RE:Saltwater fishing license - your opinions
I am in support of licenses for saltwater angling in Massachusetts. I've recently come to learn that the majority of sport angling for striped bass, and thus the impact thereof - belongs to the bay state. I would gladly pay for the right and privilege to continue to enjoy the fishery, and am also in favor or a tag system for keeper fish (although I elect to kill very few keepers).
BUT - I would like it to be spent differently than the typical MA cash windfall. I won't mention the big dig, MBTA, Mass Pike, or any of those nasty precedents (oops too late). I would like it to fund more than just research but in addition ENFORCEMENT of the license and tag laws, and to fund guys like you to look at the problem from a national level - verses the mismatch of parochial state management disparities that exists today. What a mess! As I said before, in a sick kind of way it's benefit is that it introduces diversity into the population. The problem with this is, it's not based on any correlative theme across regions and governments.
In the end, instead of making it exploitative, we should build a benefit for guides and charter captains for selling and enforcing these laws (however "token" the commission may be). We should also make it very serious for offenders.
To this debate I ask the following two questions:
1) How many times have you been asked by tourists whether a license is needed for SW fishing in MA?
2) How many times have the tourists been surprised about the reply?
1) Many, many, many times.
2) Just as many.
I vote yay.