skip to main content | skip to footer
North Carolina Department of Environment Quality

NC Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Marine Fisheries - 2009 Rulebook

Marine Fisheries

A New Look for the Rulebook

By Kelly Odom
Fish Eye News
Archive: July 2009

North Carolina’s new saltwater fishing rulebook is bigger and better than in year’s past.

The North Carolina Rules for Coastal Fishing Waters 2009 includes numerous revisions from the 2007 version, all designed to make the book easier to use.

“Once people get use to the format, we feel the rulebook will be much easier to use,” said Catherine Blum, chairperson of a Division of Marine Fisheries Rules Index Working Group.

The rulebook is a collection of state rules and statutes that govern fishing activities in coastal and joint fishing waters. It is published biannually by the N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries.

The intricate nature of marine fisheries regulations coupled with amendments made over decades had complicated the rulebook to the point that it was hard to understand.

The idea for improving the rulebook came about in the fall of 2007 while DMF employees were updating an Interjurisdictional Fishery Management Plan, through which the state adopts, by reference, federal and interstate fishing regulations.

Instead of repeating the same rule numerous times, they decided to remove specific restrictions for each species and place them all under general proclamation authority, allowing the DMF director to change the regulations as necessary to comply with federal laws.

At this point, it became clear that other measures could be taken to simplify the rulebook, though the actual rules could not be changed.

The working group labored 1 ½ years. They added an introduction that lists all the different agencies that take part in helping regulate our fisheries resources. It explains what a proclamation is and gives several Web site addresses that fishermen can go to for further research.

The group expanded the index from two pages to 12 and organized it under five major headings – gear, lease, license, permit and species – to guide the user.

“A person may know they need a license, but not exactly which one,” Blum said.  “They can look under the heading “license” and scan the entire list of licenses that the division sells and find what license they are looking for.”

At the request of the Marine Fisheries Commission, the group also added a diamond symbol to certain species indicating that the fish falls under proclamation authority. It means there may be a proclamation in place with additional regulations. It does not necessarily mean there is a proclamation in place.

DMF started handing out the new rulebook in April, as commercial fishing license sales began.

The current rulebook is available online at http://portal.ncdenr.org/web/mf/commercial-fishing.

/fen-07-09

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

NCDMF logo

38337 FEEDBACK

Your input is valuable to us. Please send us your feedback.

What type of feedback would you like to send?*

Ask a Question Report a Problem Have a Concern Make a Comment

(If you would like us to respond please include your phone or e-mail.)

Your Question has been sent. Thank you!

An internal server error prevented Your Question from being sent.
Please try again later, or call Toll-Free (877) 623-6748 for immediate assistance.

Please complete all highlighted items

Your Problem has been sent. Thank you!

An internal server error prevented Your Question from being sent.
Please try again later, or call Toll-Free (877) 623-6748 for immediate assistance.

Please complete all highlighted items

Your Concern has been sent. Thank you!

An internal server error prevented Your Question from being sent.
Please try again later, or call Toll-Free (877) 623-6748 for immediate assistance.

Please complete all highlighted items

Your Comment has been sent. Thank you!

An internal server error prevented Your Question from being sent.
Please try again later, or call Toll-Free (877) 623-6748 for immediate assistance.

Please complete all highlighted items

*If you are a DENR employee with an I.T. issue, please submit a DOTS ticket.