Artificial lobster bait issue being considered by Maine Legislature: LD 527 An Act To Authorize the Commissioner of Marine Resources To Regulate the Use of Artificial Bait in Marine Fisheries.
See bill at http://www.mainelegislature.org/legis/bills/ld_title.asp?ld=527
What's happening: Following the onset several years ago of large scale marketing and use of artificial lobster bait, worry arose among lobstermen about the impact that this change in diet would have on Homarus americanis, the American Lobster. The issue was brought front and center at the 2004 Maine Fishermen's Forum, where some advocated prohibiting artificial bait based on an obscure antilittering law. This was not felt sufficient by the state attorney general. In response to requrests, the Maine Department of Marine Resources drafted the following bill. The bill as presently being considered by the Maine legislature simply empowers the DMR to create rules about artificial bait. It does not define the rules:
LD 527 An Act To Authorize the Commissioner of Marine Resources To Regulate the Use of Artificial Bait in Marine Fisheries.
Be it enacted by the People of the State of Maine as follows:
Sec. 1. 12 MRSA §6175 is enacted to read:
The commissioner may adopt rules to regulate the use of alternative bait in marine fisheries. Rules authorized by this section must be adopted in accordance with the procedures in subchapter 2 and are routine technical rules as defined in Title 5, chapter 375, subchapter 2-A.
This bill authorizes the Commissioner of Marine Resources to regulate the use of alternative bait in marine fisheries.