Apr 27, 2017

Maine aquaculture - Big changes coming Monday

On Monday, the Maine Legislature holds public hearings on bills promising big changes to Maine's aquaculture laws. Links to the bills below and at the Marine Resources Committee webpage http://legislature.maine.gov/audio/#206 (scroll down to Monday)

Official summary "This bill transfers authority for the licensing of land-based aquaculture from the Department of Marine Resources to the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry."

Official Summary:"This bill amends the law regarding municipal shellfish conservation programs to clarify that the intertidal zone extends from the high-water mark to the extreme low-water mark and that the shellfish conservation ordinances apply only within the intertidal zones of municipalities."

Official Summary "This bill creates an aquaculture license that exempts the holder from certain requirements in law to hold a separate license for the removal, possession, transport or sale of cultured marine organisms and authorizes the holder to remove, possess, transport or sell cultured marine organisms."

Official summary "This bill amends the aquaculture leasing and licensing laws. It removes the prohibition on the provision by the Department of Marine Resources of promotional and marketing assistance to the aquaculture industry. It extends the potential term of an aquaculture lease from 10 to 20 years. It changes the order of preference for lease applications to include in the 2nd position an individual who currently holds a limited-purpose aquaculture license for the area. It provides a process by which a holder of a standard lease could seek an expansion of the lease area by up to 10% once during the duration of the lease without having to apply for a new lease. It places the licensed activities and criteria for limited-purpose aquaculture licenses in separate statutory provisions. It requires a limited-purpose aquaculture license holder to specify if the license is for commercial or personal use and to identify the growing area and current classification of the area. It adds consideration of any risk to public health to the criteria used in determining whether to grant a limited-purpose aquaculture license. It adds to the eligibility criteria for a limited-purpose aquaculture license the completion of any educational courses that may be required by the Commissioner of Marine Resources."

Apr 22, 2017

Maine legislature 4/19/17 public hearing on scalloping bills LD68 & 1380. AUDIO MP3 & testimony

Listen below to speakers at the 4/19/17 public hearing on LD 68   &  LD 1380  "Owner-Operator Requirement in the Scallop and Sea Urchin Fisheries". (Both bills same name)

The two bills would require  scallop  vessels in Maine waters to be operated by their owners. This to prevent domination of the fishery by larger company-owned scallopers. (Written comments on the bill follow audio)

Full Public Hearing 1hr 53min  

individual speakers may not be in same order.) 

Intro by co chair Senator Joyce Maker 4min

Rep Lydia Blume Intros LD 68. 6min 27sec

Co chair Representative Walter Kumiega introduces LD 1380 7min

DMR Commssioner Pat Keliher & Q&A 21min 

Keliher comments only  7min  ** Keliher QA only 13min

Brian Thomas Me Ctr for Coastal Fisheries  8min

Glenn Libby  Port Clyde 3min 41 sec

Togue Brawn 8min 33sec 

Bill Anderson, Trescott 6min 4sec

Gary Libby 3min40sec

Pete Gasperini, Vinalhaven,  5min

Alex Todd 2min  Casco Bay scalloper 

Brian Soper, diver, Harpswell.& QA  9min 30sec
Andrew House, South Bristol, 45sec  

Reggie House 1 min 7sec

Brian Preney, Boothbay, 2min40sec
Jim Ackley, Machias. 45sec

George "Butch" Harris. Eastport 3min 41sec

James West,  Sorrento, 4min 45sec

Doug McLennan, Spruce Head  3min

Kim Tucker Islesboro. Atty repping ME Lobstering Union 8min 44sec

Public Hearing Testimony on Bills  LD 68 & LD 1302
Blume, LydiaMaine State Legislature
Hanscom, JimResident
Keliher, PatrickDepartment of Marine Resources
Olsen, VirginiaDeer Isle-Stonington
Raymond, MaggieAssociated Fisheries of Maine
Sutter, WilliamWiscasset
Thomas, BrianMaine Center for Coastal Fisheries
Tucker, KimMaine Lobstering Union