On behalf of the JCAA, I attended the New Jersey Outdoor Alliance (NJOA) meeting on February 27th and also chaired this meeting as its president. The following is a brief summary of this meeting.
The NJOA held its fundraising dinner at the Black Forest Inn in Stanhope on February 19th, and it was a successful wild game dinner that included different menu items such as boar, venison, pheasant, snow goose, bear, quail, bison tongue and smoked trout that are not usually seen in most restaurants. JCAA's Paul Haertel gave about 25 lbs. of blackfish to this restaurant to prepare for this dinner that he caught on his boat along with his colleague (Kyren Dooley). Approximately 146 NJOA supporters were in attendance. Governor hopeful, Kim Guadagno, was the guest speaker and she talked about how she will support New Jersey's hunters and anglers. Kim usually attends the Governor's Surf Tournament along with her children. (The Governor's Surf Tournament is scheduled for May 21st of this year at Island Beach State Park).
The NJOA hosted a Caucus on February 28th at the State House in Trenton with legislators to provide them with information on a variety of important topics to us such as: Dog Trap issue, why a bear hunt is necessary, the 19-inch fluke problem and the very important lack of funding for our fisheries. This caucus was held without formal presentations and legislators were invited to simply show up at their convenience and listen to us talk about the above issues. Approximately a dozen legislators attended and they all knew about the 19-inch fluke issue, some more than others. This is good news since it shows this fluke issue is on the radar of our legislators and they were interested in learning more about this problem to support us.