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FISHER ED

LET'S HEAR IT FOR MN LAWMAKERS??

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Don't get me wrong because of my disgust but I do know we have to start somewhere with this issue and it's better to see something than nothing at all. Last year a bill was introduced to the Legislature to harshly punish people that like to take advantage of our valued fish and game resources. Unfortunately, our lawmakers were afraid that this bill would be too harsh for those who accidentally, or unknowingly, exceeded their limits by a low margin and the bill didn't pass. Here it is, a new year, and the same bill is introduced with some changes to help it get through the process, and it did. But what kind of a law really passed? A law was passed that now requires people willing to violate it to learn to be a more accurate in their counting. With this new law, a person who knowingly exceeds their limit of walleyes will have to stop when they get 16 over the given limit in their live well. Anything more than that and they take the chance of not being able to fish for the next few years. But, by staying at 16 over the limit, they can just take the slap on the wrist, pay their fine and go fishing the next day.
I think we need to get this law refined a lot more for it to help protect the resources. I can see trying to protect the person that miscounts his/her catch in the live well and has one or two fish over the limit but to have 16 walleyes more than you are suppose to is a joke. Either the restitution threshold needs to be lowered or the values assigned to over limit fish/game needs to be increased. Otherwise, all people need to do is keep better track of their take when they break the law which will allow them to do it more often instead of loosing their license like they should.

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In my opinion, there is no difference between those who have 1 fish over their limit or those who have 100! It's still breaking the law. If you can't be responsible enough to keep count of your fish, you have NO business keeping any, let alone even be fishing.
It's not the people who are keeping vast numbers of fish that are hurting the resource, its those who keep 1, 2, or 3 over every time out. Make the penalties stiff, don't make them a joke.
I read somewhere last year that the reason the bill did not pass was because they feared it would hurt tourism....does this make any sense? To me all it said was, they did not want to scare away all the tourists who went home with more fish than their legal limit, like it was something that was expected. Well, to me, if you are going to break the law, I don't want you here anyway!!! Stay home and deplete your own resource, don't rape ours!!!
I know of a lake up near Park Rapids that WAS known for its monster bluegill. There are only 2 cabins on the lake, and one is owned by this jerk from Nebraska. Well, this A-Hole was caught with 3,000 Bluegill in his freezer that he had taken from this lake over the course of the summer. Apparently he was taking them home to Nebraska every fall and giving them away or who knows what. Well, he still owns his cabin, he still owns his boat, and he still fishes....there is something very wrong with this picture.
Things need to change, and until we get some lawmakers in there that have a set, women included, nothing will.

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Last year I got a chance to watch some debate on this bill in a senate commitee. There was one senator there who couldn't understand why restitution on an illegal rooster pheasant is $50, when he can go to the game farm and get one for $14. I don't know if there is much hope if this is the caliber of person that is serving in St Paul. This is one of the members that supposedly knows something about the outdoors.

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I think that the penalty for poaching any type of wild game should be income based with a minimum fine. To a person who makes 100,000 a year, a $100 fine isn't a whole lot. A larger fine may be more of a deterrent to these people.

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Our boat was checked in MB, while fishing, the usual questions asked, and I didnt have my barbs pinched, he asked me, when did I buy my lic.? I said the same morning, he let me go with a warning, and gave me a pack of barbless jigs. I did know about the barbless law and had just switched spinners and forgot to look, I wonder if I had over the limit of fish and he asked the same question if I'd got the same treatment? no chance!, 16 makes no sence..

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seeing people keep illegal fish makes me sick. the fines should be more than money, they should loose their licence for a season or two. fines should also be more than 100 dollars for a first time offense.

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Don't you think that if you are old enough to fish you should be able to count? Does this theory work when we are speeding down the highway also?

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Phyl

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