Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Reminders Regarding the Individual Fishing Quota Programs in the Gulf of Mexico

The following notice from NOAA Fisheries is provided as a courtesy to our subscribers.

CONTACT: Catch Share Customer Support, (866) 425-7627 (option 2, 8am - 4:30pm EST), nmfs.ser.catchshare@noaa.gov
Reminders Regarding the Individual Fishing Quota Programs 
in the Gulf of Mexico
  • NOAA Fisheries is sending these end-of-year reminders to ensure IFQ participants are knowledgeable about end of year restrictions as well as subsequent start of year information. We are also providing additional information on the IFQ system functions and requirements to ensure participants clearly understand how to participate in the program.
  • For further information, IFQ participants can contact Catch Share Support at (866) 425-7627 (option 2) between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Eastern Standard Time (EST), excluding federal holidays.
  • NOAA Fisheries will shut down the Individual Fishing Quota (IFQ) online system for maintenance beginning 6 p.m., EST, December 31, 2017. Dealers and IFQ fishermen are reminded that all electronic transactions for the 2017 fishing year must be completed before this time.  Online IFQ functions will resume at 2 p.m. EST on January 1, 2018.  You may still submit an advanced notice of landing during the 20-hour maintenance window by using your vessel monitoring system or by calling Catch Share Customer Service at (866) 425-7627 (Option 1).  However, only landing transactions completed prior to 6 p.m. EST, December 31, 2017, will count toward your 2017 allocation.  Any remaining allocation in the account at 6 p.m., EST, December 31, 2017, expires and is removed from your account by the system.

  • Please remember that a share transfer is a two-step process requiring the transferor to initiate the transaction and the transferee to complete the transaction. The transferee completes the transaction by accepting the share transfer under the Receive Transferred Shares view.  A share transfer transaction that has not been accepted by the transferee (e.g., pending status) after 30 days from the date the transfer was initiated will be cancelled.  If the share transfer is still desired, the transferor will have to restart the share transfer process.  
  • Please ensure any share transfers are completed before the online system maintenance outage. Any transfers initiated by the transferor but not accepted by the transferee will be canceled and the shares will remain in the transferor's account.
IFQ Share CategoryQuota
Deep Water Grouper1,024,000
Other Shallow Water Grouper525,000
Red Grouper7,780,000
Red Snapper6,312,613
  • The gag and red grouper multi-use allocation percentages may change each year based on the annual catch limit and quotas for red grouper and gag. For 2018, red grouper multi-use allocation will be 3.5% of your total red grouper allocation, while gag multi-use allocation will be 43.6% of your total gag allocation.

  • On January 1, your 2018 allocation will be issued to your shareholder account. To use this allocation to harvest IFQ species, you must transfer sufficient allocation to your vessel account prior to completing a landing transaction.  To transfer allocation to your vessel account, log in to your shareholder account.  On the menu bar, select Allocation, then select Transfer Allocation and follow the instructions.

  • When transferring allocation to another shareholder's vessel account, use the vessel's Coast Guard documentation or state registration number in the search box. Many vessels have similar names and this will ensure the correct vessel receives the allocation.

  • When using the 24/7 call service to report your pre-landing notification, please provide your vessel's Coast Guard documentation or state registration number. This will ensure the pre-landing notification is given for the correct vessel instead of another vessel with a similar name.
  • Please remember that the 24/7 call service is only to report pre-landing notifications. They cannot complete dealer landing transactions or answer any IFQ related questions.  The only way to complete dealer landing transactions is through the online system by logging into the dealer account.  Questions about the IFQ system should be directed towards Catch Share Support (866-425-7627, option 2; M-F 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. EST).

  • When dealers complete a landing transaction, step 4 specifies to select a notification confirmation to link the vessel's pre-landing notification with the landing transaction. However, for a variety of reasons, sometimes there are no notifications to select.  In this case, the dealer must select "No Notification Meets Criteria" to complete the landing transaction.
  • Supplying trip ticket number (step 5) is optional and helps the National Marine Fisheries Service connect the different datasets (i.e., Coastal Logbooks, Trip Tickets, and IFQ). Please remember to include this number during the landing transaction or afterwards using the Update Trip Ticket option under the Landings menu.

  • IFQ fishermen are charged a fee to recover a portion of the costs required to administer, manage, and enforce the IFQ programs. The current cost recovery fee is 3% of the ex-vessel value of the landed fish before any deductions are made for transferred (leased) allocation and goods and services (e.g., bait, ice, fuel, repairs, machinery replacement, etc.).  The dealer collects this fee from the fisherman at the time of landing.  After the end of each calendar quarter, each dealer must submit the cost recovery fees to NOAA Fisheries via the online system.  The dealer has 30 days from the end of the quarter to submit the cost recovery fee.  If the fee is not paid by the end of the 30 days, the dealer account will be suspended until the fee is paid.  The payment schedule is listed below so that dealers may mark their calendars as a reminder.
QuarterCost Recovery Fee availableCost Recovery Fee due on or before
1stApril 1May 1
2ndJuly 1July 31
3rdOctober 1October 31
4thJanuary 1January 31
  • An IFQ account must be related to a Gulf of Mexico commercial reef fish permit to land IFQ species. The same name(s) must be on both the IFQ account and Gulf of Mexico reef fish permit.  Any changes to the name(s) on a permit (e.g., adding or removing a spouse or partner) will separate the permit from the IFQ account.  You must then establish a new IFQ account based on the names on the permit.  Please allow adequate time to establish an IFQ account, as it may take a few days for the new account UserID and PIN to be mailed to you.  For additional information about IFQ accounts and Gulf of Mexico commercial reef fish permits, please review the Frequently Asked Questions on the IFQ Homepage.

  • The online system provides a "Forgot PIN" option to help users retrieve their PINs to log into the IFQ system at any time. To utilize this function, users must have secret questions and an email address set up in their online account.  This can be set up for each Shareholder, Vessel, and Dealer account under the My Account menu.  For additional information about how to set up secret questions and an email address, please review the Troubleshooting Guide on the IFQ Homepage.
About Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council is one of eight regional Fishery Management Councils established by the Fishery Conservation and Management Act of 1976. The Council prepares fishery management plans, which are designed to manage fishery resources within the 200-mile limit of the Gulf of Mexico.

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Apalachicola National Forest prescribed burning today in Liberty County

TALLAHASSEE, Fla., Dec. 12, 2017The U.S. Forest Service is prescribed burning in the Apalachicola National Forest today.

The 1,401 acre prescribed burn will take place in Liberty County west of Highway 65, near Forest Road 103. The burn will improve wildlife habitat, eliminate vegetation build up and reduce the threat of wildfires.
People are reminded that the smoke they may see today and tomorrow in this vicinity is not coming from a wildfire. Motorists are cautioned to drive slowly with lights on while traveling in smoky areas. Drivers should be particularly cautious in areas where prescribed fires have taken place when it is foggy. Morning fog can mix with smoke and decrease visibility further.

This is one of many prescribed burns the Apalachicola National Forest is doing during the 2017 prescribed burning season. Today’s burn is in burn unit 3 (see the Apalachicola’s planned burn map): https://goo.gl/2TZoZL


Florida DEP permit activity for Gulf County

DEP Logo
Florida Department of
Environmental Protection

Bob Martinez Center
2600 Blair Stone Road
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-2400
Rick Scott

Carlos Lopez-Cantera
Lt. Governor

Noah Valenstein

Permitting Application Subscription Service

Subscriber email address: manager@oysterradio.com

  Profile Name: Oyster Radio

Permit: Water - Drinking Water Distribution System General Permit
Location Id: 358462
County: Gulf
Application Number: 358462-002

For further information, please contact the Northwest District permitting office in Pensacola at (850) 595-8300


Friday, December 8, 2017



The Wakulla County Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) is seeking three (3) volunteers to serve a four (4) year term on the Tourist Development Council (TDC).  The TDC was established for the purpose of promoting and facilitating travel to and within Wakulla County for the benefit of its economy, residents and travel/tourism industry. 

State law requires that the TDC membership shall consist of nine (9) members serving four (4) year terms and are appointed by the BOCC.  State law requires that TDC membership be comprised of the BOCC Chair or designated Commissioner; two (2) elected municipal officers; and six (6) members who represent tourism related industries, of these six (6) members, not less than three (3) and not more than four (4) members shall own or operate tourist accommodations, subject to the tourist development tax.

Members must meet the following criteria:
1.    Be an elector of Wakulla County
2.    Represent a tourism industry and shall own or operate a tourist related business.
Interested persons should submit a properly completed application via e-mail to nknowles@mywakulla.com or by mail to Wakulla County BOCC, Attn: Natalie Knowles, P.O. Box 1263 Crawfordville, FL 32327 no later than 5:00 p.m., Friday, December 29, 2017.  The TDC membership application is available on the VISITWakulla.com website or by contacting Natalie Knowles via e-mail nknowles@mywakulla.com or telephone:  850-926-0919, ext. 719.


Gov. Scott: Lifetime Sportsman’s License Cost Reduced for Florida Children and Young Adults

NAPLES, Fla. - Today, Governor Rick Scott signed a proclamation authorizing the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) to offer Lifetime Sportsman’s Licenses for Florida children and young adults at a reduced cost. The license currently costs up to $1,000 but from now through Dec. 31st, the price will be reduced by 25 percent for Florida residents who are 17-years-old and younger. The lifetime license covers saltwater and freshwater recreational fishing, hunting and most associated permits. To view the proclamation, click HERE.

Governor Scott said, “Our state’s natural treasures give families all across the state opportunities to spend quality time together, and I’m proud to reduce the cost of the Lifetime Sportsman’s Licenses for Florida’s children and young adults this holiday season. I encourage Florida’s children and young adults to take advantage of this opportunity to spend time enjoying Florida’s great outdoors.”

A Lifetime Sportsman’s License allows fishing and hunting in Florida for the rest of the license holder’s life, even if that person is no longer a resident of the state.

The license may be purchased online at GoOutdoorsFlorida.com, and at Florida county tax collectors’ offices. Residency must be verified. For more information about a Lifetime Sportsman’s License and this limited time offer, visit http://myfwc.com/license/recreational/lifetime-licenses/.


FWC considers regionally-specific bay scallop open seasons

 The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is considering changes to state bay scallop rules that would create regionally-specific bay scallop open seasons starting next year.

Regionally-specific open seasons would mean the timing of the summer bay scallop season would vary across the allowable harvest area to provide a better scalloping experience for the public and maximize the benefits to various regions.

For some regions, that means having a season that starts later so that scallops are bigger when the season begins and for other areas, that means having a season that starts during early summer to allow for more opportunities for those on summer break.

If approved in February, long-term regionally-specific open seasons would include a July 1st through September 24th season for Franklin County through northwestern Taylor County including Carrabelle, Lanark, and St. Marks.

The state is also considering a very short season for Gulf County next year as they continue work to rebuild the bay scallop population in St. Joe Bay.

If approved in February, the 2018 bay scallop season in St. Joseph Bay and Gulf County would run from August 17th through September 30th.

The FWC will set a long-term season in St. Joseph Bay once the scallop population in that area has more fully rebuilt.

You can Share your input on the proposed season changes by visiting MyFWC.com/SaltwaterComments or by emailing Marine@MyFWC.com. 


FWC approves changes to Greater Amberjack season

 The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission this week approved changes to Gulf greater amberjack season starting in 2018. 

The FWC set the greater amberjack recreational season in Gulf state waters to open May st through the 31st and August 1st through October 31st.

This change is similar to pending changes in Gulf federal waters.

Greater amberjack is overfished and undergoing overfishing, and the season has closed increasingly early in recent years due to federal quotas being met or exceeded.

The new season structure is designed to optimize recreational fishing opportunities in both the spring and fall while minimizing harvest during the spawning season, helping to rebuild the stock.

Greater amberjack is currently closed to recreational harvest in Gulf state and federal waters. State waters will remain closed through April 30, 2018.


Don't miss the Holiday on the Harbor and boat parade of lights this Saturday in Carrabelle

The Carrabelle River will light up for Christmas on Saturday as Carrabelle celebrates its annual Holiday on the Harbor and Boat Parade of Lights.

The event begins at two on Marine Street in Carrabelle where community groups and commercial vendors will sell food, arts and crafts and Christmas items.

Stores in Carrabelle will stay open late so you can do some Christmas shopping- and Santa Claus will listen to childrens’ wishes at the Riverfront Pavilion.

There will also be plenty of activities for the kids including bouncy house, train rides and face painting.

There will be live entertainment on Marine Street throughout the day including Debi Jordan and the Flathead String Band.

Local venues including Fathoms Steamroom and Harry's Bar will also have live music through the day and after the parade.

And once it’s dark enough, the boats will turn on their Christmas lights and parade around the River – the parade ends with a big fireworks show over the river.



FRECKLES is a sweet, smart and affectionate Springer Spaniel mix. She is young, 1-2 yrs old, heartworm negative and will be spayed next week. This little lady will make a wonderful pet for some lucky family. We'd love to see Freckles home for the holidays!

Volunteers are desperately needed to socialize all of our dogs and
cats. We are always looking for people willing to bring one of our
animals into their home to be fostered for various needs. Anytime you
can spare would be greatly appreciated.

Call Karen at 670-8417 for more details or visit the Franklin County
Humane Society at 244 State Road 65 in Eastpoint. You may logon to
the website at www.forgottenpets.org to see more of our adoptable


'Tis the Season of Love ❤ in Mexico Beach

Christmas is one of those times in Mexico Beach that we all look forward to. Our community enjoys the happiness of the holidays and we begin the celebration with our annual Christmas tree lighting ceremony. With carols, cocoa, and that special visit from Santa himself, everyone gets into the holiday spirit. It is a wonderfully simple event that takes the entire community to help orchestrate. We would like to offer a very big thank you to the staff of the El Governor Motel, the staff of the Mexico Beach Welcome Center, and the staff of the city’s Public Works Department for all their efforts in putting this event together.

One magical part of our annual tree lighting is the tree lighter(s). This year, we were privileged to honor Jackie and Bobby Pollock. They have lived in our community for several years and have served on many volunteer boards. Bobby has also been a member of the City Council.

Santa made his grand arrival on the fire truck and all the children enjoyed a special time sharing their lists with him. The annual golf cart parade boasted over a dozen golf carts this year and they were amazing. From tinsel to twinkly lights and inflatable characters, it was a wonderful parade. A very big thank you goes out to Traci Gaddis and the Mexico Beach Department of Public Safety.

We hope you will be able to stop by Sunset Park during this holiday season and take in all the wonder that the park has transformed into. 
Last month we had a gift certificate to Frost Pottery Garden up for grabs and the lucky winner was Robin Bathke from Nashville, Tennessee. Congratulations, Robin!
This month we’re giving away a gift certificate to Cathey’s Ace Hardware. It’s more than just a hardware store; they offer paints, plants, fishing tackle, beach items, and more. To put your name in the hat, send an e-mail to Melissa (melissa@mexicobeach.com) and be sure to put your contact info in the e-mail.
This month we would like to introduce you to two couples who selected Mexico Beach as their wedding destination. For more information on weddings or vow renewal ceremonies on the beach, visit mexicobeach.com.
The first couple is Tim and Imbi, who ventured down from Kentucky to say their vows. It was a beautiful wedding that took place right on the shoreline. The weather was perfect for these two. Congratulations, Tim and Imbi!
Next is Ken and Diane—Mexico Beach locals! They had their wedding right on the beach at sunset surrounded by family and friends. It was a beautiful ceremony. Congratulations, Ken and Diane!
December 9
Don’t forget our produce and craft market that takes place each month. Come spend the day going from booth to booth at the Mexico Beach Farmer’s and Craft Market. The market will take place at Parker Park, located on Hwy. 98 in beautiful Mexico Beach, and will be open to the public from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. (CST). There will be plenty of produce, crafts, photography, jewelry, and much more.
December 31, 2017 – January 1, 2018
Once again, Mexico Beach is getting ready to bring in the New Year—twice! Complimentary shuttle buses will transport New Year’s Eve patrons to area hot spots from Mexico Beach to Port St. Joe, and places in between. Enjoy the beach, enjoy the celebration, and don’t worry about the driving. There will be two fireworks shows: one in Port St. Joe at 10 p.m. (EST) and one in Mexico Beach at midnight (CST). Come celebrate the New Year— twice—at the beach!
February 17, 2018
Our 19th annual gumbo cook-off will be held Saturday, February 17. Locals and visitors compete each year for the coveted blue ribbon and the recognition that goes along with being the best. We’ll have great gumbo plus a Brunswick Stew Competition. And, to be sure nobody goes hungry, we’ll have sausages, cold beer, and a nice selection of wines. To top off this fun-filled day, live music will be performed by Stainless Steel. Come out and enjoy a great day of gumbo, music, and sun in Mexico Beach.
March 1, 2018
Each year we show appreciation for our winter visitors (Snowbirds) with a complimentary luncheon and social afternoon. All those who have made Mexico Beach their home away from home are invited to join the Mexico Beach Community Development Council at the pool deck of the El Governor Motel. Fun, food, and music will be enjoyed as we say thank you and see you again soon!
April 14, 2018
For the fourth year the Mexico Beach Community Development Council will be hosting their mass wedding vow renewal ceremony on the beach, and all married couples are invited to attend. The ceremony will take place on the beach at Sunset Park at 4:00 p.m. The event will include our traditional champagne and cupcake reception after the ceremony. Check with our vacation rental companies—some have special rates for that weekend.
No Trace
Mexico Beach is a Leave No Trace community, and we appreciate your assistance in helping us keep our beaches clean. Any items left on the beach unattended from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. will be removed and disposed of by the City of Mexico Beach. Items include, but are not limited to, tents and tent frames, beach chairs, coolers, umbrellas, toys, etc. Also, please fill in any holes before you leave. Your assistance with these requests will keep our beaches beautiful and pristine. For full details on this ordinance or questions, click here or contact City Hall at (850) 648-5700.
Easy Shrimp and Crab Pasta Recipe
This is an easy recipe with a surprising and delicious taste.
Our recipe is presented by the Mexico Beach Artificial Reef Association and you can find their newest cookbook at MBARA.org.

8 ounces cooked angel hair pasta
1 (6-ounce) can lump crabmeat, undrained
½ pound shrimp, cooked and chopped
1 large onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, pressed
2 tablespoons butter
½ teaspoon oregano
½ teaspoon basil
1 quart half-and-half
Red pepper flakes
1 ½ tablespoons cornstarch
Salt and pepper
Sauté onion and garlic in butter until onion is nearly translucent. Add oregano, basil, red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper to taste. Add half-and-half, bring to boil. Mix cornstarch with enough water to dilute it, and pour into boiling sauce until you get desired consistency. Stir in crab and shrimp and cook another minute. Spoon over angel hair pasta and enjoy!
MBARA Cookbook
The MBARA has published another great cookbook (3rd edition) and it’s now available to you! With 280 recipes, there are some great meals you can prepare and enjoy. If you would like a copy, you can visit www.MBARA.org for more information.
Thoughts of the Month
Some humor for those lovely couples who can relate.

A group of 12 women were at a seminar on how to live in a loving relationship with their husbands. The women were asked, "How many of you love your husband?" All the women raised their hands. Then they were asked, "When was the last time you told your husband you loved him?" Some women answered today, a few said yesterday, and some couldn't remember. The women were then told to take out their cell phones and text their husbands this message: "I love you, sweetheart." Next, the women were instructed to exchange phones with another woman and read aloud the text message responses.

Below are the 12 replies from their husbands. If you have been married for quite a while, you will understand that these replies are signs of true love. Who else would reply in such succinct and honest ways?

— Who the heck is this?
— Hey, mother of my children, are you sick or what?
— Yeah, and I love you too. What's wrong?
— What now? Did you wreck the car again?
— I don't understand what you mean?
— What the hell did you do now?
— Are you sure this is for me?
— Don't beat about the bush; just tell me how much you need.
— Am I dreaming?
— If you don't tell me who this message is actually for, someone will die.
— I thought we agreed you wouldn't drink during the day.
— Your mother is coming to stay with us, isn't she?
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©2017 Mexico Beach Community Development Council | (850) 648-8196 or (888) 723-2546 | info@mexicobeach.com