Almost A Member
Jun 3, 2008
Temecula, California,USA
Art Hill
Champion 188 Elite/Mercury 200 H.P.
<TABLE cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0 border=0><TBODY><TR><TD vAlign=top>Hi All,

Please take action, post everywhere and send out to all your friends and family.


Wendy Tochihara

&#65279; <STYLE></STYLE>Please post and forward everywhere!!

Vern Goehring
CA Fisheries Coalition
916-444-8195 Fax

To Everyone Concerned With The Threat of MPAs

Friendly State Senators (Senators Florez, Ducheny and Hollingsworth) share our concerns and are interested in pursuing a Legislative review of the MLPA process and the creation of MPAs. To do so they need the support and permission of the leader in the Senate, President proTem Steinberg. MPA advocates are pressing him to stop any investigation. It is critical that everyone contact Senator Steinberg with the following message: CALL his office and FAX it to his office also (see below for numbers).

April 1, 2009
The Honorable Darrell Steinberg
President Pro Tempore
State Capitol, Room 205
Sacramento, CA 95814

Dear Senator Steinberg:

The Marine Life Protection Act process requires oversight by the Legislature to ensure compliance with the law. I urge the Senate to exercise its oversight authority to investigate the numerous conflicts-of-interest in the MLPA process; the lack of funding to adequately carry out the program; and the inequitable single focus on fishing to fix the ocean. Further, I urge the Senate to investigate the cost of implementing the MLPA in light of California’s unprecedented budget shortfall. Without funding for science, monitoring and enforcement, huge sections of the ocean will be closed to fishing forever. This will unnecessarily impact the economy of coastal businesses and seafood consumers at the worst possible time in this terrible recession.
Thank you for considering my views.
City, CA zip
Phone number

Please call Senator Steinberg's office with this message and also print it out and Fax it today! His numbers are:
Phone – 916-651-4006
FAX - 916-323-2263

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State Senate Majority Leader Dean Florez To Investigate MLPA Funding
By Ed Zieralski
March 29, 2009, 12:43 p.m.
It's just a guess, but Resources Secretary Michael Chrisman and Fish and Game Commissioner Michael Sutton soon may be sweating in their seats while being grilled by state senators over Sutton's alleged conflicts of interest and the funding of the Marine Life Protection Act.
Sen. Dean Florez, a Democrat from Shafter, is a powerful man, and it's not nice to try and dupe powerful men.
Florez is the state Senate Majority Leader and also recently was named the Democratic caucus chairman of the new budget oversight committee. Considering the state's dire financial situation, that is one very important job that Sen. Florez has taken. He'll be in charge of reaching into the state's wallet for funds, and he's going to want to know what is worthwhile and what isn't. And right now he's asking probing questions about the Marine Life Protection Act that calls for a statewide network of marine protected areas and no fishing zones off California .
Florez joined other state senators such as Sen. Denise Moreno Ducheny (D-San Diego) and Sen. Bob Dutton (R-Rancho Cucamonga) in the search for answers about the MLPA process and its funding. California Fish and Game Commissioner Dan Richards of Upland initiated the questions months ago when he asked the Department of Fish and Game to provide a detailed analysis of the costs of potential fishing closures off the coast of California .
Commissioner Richards now has been joined by these key state senators who want to know how this fisheries Act, which was passed in 1999, went from potentially costing the state $250,000 a year to a projected cost of $30 million to $40 million a year once all the marine protected areas are in place. Thus far, closures are in place off the Central Coast , and the environmental impact report for the North Central Coast was released this week by the Department of Fish and Game. The Fish and Game Commission will vote on those closures later in the year.
Florez' questions surfaced in a big way Saturday night at a Coastside Fishing Club fundraiser in San Rafael . Florez' topic was, according to sources there: "The runaway cost of the MLPA and the special interests running the process."
Florez told the recreational anglers he will call a hearing to look deeply into MLPA process to see why the projected costs went from $250,000 a year to an estimated $35 million per year to run. He told the anglers he has the blessing of Senate President pro Tem Darrell Steinberg (D – Sacramento ) to go forward with the investigation. Florez will call Resources Secretary Mike Chrisman before the Committee and ask him about MLPA funding sources and any potential conflicts of interest.
Florez told the group he wants to know why Commissioner Michael Sutton failed to list his income from the Monterey Bay Aquarium on state Form 700 during the Commission vetting process.
Florez specifically said he wants to find out if Sutton, who is an officer at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, has conflicts of interest regarding the Marine Life Protection Act. Sutton once was an officer in the Packard Foundation, and the Packard Foundation, through the Resources Legacy Fund Foundation, is funding the MLPA process. Thus far, the RLFF has poured over $18 million into the MLPA process to keep it going at a time when state funds are shrinking. The Packard Foundation also gave over $123 million over three years to the Monterey Bay Aquarium, where Sutton works.
Sources close to the MLPA process say Chrisman, Sutton and MLPA Initiative staff, particularly executive director Ken Wiseman, are growing increasingly nervous about questions about Sutton's conflicts of interest and the funding of the process.
Sources say Wiseman has resorted to calling key members of the South Coast Stakeholders Group, which is in the process of forming fishing closures off Southern California , and has asked that they tone down their criticism of the funding and the process.
Chrisman and Sutton have both gone on record saying it's not important that the money isn't there to fund the MLPA. Sutton was quoted saying if the Fish and Game Commission waited for money from the Legislature, no fish and game regulations would ever pass.
Meantime, the state is in the throes of deep budget cuts, mandatory furlough days for state employees. It faces a $42 billion deficit that could grow to $50, depending on the outcome of voter propositions set for May.
Sources indicate the Department of Fish and Game has been ordered to complete detailed reports about what has been spent on the MLPA process, what is being spent now and what will it cost to implement all the fishing closures and marine protected areas once this process is complete.
The DFG reported back to the Commission at Commissioner Dan Richards' request earlier on the estimated costs of the entire MLPA, and that's how the figure of $30 million to $40 million was reached. That money would cover the necessary scientific monitoring, law enforcement and public outreach.
All this for a DFG that recently had to stock sub-catchable trout, some with parr markings, in Southern California and Eastern Sierra waters because it couldn't afford trout food at its hatcheries.
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