This is a publication of the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council pursuant to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Award No. NA17FC1052.

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RELEASE: IMMEDIATELY
CONTACT: RICHARD L. LEARD

NOAA LAW ENFORCEMENT AND GULF COUNCIL TO HOLD A WORKSHOP ON VIOLATIONS OF CLOSED SHRIMPING AREAS IN SOUTH FLORIDA

Tampa, Florida - November 2, 2001 - The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Law Enforcement Office and the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council (Council) will host a workshop for shrimp fishermen and dealers/processors to review the history of violations in the Tortugas Shrimp Closure and Southwest Florida Seasonal Trawl Closure. The primary purpose of the workshop is to advise industry representatives that violations have increased in these closed areas and other closed areas in state waters and to discuss the penalties that are levied for such violations. NOAA Enforcement representatives and perhaps other enforcement officers will review planned enforcement efforts for the upcoming season that generally begins in December. These officers as well as a Council staff representative will also be available to answer any questions regarding enforcement or management efforts.

The joint NOAA Enforcement and Council meeting will be held November 28, 2001 from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Bayou La Batre Community Center, Padgett Switch Road, Bayou La Batre, Alabama 36509. A copy of the agenda can be obtained by calling the Council office at 813-228-2815.

The meeting is open to the public and physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to the Council office by November 21, 2001.

The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council is 1 of 8 regional fishery management councils that were established by the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act of 1976, as amended. The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council prepares fishery management plans, amendments, and other regulatory actions that are designed to manage fishery resources in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of the U.S. Gulf of Mexico. NOAA enforcement, the U.S. Coast Guard, and state enforcement agencies have enforcement authority for such regulations.

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