Campaign Updates

Red Snapper Extension is Not For All

Posted on June 26th, 2014

Source: Local15tv.com

ORANGE BEACH, Ala. (WPMI) Charter boat captains say the newly announced red snapper season extension does not benefit the industry.  

On June 26, Governor Robert Bentley announced that state waters will be open to red snapper fishing every weekend in July.  

“Red snapper fishing is popular along the Alabama Gulf Coast, and the extra fishing days are good for the Gulf Coast economy. I welcome fishermen to take advantage of the additional opportunities for red snapper fishing in our waters”, said Governor Robert Bentley.

 But not all fishermen say they can take advantage.

“On the appearance of it, getting a few extra days of Red Snapper season is good. But because of Amendment 30-B that charter boats have to abide by, we can’t participate in this,” said Charter Boat Captain Ben Fairey.

This extension is only effective for state waters. Most charter boats operate under a federal permit, which means it will still be illegal for them to bring in the red snapper.

“Charter vessels that have a federal for hire charter permit, they must adhere to the stricter requirement. So if federal waters are closed, then state waters are closed to them,” said Major Scott Bannon, Chief Enforcement Officer for Alabama Marine Resources.

This means that the extension is only effective for recreational fishermen. Meaning those that operate their own private boats and are not for business.

Those anglers will have to stay within the three mile state water mark, as federal authorities can issue citations and make arrests for those who pass that.