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Public Notice: Pertaining to Tautog

NOTICE

The Virginia Marine Resources Commission invites public comment on a proposed amendment to Regulation 4 VAC 20-960-10 et seq., "Pertaining to Tautog."

The proposed amendment, described below, would modify the recreational fishing season and possession limit for tautog.

In accordance with 28.2-209 of the Code of Virginia, a public hearing on the adoption of the proposed amendment will be held at 12:00 Noon on Monday, November 23, 1998 at the Virginia Marine Resources Commission, 2600 Washington Avenue, Newport News, Virginia. Written comments on the proposal should be mailed to: Jack Travelstead, VMRC Fisheries Management Division, P. O. Box 756, Newport News, Virginia 23607. Copies of the proposed amendment may be reviewed at the Commission office, Monday through Friday, 8:15 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Persons interested in obtaining a copy of the proposed regulation may call the Commission office at (757) 247-2248.

PURPOSE OF THE AMENDMENT: The purpose of the proposed amendment is to allow for a year-round recreational fishery for tautog while achieving equal conservation and protection of the resource through a lower possession limit. The proposed amendment satisfies the compliance requirement of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission's Tautog Fishery Management Plan.

PROPOSED AMENDMENT:

4 VAC 20-960-45. RECREATIONAL FISHING SEASON AND POSSESSION LIMITS:

A. It shall be unlawful for any person fishing with hook-and-line, rod-and-reel, spear, gig or other recreational gear to possess more than 10 7 tautog. When fishing is from a boat or vessel where the entire catch is held in a common hold or container, the possession limit shall be for the boat or vessel and shall be equal to the number of persons on board legally eligible to fish multiplied by 10 7. The captain or operator of the boat or vessel shall be responsible for any boat or vessel possession limit. Any tautog taken after the possession limit has been reached shall be returned to the water immediately.

B. Possession of any quantity of tautog which exceeds the possession limit described in subsection A of this section shall be presumed to be for commercial purposes.

C. The recreational fishing season shall be closed from May 1-June 30 open through the year.

* * * * * * * *

VMRC DOES NOT DISCRIMINATE AGAINST INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABILITIES. IF YOU ARE IN NEED OF A REASONABLE ACCOMMODATION DUE TO A DISABILITY, PLEASE ADVISE DEBORAH CAWTHON (757) 247-2248 NO LESS THAN FIVE WORK DAYS PRIOR TO THE MEETING TIME AND IDENTIFY YOUR NEED.

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