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January 09, 2012

New website aims to fund legal fight over California's Marine Protection Act process

On January 1, new regulations created through the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) process went into effect in southern California

Time to Let the Moths Fly

When friends take the cheap route on fishing tackle, I like to raise an eyebrow and utter one of my favorite sayings, "Time to let the moths fly."

It conjures up cartoon images of a cheap skate prying out his wallet, which is used so rarely that moths have found its folding money a convenient home.

Another one of my favorite sayings is, "You get what you pay for." This applies to good causes. And one of the most important causes for anglers today is the fight against unreasonable fishing closures, such as those now taking place in southern California ocean waters.

On January 1, new regulations created through the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) process went into effect in southern California, creating dozens of large no-fishing zones which cover hundreds of square miles and close much of the best coastal fishing areas. The MLPA process threatens the future of fishing and its related industries in the state of California.

Yet angles need not sit back and take it. We can fight, and to make it easier for to battle these regulations, the Partnership for Sustainable Oceans (PSO) has launched of a new website,  SaveCAFishing.org to raise awareness of threats to sportfishing access facing all anglers who fish in California.

Leading the fight against the MLPA process, the PSO represents nearly a million anglers and boaters with a goal to maintain and improve conservation of California's marine fisheries and increase the sport fishing opportunities in California.

The PSO is working with several organizations including the United Anglers of Southern California, International Game Fish Association, American Sportfishing Association, National Marine Manufacturers Association and many others to educate the public on these issues and help raise money for the legal fund against the unjustified closures, which are currently being challenged by an ongoing lawsuit filed by members of the PSO.

Developed with the assistance of BDoutdoors, the PSO has launched SaveCAFishing.org to educate the public on the flawed MLPA process and provide an opportunity for all anglers, boaters and anyone interested in a fair and legal process to contribute to the effort to battle these marine closures.             

Anyone interested in contributing to the legal fund can make a big difference by donating as little as $5 each month. To help the fight, anglers are encouraged to visit SaveCAFishing.org and click on the "Donate" section. Here, individuals can contribute $5 or more a month on a recurring basis, or make a one-time donation.

According to the PSO, all proceeds will directly to the legal fund that is working to keep California's healthy and abundance coastal waters open to sportfishing. As an added bonus, donors will receive discounts on fishing tackle and trips.

"The only true hope California's fishing and boating community has left to stop these impendingmarine protected areas from existing in perpetuity is to support our legal effort," said Dave Elm, immediate past chairman of United Anglers of Southern California. "The SaveCAFishing.org website provides a simple, convenient way to support our efforts on an ongoing basis. I challenge all anglers and anyone that supports public access to public resources to donate to our effort to ensure sustainable recreational activities are allowed to continue in California's coastal waters. A simple $5 or more monthly contribution to the legal effort against the MLPA process may be the most important investment anglers can make to ensure the continuation of the sport for current and future generations."

It's time to let the moths fly. Visit SaveCAFishing.org and start making your donations today.