Dump the Commissioner from Packard! - Saltwater Fishing Discussion Board Including Inshore Fishing, Offshore Fishing, Saltwater Fly Fishing and Kayak Fishing
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Old 08-31-2009, 10:32 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Dump the Commissioner from Packard!

Time for a change.

Please forward! - Mike Sutton's confirmation as Fish & Game
Commissioner is coming up for a hearing in the Senate Rules Committee
this Friday, Sept. 4th. Letters on associations' letterhead can be
faxed to them for more impact. The RFA opposes this appointment. Our
letter is below.

Contact the Senate Rules Committee and urge a "NO" vote on Sutton's
confirmation as Fish & Game Commissioner:

Phone: (916) 651-4151

Fax: (916) 455-0596



-Jim



Monday, August 31, 2009

Senator Darrell Steinberg, Chair
Senate Rules Committee
State Capitol, Room 400
Sacramento CA 95814
Phone: (916) 651-4151
Fax: (916) 455-0596

RE: CONFIRMATION HEARING FOR MICHAEL SUTTON AS FISH AND GAME COMMISSIOER ? OPPOSE.

Dear Senator Steinberg,

The Recreational Fishing Alliance (RFA) is a national 501(c)(4) non-profit grassroots political action organization whose mission is to safeguard the rights of salt water anglers, protect marine, boat, and tackle industry jobs, and insure the long-term sustainability of our nation?s marine fisheries.

On behalf of the RFA, I urge you to reject the confirmation of Michael Sutton as Fish & Game Commissioner.

Mr. Sutton has made himself unavailable to anglers and divers, yet he meets regularly with representatives of environmental organizations; he has even stated that he sees these well-funded, out-of-state organizations as his "constituency" rather than the people of California.

Mr. Sutton has shown complete disregard to the recreational fishing community, and seems unaware that we provide more than $60 million in funding for the Department of Fish and Game through our license fees alone.

As a long-time employee of the Packard Foundation, he has a serious conflict of interest in the Marine Life Protection Act process. The Packard Foundation has provided much of the funding for the MLPA stakeholder process, which is one thing, but to have one of its employees casting a vote on the outcome has caused a complete loss of trust among the fishing communities of California.

It's ironic that the MLPA regulations for the north-central coast will actually damage sustainable fisheries such as abalone diving, and hand-harvest of nutritional seaweed, rather than providing needed conservation benefits. Mr. Sutton simply would not meet with or listen to representatives of the abalone divers to learn more about the data and how the regulations would threaten sustainable fisheries.

Prior to his appointment to the Fish & Game Commission, Mr. Sutton testified as an advocate for specific MPA proposals that call into question his objectivity on the issues.

As a current board member of the political action committee, "Ocean Champions," Mr. Sutton is actively engaged in electioneering and corrupts the stature of the Commission as an independent decision-making body.

Environmental justice is a very important issue to us. When members of the Pomo band at Stewarts Point begged Mr. Sutton to make small adjustments to the MLPA regulations in the north-central region, he refused and broke a cultural link to nature that lasted for hundreds of years for that community. He has voted for regulations that disproportionately affect the low-income sectors of society that can least afford it.

Above all, Mr. Sutton has an agenda for privatizing public trust resources through Individual Fishing Quotas (IFQs) and corporate ownership of commercial fishing operations. He supports private funding for traditional fishery management that will inevitably remove the public even further from decisions affecting people's quality of life, our marine resources and the economic-wellbeing of coastal communities.

The people of California deserve Commissioners who are open-minded and listen to all sides before making a decision. Mr. Sutton has given every impression that he is a lobbyist for a single advocacy group, and not even representative of the entire "environmental community." Recreational anglers in particular feel their public testimony is a waste of time at Fish and Game Commission hearings. This sentiment undermines our ability to engage the public in important regulatory decisions because people know "the game is rigged."

We urge you to reject the confirmation of Michael Sutton as Fish and Game Commissioner.

Sincerely,


Jim Martin
West Coast Regional Director
The Recreational Fishing Alliance
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Old 08-31-2009, 11:49 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Roger that!

For folks who understand and agree (please don't be sheep), all it takes is a phone call. At least do that. Apathy is unacceptable. Time is brief. After Friday, it's all over but the shouting. -Joel

This post edited by linglover 09/01/2009
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Old 09-01-2009, 02:35 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default re: Dump the Commissioner from Packard!

Fax: (916) 455-0596

That fax number is disconnected or no longer in service.
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Old 09-01-2009, 02:42 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default re: Dump the Commissioner from Packard!

I just called. The number for individual letters is 916 445 0596.
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Old 09-01-2009, 03:04 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default re: Dump the Commissioner from Packard!

Quote:
Originally Posted by boswell
I just called. The number for individual letters is 916 445 0596.
I just sent a letter to that fax number and it went through.
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Old 09-01-2009, 06:03 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default re: Dump the Commissioner from Packard!

Thanks Boz. Letter sent.
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Old 09-02-2009, 07:46 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default re: Dump the Commissioner from Packard!

Takes only thirty seconds:

Phone: (916) 651-4151

Simply Dial this number, a friendly woman will a promptly ask you if you are calling in Regards to the Sutton Confirmation Hearing.
Answer. YES

She will ask:
Are You in Support, or Opposition of Mr. Sutton's Confirmation.
Answer. I am in Opposition.

She will ask your name and what area you are calling from.
Answer. Tell Her your name and where you are calling from.
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Old 09-02-2009, 08:56 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default re: Dump the Commissioner from Packard!

Quote:
Originally Posted by PescadorPete
Takes only thirty seconds:

Phone: (916) 651-4151

Simply Dial this number, a friendly woman will a promptly ask you if you are calling in Regards to the Sutton Confirmation Hearing.
Answer. YES

She will ask:
Are You in Support, or Opposition of Mr. Sutton's Confirmation.
Answer. I am in Opposition.

She will ask your name and what area you are calling from.
Answer. Tell Her your name and where you are calling from.
I just spoke with her. told her why i was calling, my opposition to Mr Sutton's confirmation and she asked my name and location.

Thanks Pescador Pete!
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Old 09-04-2009, 02:39 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Here's how it went . . .

The Rules Committee just voted to confirm Sutton as Commissioner on a 3-2 vote.

AYE:
Steinberg, Oropeza, Cedillo

NO:
Aanastad

ABSTAIN:
Dutton

Dutton and Aanastad asked some great questions, but in the end the Ayes had it. They saw no conflict with an employee of the Monterey Bay Aquarium voting on the MLPA.

It should be noted very few fishing organizations supported Sutton in public testimony. Here are the organizations in support:

Tom Raftican, Sportfishing Conservancy
Don Benninghoven, F&G Commissioner
Barry Broad, lobbyist for the Teamsters
Karen Garrison, Natural Resources Defense Council
Kaitilyn Gaffney, The Ocean Conservancy
Tom Weseloh, Cal Trout
Charles Baccario, Northern Calirnornia Federation of Flyfishers
Action For Animals
The Nature Conservancy
Environmental Defense Fund
PawPac (animal rights org)
Sierra Club
Audubon Society
__________________
Jim Martin
West Coast Regional Director
The Recreational Fishing Alliance (RFA)
www.JoinRFA.org
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Old 09-04-2009, 03:03 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default re: Here's how it went . . .

This angler supports the man. I believe it is in our best interests to not close our eyes to the fact that exploitation of our resources is not in our best interests. Have an open mind and don't be afraid to question the opinions of others.

To say that the science does not support the facts that one side is presenting is idiocracy.
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