Statement By Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley On Blue Crab Management Decisions By Virginia

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ANNAPOLIS, MD – Governor Martin O’Malley released the following statement today regarding Virginia’s efforts to assist in the rebuilding of the Blue Crab population in the Chesapeake Bay:

“I want to thank Governor Kaine and his staff for their leadership and partnership with Maryland on their historic efforts to rebuild the Chesapeake Bay blue crab fishery.”

“When Governor Kaine and I met in Colonial Beach on April 15, we made a commitment to work together to reduce the harvest of female crabs by 34 percent this year. By closing the winter dredge fishery and agreeing to close the fall crab fishery early, Virginia’s actions confirm that we are on the right course, and strengthens our resolve to ensure that our own regulatory measures, proposed earlier this week, are put in place according to plan.”

“These are not easy decisions to make. We are greatly concerned about the impact of these actions on our watermen and our processing industry, and we remain committed to identifying opportunities to mitigate this economic impact. However, these actions are necessary if we are to ensure a sustainable blue crab fishery for future generations.”

“I am very proud of the partnership that we have developed with Virginia on this issue, and look forward to collaborating on other issues critical to health of the treasured resource we share, the Chesapeake Bay.”