The Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC), Division of Fish & Wildlife (DFW) will conduct a public hearing (Hearing Docket No.: 2020-R-F-0015) on the proposed revisions to the following regulations: 7 DE Admin. Code 3503 Striped Bass Recreational Fishing Seasons; Methods of Take; Creel Limit; Possession Limit and 7 DE Admin. Code 3504 Striped Bass Possession Size Limit; Exceptions.
The virtual public hearing will be held on Thursday, June 25, 2020, beginning at 6:00 PM; Via WebEx link: stateofdelaware.webex.com/stateofdelaware/onstage/g.php?MTID=e9b3264e1aebb17f61e713ad3853b3149 or by via Phone Teleconference: Dial-in Number: 1.408.418.9388; Event Number: 710 615 638
The mandatory provisions of the Atlantic States Fisheries Commission’s (ASMFC’s) Addendum VI to Amendment 6 to the Atlantic Striped Bass Interstate Fishery Management Plan (FMP) require a coastwide 18% reduction in striped bass removals (landings + discard mortality). The ASMFC adopted specific, prescribed coastwide management measures to meet the required 18% reduction, but these measures are not preferred for Delaware. Delaware developed two management options that were approved by the ASMFC that, if implemented by the Department, would be equivalent to the specific coastwide management measures in Addendum VI. The first option results in a 1.8% reduction in commercial removals and a 20.4% reduction in recreational removals. The second option results in an 18% reduction in commercial removals and an 18.18% reduction in recreational removals. Both options retain the recreational summer slot season (1 striped bass at 20″- 25″ in Delaware River, Bay & their tributaries from Jul 1 – Aug 31), but the two options differ for the recreational fishery as follows:
|Option 1||Option 2|
(not to be equaled or exceeded)
Option 1 is currently in effect due to Emergency Order No. 2020-F-0002, but adoption of either option will ensure compliance with the FMP, as required by the Atlantic Coastal Fisheries Cooperative Management Act (16 USC §§5101, et seq.). The proposed amendment may be inspected at DNREC’s office in-person (by appointment only) located at Richardson & Robbins Building, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901 and online as of June 1, 2020 at regulations.delaware.gov/services/current_issue.shtml
For additional information on this proposed regulatory promulgation, please contact John Clark, DNREC/DFW, 89 Kings Hwy., Dover, DE 19901; by phone at 302-739-9914; or by email at John.Clark@delaware.gov, or visit de.gov/dnrechearings
Please note that live comments will not be accepted during the virtual hearing. Written comment may be submitted to the Hearing Officer via the online comment form at dnrec.delaware.gov/public-hearings/comment-form/, via email to DNRECHearingComments@delaware.gov, or via USPS to the below address. The Department will accept public comment through the close of business on Thursday, July 10, 2020.
Theresa Smith, Hearing Officer
DNREC — Office of the Secretary
89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901