Fish Rock closures anger protest group

The Community Action for Fish Rock (CAFR) protest group is disappointed with the final outcome of changes to fishing regulations imposed at Fish Rock and Green Island on the Northern NSW Coast. The changes announced at 3pm last Friday January 28 by Primary Industries Minister Steve Whan came into effect immediately. More details HERE.

According to CAFR spokesman Chris Wallis, the timing and content of the announcement, whilst not unexpected, were disappointing.

He said the late announcement of the closures, “immediately shows the arrogance of this Government.”

“If it had not been for the efforts of Community Action for Fish Rock group, more stringent regulations than these would have been implemented well before Christmas.”

“Not only was over $400000 of fishing licence revenue used to finance this research they still can not prove a single instance of accidental hooking [of a grey nurse shark] at Fish Rock,” Wallis said.

A ban on bait fishing now in place at Fish Rock is expected to impact on the local economy as the location is a popular venue for anglers who visit South West Rocks and Hat Head specifically to fish for legal sized kingfish, most commonly with live baiting methods.

In July this year South West Rocks plays host to the Australian Fishing Championships. In the meantime, locals opposed to the closures are pinning their hopes on the state election in March to deliver a change in government and a reversal of the closures. 

“CAFR will continue to fight against these unnecessary regulations right up until the time they are reversed by the new Government,” Wallis said.

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