by Hunter Dawkins
At the Tuesday morning monthly Commission of Marine Resources (CMR) in Biloxi, the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources (MDMR) Executive Director Joe Spraggins discussed national interests in bringing Members of Congress and state legislators to Mississippi to view and understand the effects of the Bonnet Carre Spillway.
After going through employees and procurement updates, Spraggins addressed a penalty matrix the agency has been working on that was finished and ready for a notice of intent.
CMR voted 3-1 with one commissioner briefly absent to establish administrative actions on penalty procedures for fishermen.
Office of Marine Patrol Chief Keith Davis mentioned numerous citations on red snapper (as the season has been closed by the MDMR), fishermen without any licenses, and a few undersized speckled trout. The size is require to be above fifteen inches.
Davis expressed a need for the CMR to attempt to reach out to local legislators for setting a new parameter stopping the sale of recreational fish to local restaurants or vendors. Spraggins followed this by stating that MDMR would be hosting a legislative forum on December 6.
In other actions, the commission tabled the language set up to enforce regulations on Atlantic Tarpon for commercial use, unanimously approved regulatory changes of profitable shark fishing, and forfeited the Charter For-Hire reporting program.
The next meeting is scheduled for the third Tuesday of the month at 9am in the Bolton Building.