Due to committee members illness, time pressure due to bad weather as we tried to prepare our Boats for the Season, and other constraints, we were unable to hold our AGM in Spring this year. We will hold our 2016 AGM as previously, on the same WE as the Specimen Awards, when many Skippers will be in Dublin already.
After discussion, it has been decided that that the Renewal Sub for 2015 will be zero – We have some cash in the Bank, and few outgoings at present, so bearing in mind the current poor economic climate, and financial hardship being experienced by many Skippers, we do not urgently need to collect subscriptions. All existing Members will be sent their annual membership window stickers shortly. Any Skippers who have already paid their Sub will be refunded. In the event of an unforeseen problem arising that requires money, or a general improvement in the Charter Business, we will restart an annual Subscription.
A query was raised during the year on recreational Angling for Blue Fin Tuna – please click HERE to see the Parliamentary Question put to Mr Coveney and his reply on the matter, which outlines some of the complexities involved.
This year, several members of the ICSA were asked to join their local Regional Inshore Fisheries Forum (RIFF) as Marine Leisure Reps, and our Vice President, John McLoughlin, is a member of the National body, the National Inshore Fisheries Forum (NIFF). This development gives Charter Skippers a voice in the utilization of our Inshore Fisheries. Although heavily outnumbered by commercial interests, it nevertheless gives us Charter Skippers a voice on the National Stage, some input into how the inshore Fishery resource is to be exploited on a fair and sustainable basis by all, and a say on how any new funding sources are allocated to the Sector. An announcement on new Funding will be made during the coming year.
Among other matters discussed at the RIFFs this year, of particular interest to charter skippers were a commercial quota for Bass (strongly resisted), restrictions on ‘Recreational’ potting, the conflict between vessels of different sizes in inshore waters, (which could lead to something like the “Golden Mile” concept, pushing the larger vessels out to deeper waters), and implications of Special Areas of Conservation, ( it looks like SAC’s will have no severe effects on Angling operations at present.)
The ICSA members involved in the NIFF and RIFF are :
National Inshore Fisheries Forum
John McLoughlin - Vice President of ICSA email firstname.lastname@example.org
North Western Regional Inshore Fisheries Forum
Mary Gavin Hughes – Treasurer of ICSA email email@example.com
Western Regional Fisheries Forum
Luke Aston email firstname.lastname@example.org
Southwestern Regional Inshore Fisheries Forum
Joe Lynch – Secretary of ICSA email email@example.com
If you have a view on how the Inshore Fishery is to develop, please contact your local RIFF representative at the above email address.
Chairman’s Annual Christmas Greeting
It’s been a tough year for Skippers, but 2016 will be a better year for us. The weather can only improve, and so too will our business.
Happy Christmas and a Happy and prosperous New Year to all members of the Irish Charter Skippers Association !
From Donal Kennedy, and all the Committee of the ICSA