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There was a good turnout for this morning's fluke rally at Fisherman's Supply in Point Pleasant Beach. Despite the relatively short notice of a weekday morning rally at a time of year when many anglers (including me) are on vacation in warmer climes, Paul Haertel of the JCAA counted about 300 on hand to hear DEP Commissioner Bob Martin detail the potential economic disaster that a 19-inch fluke minimum and short season would ensure for Shore party and charter boats plus tackle shops. Martin assured the crowd that the DEP is doing everything possible to retain status quo regulations pending a new baseline stock assessment that many experts feel will show the summer flounder population is in much better shape than outdated estimates  suggest.  The DEP will need help from our regional partners in N.Y. and Ct. in putting pressure on NOAA Fisheries and the ASMFC in order to get status quo added as an option. Rep. Frank Pallone D-NJ) also spoke, as did Assembly Republican Conference Leader David Rible of Wall whose resolution in support of status quo was passed unanimously in the Assembly. Haertel noted there were also strong presentations by Jimmy Donofrio of the RFA, Capt. Pete Grimbilas of the NJOA, and Capt. Jeff Gutman of the Voyager among others.  The Ocean Explorer from Belmar reported poor bottom fishing the last two days in lumpy seas that have disturbed the bottom, while winds prevented them from fishing further offshore where the bottom would be less disturbed. Since Saturday doesn't look good, the Ocean Explorer is looking to Sunday for a better shot at blackfish. Saturday's Canyon Runner Seminar at Atlantic City is sold out, but the Somerset Fly Fishing Show and New York Boat Show are open through Sunday.

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