Keep America Fishing

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Process to Close Sportfishing in California Nearing Critical Final Vote

Send in your comments to the Fish and Game Commission prior to the December 15-16 meeting asking for the suspension of the South Coast implementation process

The Situation

During its upcoming meeting, the California Fish and Game Commission could vote to enclose approximately 15 percent of southern California’s coastal waters within marine protected areas (MPAs), including many of the most popular fishing spots, under the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) process. This critical vote comes at a time when concerns about the MLPA process continue to escalate. A recent court ruling validates long-held concerns about the secretive ways in which the groups implementing the MLPA have been making decisions. The meeting is being held December 15-16, in Santa Barbara.

The MLPA process has been plagued by numerous issues which have not been resolved, including:

• The lack of a transparent and open decision making process
• Inadequate resources for enforcement and biological monitoring
• A process that side-steps a science-based fisheries management approach that clearly identifies the 
threats to California’s marine environment

Touted as “ecosystem protection,” the MLPA only targets recreational fishing and its significant economic contributions to California’s economy all the while ignoring the litany of significant threats to California’s oceans, such as sewage outfalls and storm water runoff, agricultural chemicals and other pollutants, ocean acidification, ocean side development and once-through cooling.

The Department of Fish and Game estimates that the MPA regulations will cost California’s taxpayers $40 million annually for enforcement and biological monitoring – resources that the state simply does not have. With a current deficit of $26 billion, California cannot afford to adopt costly measures that will only work to limit recreational fishing access which provides employment for 20,000 Californians.

How You Can Help

Given the numerous serious concerns surrounding the process, please send the message below to the California Fish and Game Commission urging them to suspend the South Coast MLPA implementation.  

Visit™ for more information on the MLPA.
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