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Tuesday, July 16, 2024
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Getting Nothing for $5

Dear Source:

Having read Derrick Hill’s well-considered ideas on the lack of “planning” at DPNR when they closed down the fish market in La Reine for maintenance reasons, I couldn’t believe that he said a commercial license in the territory can be had for “less than a hundred dollars a year.” So I decided to do some fact-checking and went to the department’s web site and read the current regulations. Can you believe the annual commercial fishing license is $5.00? I’m dumbstruck.
DPNR estimates that there are about 400 licensed commercial fishermen in the territory. So that’s $2000. Why bother with a license program at all? It must cost more just to print and document each license. With all the fishery issues facing our territory, you would think that someone would at least have in place a system that would generate real industry-driven revenue to conduct research and monitoring, provide suitable enforcement agents and offer educational outreach programs, not to mention maintenance and upkeep of markets and landing areas. For five bucks, you can’t even buy a movie ticket. How can you expect to get a working department that supports our fishermen, their families, and the health of our resources?
Liam Carr

Editor's note: We welcome and encourage readers to keep the dialogue going by responding to Source commentary. Letters should be e-mailed with name and place of residence to source@viaccess.net.

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