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Saturday, January 3, 2004



Meetings to cover
possible lay net ban

Statewide sessions over the
unattended nets begin Monday


The state Department of Land & Natural Resources resumes a statewide series of public meetings Monday to discuss a proposal to ban lay nets.

The proposed ban would include commercial, recreational and subsistence lay nets, which are fishing nets left unattended. The ban would not apply to throw nets, cast nets, opelu or akule nets, aquarium fishery fence nets, lobster nets, and lobster or fish traps.

The proposed ban is in response to complaints that the unattended nets threaten endangered species and catch nontargeted fish.

The first meeting is Monday at the Waianae Library from 6:30 to 9 p.m.

The informational meetings are scheduled to generate public discussion, particularly among fishermen. There are no proposed rule amendments, though some guidelines are being considered.

Background information on proposed options are available from the DLNR's Division of Aquatic Resources offices or online at www.hawaii.gov/ dlnr/dar/laynet_mgmt.htm.

The following meetings will be from 6 to 9 p.m.:

>> Jan. 20: Lihue, Wilcox Elementary School cafeteria
>> Jan. 22: Kailua-Kona, Kealakehe High
>> Jan. 23: Hilo, Waiakea High
>> Jan. 26, Kaunakakai, Mitchell Pauole Center
>> Jan. 27: Lanai City, Lanai Public Library
>> Jan. 29: Kahului, Maui Waena Intermediate
>> Jan. 30: Kaneohe, Benjamin Parker School

The DLNR will summarize public discussions and recommendations, and draft administrative rules. Once the Land Board approves these rules, they will go out for additional public review.

For more information, contact Deborah Ward at 587-0320.

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