Monday 20 November 2017

Councillors concerns at the frequency of checks on Kilmore fishermen

Esther Hayden

Fishermen in Kilmore Quay are being unfairly targeted by the Sea Fisheries Protection Authority according to members of Wexford Municipal District.

At last week's meeting of the local authority, on the licence agreement of the body's office at Kilmore Quay Harbour Office, members voiced their concerns that the fishermen fishing out of Kilmore Quay were subject to far more frequent and rigorous checks than fishermen elsewhere.

Cllr Anthony Kelly said that the policing body 'seems to be targeting fishermen off Kilmore Quay' and said he wanted that noted.

He was supported by Cllr Tony Dempsey who said he believed the Kilmore Quay fishermen were subject to 'excessive inspection of their fishing fleet. Inspections aren't nearly as frequent or intense in other parts of the country', he said.

'There seems to be a heavy handed approach by the Sea Fisheries Board in the way it handles inspections at Kilmore Quay', said Cllr George Lawlor. 'They seem to be targeting Irish boats.'

Cllr Davy Hynes was in agreement.

'There is no doubt that the fishermen have gotten a raw deal and they don't seem to have been given a fighting chance. They do seem to be targeted.' Cllr Deirdre Wadding said the council needed to look at ways to support the fishermen.

Cllr Fergie Kehoe suggested writing to the Sea Fisheries Protection Authority to get figures for inspections at Kilmore compared to other harbours nationwide.

Despite their concerns about the number of inspections being carried out at Kilmore, the members agreed to support the licence agreement which was backdated to September 2013 and will remain in place for four years and 11 months with an annual licence fee of €4,000.

Wexford People

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