Ocracoke Commercial Fishermen are asking you to contact your elected representatives.

If red drum, striped bass and speckled trout make your mouth water, and you'd like to continue buying these species at markets or restaurants, please use the links below to make your voice heard. The committee responsible for House Bill 983 will be voting whether to send it to the floor by Friday, May 17.

The following letter from local food advocate John Day appeared in Ocracoke Current several weeks ago. Sundae is working on a news story about the game fish bill which will be published soon.

OWWA members urge you to help take Bill 983 off the table so red drum can stay on your table.
OWWA members urge you to help take Bill 983 off the table so red drum can stay on your table.

To the Editors:

This is a call for help from local food advocates. 

One of the most beleaguered segments of the local food system is wild-caught seafood. It's a story of cultural heritage and very healthy and tasty food running up against coastal developers, the wealthy sportfishing industry, cheap imports (and all the associated issues) and political agendas. 

Part I of House Bill 983 is an attempt to diminish our food sovereignty in North Carolina by prohibiting commercial fishermen from catching red drum, spotted sea trout and stripped bass. H983 reserves those three species exclusively for sport fishermen. If this bill passes that essentially means that you'll never be able to eat those fish from NC waters again unless you have the means to go out in the ocean and catch them yourself.

Don't be fooled by the language of this bill - wild-caught seafood is already managed sustainably. Prohibiting commercial fishermen from catching these three species DOES NOT reduce the catch limits, it just limits who can catch it (and eat it).

Please call and email the members of the House Committee on Commerce and Job Development and urge them to remove Part I from H983. We don't need to begin this journey down the slippery slope of making certain local foods the exclusive domain of the few. 

Following are members of the House Committee on Commerce and Job Development with links to their contact information:


Rep. Murry

Vice Chairman

Rep. W. Brawley

Vice Chairman

Rep. Conrad

Vice Chairman

Rep. Millis

Vice Chairman

Rep. Moffitt

Vice Chairman

Rep. R. Moore

Vice Chairman

Rep. Saine

Vice Chairman

Rep. Stone

Vice Chairman

Rep. Torbett


Rep. AlexanderRep. AvilaRep. L. BellRep. BlackwellRep. BolesRep. R. BrawleyRep. BrodyRep. B. BrownRep. BumgardnerRep. CarneyRep. CatlinRep. CollinsRep. CunninghamRep. DockhamRep. DollarRep. EarleRep. Farmer-ButterfieldRep. Fisher,Rep. FloydRep. FulghumRep. GoodmanRep. C. GrahamRep. G. GrahamRep. Hager,Rep. D. HallRep. HamiltonRep. HanesRep. HolleyRep. HollowayRep. HowardRep. JeterRep. JohnsonRep. LambethRep. LewisRep. LucasRep. MaloneRep. Martin,Rep. PierceRep. PresnellRep. RichardsonRep. RiddellRep. SamuelsonRep. Schaffer,Rep. SetzerRep. ShepardRep. SpecialeRep. StarnesRep. SteinburgRep. SzokaRep. TerryRep. TineRep. TolsonRep. WaddellRep. WarrenRep. WellsRep. WestRep. WhitmireRep. Wray

Thank you in advance for your help.

John Day

Saxapahaw, NC