Monday, March 11, 2013

Council Seeks New Advisors

Ever want to give the Gulf Council some advice?

Not take a long walk off a short pier kind of advice but actually directly sharing your knowledge of the fishery with the Council.  Would you be interested in reviewing  documents and making suggestions before Council votes on anything? Would you be interested in lending your perspective to the Council? That is exactly what the Council is asking you to help with.

The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council is responsible for making decisions on a wide range of fishery management issues.  Trapping spiny lobster in South Florida, long lining for tilefish in deep water, spearing amberjack near oil platforms, and catching red snapper on a fly rod are just a few examples of the array of fishing activities that take place in the Councils jurisdiction.  While each voting Council member is selected to serve because they have personal experience, expertise, and interest in the Gulf fisheries, it is nearly impossible for a single person to be an expert in all aspects of Gulf of Mexico fishery management.

Fortunately, the Council system was designed to incorporate the expertise of all sorts of people to ensure a well-rounded understanding of each component of the fishery. Along with encouraging public comment at every step of the process, the Council relies upon advisory panels and scientific committees to provide advice on a variety of issues. 

The advisory panels are populated with people like you; recreational and commercial fishermen, for-hire captains, seafood dealers, members of non-governmental organizations, scientists, and concerned citizens.

The Council is currently recruiting applicants to serve on the following advisory panels:

·     Coastal Migratory Pelagics
·      Coral
·      Data Collection
·      Florida/Alabama Habitat Protection
·      Mississippi/Louisiana Habitat Protection
·      Texas Habitat Protection
·      Outreach and Education
·      Red Drum
·      Red Snapper
·      Reef Fish
·      SEDAR NGO
·      Shrimp
·      Spiny Lobster
Advisory panel positions are unpaid, but travel expenses are reimbursed.

The Council is also looking for economists, biologists, sociologists, and natural resource attorneys who are knowledgeable about the technical aspects of the fisheries to serve on the following Scientific and Statistical Committees:

·      Standing
·      Socioeconomic
·      Coral
·      Mackerel
·      Red Drum
·      Reef Fish
·      Shrimp
·      Spiny Lobster
·      Ecosystems Management

Depending on the current management issues, panels and committees meet up to 4 times a year. Appointments last for two years.

If you’re interested in serving on an advisory panel or scientific committee now is the time to apply.  Send us a resume or description of your qualifications along with a letter that details which panels or committees you’re interested in.

Fax: 813-348-1711
Mail: 2203 N. Lois Ave. Suite 1100
           Tampa, FL 33607