycle to permit fishing to the 60 fathom RCA lines.
We expect an announcement from the council detailing when this will take place around March 1, 2015. We will provide updated information as it is received.
The council was very impressed with the fleet’s efforts and growing commitment to the use of descending devices, which was imperative in this decision. Ken Franke testified SAC’s position and presented NOAA’s most recent video on collaborative barotrauma research , which featured volunteer anglers and NOAA researchers.
We would like to extend a generous thank you to Jaime Diamond, from The Stardust, who made the trip down from Santa Barbara to Garden Grove to present to the council her rationale for opening up to 60 fathoms.
This is a prime example of your positive efforts influencing management decisions that benefit all. Our future access to 60 fathoms is contingent on the continued use of descending devices.
So remember, please use your descending devices, record that usage in your log books, and make sure any bloated rockfish are safely returned back to depth!
We would like to thank the PFMC, SAC representatives on those committees, and the DFW for their help in seeing this come to fruition.