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Guided Duck and Speckle Trout Gillnet Trips

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    Posted: 28 November 2018 at 12:35am

Note on edit- A couple of PMs "liking the joke". Not a joke- my understanding from knowledgeable sources on the water, this is real. You Facebookers check them out and report back. The verbiage is mine (a parody on a travesty)- the FB photos and captions are theirs.

Jump on in and enjoy NC's unlimited coastal resources- It's a "sportsman's" paradise at Paradise Shores. Shoot your ducks then go on a guided net reel trip to land commercial limits of the highly acclaimed speckle trout. See prolific trophy spawners tugging at the lead line as the hydraulic motor winds the entangled gillnet caught fish into the boat. It's a thrill and experience you'll never forget. Bring your grandson or granddaughter to experience this Worldclass adventure.  Why hold yourself to a 4-fish daily recreational limit when our service allows you to keep 75-fish per trip.  If the waters aren't too cool, you might be lucky enough to land a nice Kemp's Ridley or Loggerhead seaturtle. If the waters are freezing, that's perfect duck weather for shooting your limit and then dipnetting cold-stunned trout from the creeks.  Whether gillnetting or dipnetting, high-culling will ensure a great photo opportunity back on the dock.  If recent landings are an indicator, you have a good chance of getting your picture taken holding NC's premier prehistoric fish- the Atlantic Sturgeon. Only in NC! No other state on the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts allows these opportunities. Our motto- We're Different- get'm before they're gone. Book now. Call BR-549.








 


Edited by Rick - 28 November 2018 at 12:25pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rick Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 November 2018 at 6:44pm
Enquiring minds that saw this post asked the DMF to look at the situation and reply, they forwarded me the answer, which is shown below-

Sirs,


A Marine Patrol Officer in Pamlico County investigated the circumstances involving the photos you sent earlier today.  The individual that ran the gill net trip was in possession of a standard commercial fishing license and a Coast Guard Captains license.  The boat used had a commercial fishing vessel registration on it as well.  Coastal for hire licenses are licenses for patrons on a recreational trip.  In this case the persons were operating commercially and therefore for hire CRFL license would not apply.  Also, there is no requirement for a commercial fishing operation to land their catch at a dealer or fill out a trip ticket.  The patron’s did pay for a fishing trip and the fish were kept by those patrons as a fruit of the trip.  There was no violation In these circumstances.

 

Please feel free to call or reply.

 

Jason Walker

 

Major, Marine Patrol

 

Headquarters, Morehead City

 

252-808-8133




I now have questions-


  • If the individual paid to be taken on a "guided trout trip" why is that not an activity that falls under a for hire situation?  Was he refunded his payment in lieu of the boat keeping fish- like a Bluefin Tuna trip?

  • Did the MFC ever (probably not) require mandatory reporting of all commercial landings on a Trip Ticket.

  • If the individual paid to go commercial fishing and received fish in return, did he not "buy fish".  Would the person who received the payment for the fish be required to hold a Dealer's license?

I don't see how you can have your cake and eat it too.

  • If money exchanged hands for fish- fish were sold.

  • If money exchanged hands for a trip- it's a recreational for hire event.


The US Coast Guard is very stringent in defining a passenger for hire situation-


SEC. 506. PASSENGER FOR HIRE.

Section 2101 of title 46, United States Code, is amended by inserting between paragraphs (21) and (22) a new paragraph (21a) to read as follows:

"(21a) 'passenger for hire' means a passenger for whom consideration is contributed as a condition of carriage on the vessel, whether directly or indirectly flowing to the owner, charterer, operator, agent, or any other person having an interest in the vessel.."

DESCRIPTION - The determination of what constitutes the carriage of a "passenger for hire" must be made on a case by case basis. This determination is dependent upon the actual operation of a vessel and the flow of consideration as determined by the facts of each case. In general, there needs to be some form of tangible consideration or promise of performance being passed for a "passenger for hire" situation to exist.

SEC. 507. CONSIDERATION.

Section 2101 of title 46, United States Code, is amended by inserting between paragraphs (5) and (6) a new paragraph (5a) to read as follows:

"(5a) 'consideration' means an economic benefit, inducement, right, or profit including pecuniary payment accruing to an individual, person, or entity, but not including a voluntary sharing of the actual expenses of the voyage, by monetary contribution or donation of fuel, food, beverage, or other supplies." Additionally, employees or business clients that have not contributed for their carriage, and are carried for morale or entertainment purposes, are not considered as an exchange of consideration.



It looks like to me if you have a passenger for hire situation you have a recreational charter for hire situation if you're fishing.  I see all kinds of violations here- gear and limit.


People- WAKE UP.  Pull out you wallet, spend a little of your money or have nothing left to spend it on.






Edited by Rick - 28 November 2018 at 7:19pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ray Brown Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 November 2018 at 7:26pm
NC law does not allow for a hybrid trip.  It has to be either a recreational trip or a commercial trip.  Unless the law has changed then DMF is simply once again implementing their personal interpretation of the law.

In the meantime commercial gear that is not owned by the user is being used for recreational purposes and the landings are not reported as commercial even though we know the amounts exceed recreational limits meaning any projected extraction of the number of recs fishing within creel limits is null and void as soon as the "work around" cranks up.   This type of operation is not accounted for either by recreational rules or commercial rules.

This is stereo typical of the "stuff" that NC allows.  I don't know what to say.   No one cares that the intent of laws explained to the public are rarely enforced in NC and the DMF staff is so pro harvest that pro conservation provokes only a smug smile when mentioned.




Edited by Ray Brown - 28 November 2018 at 7:29pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Glacierbaze Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 November 2018 at 10:10pm
I wonder how much better the 'guide' made out by selling his services instead of his fish.  It really is a bizarre interpretation of the law, and the facts. 
"You can never elevate your own character by stepping on someone else's."

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Redfisher Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 November 2018 at 9:12am
Well folks, is this not an opportunity (be it small) to go after the DMF legally?  

It's about time to start launching a public campaign to shame this worthless POS division into the ground.

When that happens, folks will get plenty of my money.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote cnaff Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 November 2018 at 9:19am
Not to mention the specks are a "bycatch"species. This is a not-for-hire, sale of commercial caught fish to a paying client who is over his limit without benefit of a dealer's license, and they targeted fish that must be justified as legal to kill by having a more numerously caught legal target species. Regulatory capture doesn't even describe the explanation of the controlling legal authority. Corruption of the LE officer and his controllers would be a better explanation, although incompetent and stupidly ignorant of the law and its implications would be the likely plea and disposition here IF this ever makes it to court. What would one do to further the interest of conservation in the face of that officer's authoritative excuse for no harm, no foul? The state should have some interest in reining in rogue assessments of legality here, as well. BUT, does anyone of us expect Any additional scrutiny upon this specific and kind of transaction?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote cnaff Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 November 2018 at 9:27am
How about chasintrout's take on this as a resident expert on such matters? Where is the inquisitive voice of Get Bowed Up to help us parse the facts on the ground, as we've read them? Clarification from the august amongst us would be revealing to those who seek truth.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote chasintrout Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 November 2018 at 10:06am
Y’all are just a bunch of sour pusses. Don’t hate the player hate the game. That’s the law and the poor fella is finding a way to still make a buck. Hats off to him.

Edited by chasintrout - 29 November 2018 at 10:07am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rick Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 November 2018 at 10:27am
The Division's interpretation of the "law" is not always accurate. Transfers and Assignments are a good example. The Division willingly violated the Transfer statute for years, even after being told. They are still violating Assignment rules in regard to non-resident holders with dual residency. 

The Transfer violation was based on internal DMF policy designed to keep as many people renewing licenses as possible- a funding benefit to the Division.  Statute was extremely clear.  The violation was clear.

Maybe we need an unbiased set of eyes reviewing this.


Edited by Rick - 29 November 2018 at 2:07pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote cnaff Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 November 2018 at 2:14pm
Thanks for weighing in chasintrout! I thought you would see right through this to the core of things! What I wonder is, now that recs can get their commercial limit of seventy-five trout by hooking up with the right netter in paradise creek, why would the other netters worry with the capricious nature of ex-vessel prices when all they need to make a profit is to line up enough night riders to fill the "charter" fee. I'm sure those guys have the insurance necessary to cover paying passengers. And, for sure, they have all the required safety gear for the extra bodies. I wonder what the silly charter guys will think when they realize the gillnetters out-thought them? I certainly encourage you gillnetters to make your own rules for a robust fishery in your newfound abundance of creatively structuring the new paradigm of sustainable fisheries here in NC. I don't see why anyone could possibly want to stop such industrious work by a client oriented community!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Redfisher Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 November 2018 at 3:07pm
Double-dipping!!!!

Take rec's fishing, get paid, then sell your fish!!!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Get Bowed Up Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 29 November 2018 at 5:54pm
I didn't know this was within the law, is this something done by a lot of people?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BrackishWater Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30 November 2018 at 10:50am

11/29/18 10:07 AM

To: Jason Walker


So, help me understand the distinction. Looks like four guys in one of the pictures with what appears to be 35-40 fish on the dock. They hired this boat to take them gill net fishing, as recreational fishermen, but they are not bound by recreational limits? Because the boat was operating as a commercial vessel even though it was hired by recreational fishermen? If they paid the captain to take them fishing, why are they not bound by recreational limits? Same as holding a RCGFL?

 

Your explanation below seems inconsistent. First you say it was a commercial trip: In this case the persons were operating commercially and therefore for hire CRFL license would not apply. Then you say it was a charter: The patron’s did pay for a fishing trip and the fish were kept by those patrons as a fruit of the trip. If they paid for a fishing trip, then they are clearly bound by recreational limits.

 

Please help me understand so we can better answer the concerns of our members. It is very painful to look at a picture of recreational fishermen sitting on a pile of good size trout!

 

Thanks,

 

David A. Sneed

Executive Director

Coastal Conservation Association North Carolina
A rising tide lifts all boats...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 23Mako Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 December 2018 at 12:28pm
Any update on this from DMF?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rick Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 December 2018 at 12:59pm
I don't think we can expect an update from the Division.  Maybe the Commission will take it up in February.

This really opens all kinds of doors- flounder gigging being one.  Most of the recreational flounder gigging guides hold SCFLs.  All that I know have held recreational charters to a rec limit.  According to DMF in the letter above, those guides can take a paying recreational gigging customer on a trip, gig unlimited quantities and it is legal for the customer to retain all the landings for personal consumption and not report a single pound on a trip ticket.

What a can of worms... 

I truly am disgusted with this whole mess.  Only in NC, because "we're different".  SOSDD










Edited by Rick - 06 December 2018 at 1:56pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BrackishWater Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 December 2018 at 2:41pm
DMF is sticking with their legal interpretation that it is a commercial trip because they are using commercial gear. They forget the clause “in the taking of fish for sale.”

I’m with Rick, only in North Carolina.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lcg8978 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 December 2018 at 3:22pm
I'm with Rick.. Interesting can of worms this one opens. All of the gigging charters I have seen stick to the rec limit, although the customer may end up taking home the guide's limit as well (pretty typical on rod and reel charters too). They all hold SCFL and gig commercially, and run gigging trips to supplement that income. It seems to me like allowing your charters to keep more than a rec limit would be bad for business in the long term, as you're leaving less fish in the water for another day, and you don't get paid based on how many fish the clients take home anyways.

To be completely fair, I wouldn't care what they do with the fish after they were legally harvested IF they are required to submit trip tickets for all harvest (not just sales) above rec limits. I also would have no issue with required reporting of all harvest for recs if the same applied to commercials.


Edited by lcg8978 - 06 December 2018 at 3:25pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote j.willis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 December 2018 at 3:23pm
Gigging is an type of commercial gear use. Therefore, by DMF's logic, recreational gigging guides can legally take an unlimited number of  flounder for their clients.

Wonder if those guides know this? Would certainly make their guided trips more desirable than before now- especially from an economics standpoint/cost per pound of flounder meat.

Go for it.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ray Brown Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 December 2018 at 5:42pm
JWillis….that kind of logical thinking merely exposes the illogical NC attitude that has slowly but surely destroyed our fisheries.

Connell Purvis, former DMF Director, was the most honest of them all that I have met.  He sat in front of an estimated 900 people in New Bern and quietly and articulately said that the DMF allowed things in our waters based on economic return within the net based fishery industry.   He made no bones about it.

When it was pointed out that the recreational industry was much more lucrative to NC than the net based or trawl based fishing industry in NC, he simply said that his charge was for those who made a living directly from the water.

Until NC decides who they manage for and write out specifics on what they are trying to accomplish then NC will languish as we go forth with the idea that we manage for "sustained fisheries".

We know that "sustained fisheries" in NC often means "sustained harvest" even if the core biomass is not sustained.

We do understand NC logic however from past experience.  If curbing back on rec gigger guides would in some way lead to curbing commercial net based harvest in some way then the rec giggers will be allowed to do what you suggest.   In NC, at least in coastal waters, managing the resource has never been the objective.  It's all about facilitating harvest for money......and it still is!

It is time.....I'm well again, (I hope).  Forget what I've said in the past in some kind of strange personal need to compromise.....we need a complete net and trawl ban in NC to protect the resource and no one should feel the need to apologize for that goal or determination.




Edited by Ray Brown - 06 December 2018 at 5:44pm
Shrimp trawling never stops in Pamlico Sound. It just pauses on the weekend so crabs can remove the dead and dying from the battlefield.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote kshivar Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 December 2018 at 7:44pm
Yes Ray I bet most of us agree on that. The Legislature ain’t gonna do it and DMF sure isn’t gonna push it. I believe a class action lawsuit joined by thousands might at least get the ball rolling. The State will never defend such until conclusion. They always look to settle for a number of reasons. They can’t/won’t defend for too long.
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