UPDATE: State Advisory Committees Recommend Leaving Pamlico Sound Open To Trawling

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Commercial fisherman lined the New Bern waterfront Tuesday anchored in protest to a petition asking for The North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries to consider closing the Pamlico Sound to shrimp trawlers.

Advisory committees recommended denying the petition Tuesday which would leave the sound open for crabbing and shrimping.
The commission will make a final vote in August.

The state agency tells WITN he proposal to reclassify waters was submitted to the agency by a private individual through a petition for rule making. The state agency says citizens can ask state agencies and boards for rule changes, and the commission is required by state law to either grant or deny the petition within 120 days of its submission.

Tuesday's meeting was a joint meeting of 4 advisory committees which recommended the commission deny the petition.
The commission will vote on the petition at its August 28-30 meeting in Raleigh.

During the public comment period about 65 people spoke. One committee member tells us all but one was against the petition.

Commercial fisherman say they are planning to speak their minds today against proposed changes to reclassifying some waterways that they say would change their lifestyle.

Some worry the proposal to reclassify most internal coastal waters as secondary nursery areas would prevent fishermen from trawling for shrimp in some inland waters, such as the Pamlico Sound.

A handful of shrimp boats showed up in New Bern early Tuesday as part of a silent protest against the proposal.

The meeting to discuss the petition is at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday at the New Bern Riverfront Convention Center. Public comment will be limited to three minutes per person.