Skip to main content

RFA keeps up fight for fishing issues

Kudos to the Recreational Fishing Alliance for voicing dismay over the latest appointments to the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council, calling the process used to select appointees a clear violation of the spirit and intent of the Magnuson-Stevens Act.

RFA’s tireless executive director, Jim Donofrio, has said his organization was frustrated by the recent appointments to the MAFMC. “Specifically, there has been a complete lack of consultation or input sought from the traditional recreational fishing stakeholders," charges Donofrio. Moreover, he cites federal fisheries law that provides a state’s governor must consult with representatives of the state’s commercial and recreational fishing interests regarding the appointment of state representatives to fishery management councils.

In the case of four new appointees to the MAFMC, two represent the states of Virginia and New Jersey while two other new members come from New York and North Carolina. The appointments should cause a justifiable uproar in the fishing community because the representatives from Virginia and New Jersey replaced incumbent representatives from the recreational fishing community, while the New York appointee removed a commercial sector seat.
"The lists sent to Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke by the Governors of New York, New Jersey and Virginia included individuals that are completely unknown to the mainstream recreational and commercial fishing communities in these states," Donofrio explained. “It is glaringly apparent that traditional stakeholders were excluded from state level deliberations regarding these appointments," he added.

RFA is now actively pushing to head off similar debacles in future appointments. Donofrio is calling on Secretary Locke to implement a plan requiring governors, prior to submitting the names of possible appointees to the Secretary, disclose the prospective list in the state’s register for public review and comment for a minimum of 20 days. The result would be Governors' lists sent to the Secretary that have been fully vetted at the state level by representatives of the recreational and commercial fishing communities. That, fires Donofrio, is what federal law simply requires!

By every measure, fishing remains the single biggest use of our industry’s products. It is vital, then, that the rights of anglers are represented and protected. Specifically, RFA does a great job of safeguarding the rights of saltwater anglers. Dealers who have a vested interested in saltwater angling should support the work of RFA. For instance, a letter to Secretary Locke calling for a more transparent appointment process for fishery councils would be a good start. Joining RFA would be better.

For information: call 888-JOIN-RFA or go to the Web site:



Volvo Penta Reports Q4, FY22 Results

Net sales of $470 million for the quarter were a 33% increase compared to the prior year period.


DEALERS: Are You Improving the Service Experience?

Our monthly Pulse Report survey asks this and other questions about your dealership. Take the survey here.


NMRA Sets Scholarship Deadline

Students pursuing education in the marine trades can apply for the National Marine Representatives Association awards until April 1.


Marine Products Reports Record Q4

The builder of Chaparral and Robalo boats reported net sales were up 42% for the quarter and 28% for fiscal year 2022.


Shurhold Appoints COO

Forrest Ferrari has years of management, business development, IT and quality-assurance experience.


RBFF, Pure Fishing Partner for a First Catch Center

Pure Fishing will equip a mobile trailer with tackle and gear to bring fishing experiences to areas of South Carolina where participation is low.


An Oft-Overlooked Sales Opportunity

A recent report from the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation showed that women comprise 37% of all anglers. If you haven’t tapped this segment, you’re missing out.

1. 2023 new boat retail outlook

Too Many High-Priced Boats

To wrap up 2022, marine retailers reported lower demand, expressed more negative sentiment and voiced concerns about rising inventory. Boat prices and the economy remained top of mind for dealers in December.

Soundings Nov 2022

New-Boat Registrations Continue to Slide

As the gaudy sales figures from the pandemic continue to return to more realistic numbers, the main segments of the recreational boating industry saw new-model registrations of 4,421 in November, a 30.3% drop from 6,340 during the same time in 2021. .