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Fishing for $

A week ago on September 22nd, Southold Town Trustee Dave Bergen posted this in our forum:

Jill Doherty, Jim King and I went before the Southold Town Board today to seek their support of our opposition to the new DEC salt water fishing license. For those not aware of it, Governor Paterson signed into law a bill requiring that all salt water anglers must pay for and obtain a salt water fishing license by October 1. Yes, as in next week everyone! While legislative attempts were made to delay the implementation of this bill until January 1, those attempts became stuck in committee up in Albany. So everyone over the age of 16 must have in their possession a salt water fishing license before they drop their lines into the water starting October 1. To make matters worse, while you must pay the full annual fee, the license runs out Dec 31 requiring you to pay the full annual fee and go through the registration process all over again for next year. While we support any program which supports the management of our valuable finfish stocks in the Peconic Estuary, the imposition of a mandatory license with an associated fee is quite simply another form of tax which will cause unnecessary hardship for Southold residents and non-residents who fish our bays. This program as currently designed is simply a money grab by Albany to help fill the financial black hole in the State budget.

We invite you to join us this Saturday September 26 at 10:30 AM at the boat launching ramp at the end of Mattituck Creek, on route 48 for a press conference where we will protest the implementation of this tax, plus demand that Governor Paterson and his general accounting staff be held to the language contained in the legislation which states that all fees raised from this new tax goes directly to support the management of the fishery resources contained in the Peconic Estuary. I hope to see you this Saturday. After all, enough is enough!

Did you go? Southold VOICE Vice Chair John Betsch attended and reports:

Southold Town Trustees, supported by the Trustees from both Southampton and East Hampton, Legislator Ed Romaine, Supervisor Russell and members of the Town Board held a press conference this morning at Mattituck Inlet to protest the concept of the salt water fishing license as it is presently being implemented. The press conference was attended by local residents, representatives of the charter boat and recreational fishing industry, as well as representatives of both Newsday and local press. The conference outlined the initial intent behind federal mandates, the genesis of the NYS legislation, and then the lack of accountability of the monies being generated by this tax as well as actions being taken by both Southampton Trustees and Southold Town.

At this point the license is still needed 10/1 at a cost of $10 for three months, and requiring renewal on 1/1/2010 for another charge.

Our photo shows Southold Town Trustees Dave Bergen and Jill Doherty with Legislator Ed Romaine.

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