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Marine Fisheries - 12 2016 NR Archives

Marine Fisheries

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News Release Archives — December 2016


Release: Immediate
Contact: Patricia Smith
Date: Dec. 22, 2016
Phone: 252-726-7021

North Carolina Commercial Fishing Resource Funding Committee
meeting rescheduled

MOREHEAD CITY — A meeting of the North Carolina Commercial Fishing Resource Funding Committee has been rescheduled to noon on Jan. 4, 2017 at the Department of Environmental Quality’s Washington Regional Office, 943 Washington Square Mall, Washington.

The meeting was rescheduled due to an anticipated lack of the required number of attendees for the original Dec. 28 meeting date.
The committee will consider terms for a memorandum of understanding with the Marine Fisheries Commission, options for spending from the fund, and any additional related issues.

The Commercial Fishing Resource Funding Committee is charged with deciding how to spend money from a fund receiving partial proceeds from commercial fishing license sales.

In 2014, the N.C. General Assembly approved a fee increase for six commercial fishing licenses. The fee increase began in fiscal year 2015-2016. Under the law, proceeds from the increased fees goes into a Commercial Fishing Resource Fund.

The fund pays for observer coverage to fulfill the state’s obligations under incidental take permits for sea turtles and Atlantic sturgeon under the federal Endangered Species Act. Without the incidental take permits, the state’s gill net fisheries must close.

Any additional money from the fund is to be used for projects to develop and support sustainable commercial fishing in the state. Spending from the fund must be approved by the Marine Fisheries Commission and the Funding Committee, which is made up of six commercial fishing representatives.
The Marine Fisheries Commission has delegated its funding decisions to a Marine Fisheries Commission Commercial Fishing Resource Fund Committee comprised of members of the commission holding the three commercial fishing seats.

The meeting is open to the public. An agenda can be found here.

For more information, contact Beth Govoni, Grants Program Manager with the Division of Marine Fisheries, at 252-808-8015 or Beth.Govoni@ncdenr.gov.

nr-96-9066


Release: Immediate
Contact: Patricia Smith
Date: Dec. 21, 2016
Phone: 252-342-0642

Jason Walker promoted to Marine Patrol major

MOREHEAD CITY — With more than 18 years as a Marine Patrol officer, Jason Walker knows what he wants for those under his command.

“In today’s social climate, where you see such a negative attitude toward law enforcement, I want the Marine Patrol to be known as trustworthy and approachable,” Walker said.

He is now in the position to further this goal.

Walker, most recently captain of the Wilmington Marine Patrol District, received the golden oak leaves of a major in a pinning ceremony today at the N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries Headquarters in Morehead City. He replaces Dean Nelson, who was promoted to Marine Patrol colonel in August.

The major is second-in-command in Marine Patrol ranks and supervises all Marine Patrol field operations for the state.

Walker said he plans to improve the Marine Patrol’s image by making public service a priority.

“I want to evaluate how to best locate the Marine Patrol’s assets to best serve the public’s interest, partner with local agencies to improve search and rescue operations, prioritize education with our enforcement officers and education teams and emphasize fair and equal enforcement of our laws and rules.”

Nelson said he was not surprised by these areas of emphasis.

“This focus on integrity and work ethic is not just a career goal, it’s an extension of the kind of person Walker is,” Nelson said. “Jason is one, when he tells you something, you can bank on it.”

Walker, 41, began his career with Marine Patrol in March 1998 as a patrol officer in Beaufort County, after graduating from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington in 1997 with a degree in Criminal Justice.

Three years later, he moved to Southport. He stayed in Southport until 2007, when he was promoted to sergeant in Hyde and Dare counties. In 2008, Walker moved back to the southern coastal area, first as a sergeant in Pender and Onslow counties, then back to Southport. He was promoted to captain in November 2013.

Walker grew up in Rockwell and graduated from East Rowan High School in 1993.

Contact Walker for comments at 252-808-8133 or Jason.Walker@ncdenr.gov.

Download a high resolution photograph of Walker and his pinning ceremony here.

nr-95-2016


Release: Immediate
Contact: Patricia Smith
Date: Dec. 20, 2016
Phone: 252-726-7021

Public hearing scheduled on proposed shellfish leases in Carteret County

MOREHEAD CITY — The North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries will hold a public hearing on proposed shellfish bottom and water column leases in Carteret County at 6 p.m. on Jan. 18 at the Division of Marine Fisheries Central District Office, 5285 U.S. 70 West, Morehead City.

Rebekah Williams of Beaufort has applied to lease approximately 3.15 acres of water bottom and water column in the Newport River for a shellfish aquaculture operation.

Samuel Boyd of Morehead City has applied to lease three contiguous areas, approximately 4.85 acres, 4.83 acres and 4.49 acres, of water bottom and water column in Bogue Sound.

The Sandbar Oyster Company, operated by Niels Lindquist, of Morehead City, has applied to lease approximately 3.50 acres of water bottom and water column in Mossy Shoal in North River, 3.81 acres of water bottom and water column in Muddy Bay in the North River Marshes and 4.8 acres of water bottom and water column in the Newport River.

Maps of the proposed leases are available here.

The public may comment on the proposed leases at the meeting or in writing until 5 p.m. on Jan. 17. Written comments should be submitted to the Division of Marine Fisheries, P.O. Box 769, Morehead City, N.C. 28557.

The application file and biologist report for the proposed leases are available for inspection weekdays between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. at the Division of Marine Fisheries Headquarters Office, 3441 Arendell St., Morehead City.

For more information, contact Steve Murphey, Habitat and Enhancement Section chief, at 252-808-8046 or Steve.Murphey@ncdenr.gov.

nr-94-2016

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N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries • 3441 Arendell Street • Morehead City, NC 28557 • 252-726-7021 or 800-682-2632

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