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Home Explore FY18 MDMR Annual Report

FY18 MDMR Annual Report

Published by francesca.linthicum, 2018-12-05 12:21:20

Description: A summary of Mississippi Department of Marine Resources from July 1, 2017- June 30, 2018.

Keywords: Annual Report,Mississipp Department of Marine Resouces


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ANNUAL REPORT FISCAL YEAR 2018 July 1, 2017 - June 30, 2018 The Mississippi Department of Marine Resources is dedicated to enhancing, protecting and conserving the state’s marine interestsby managing all marine life, public trust wetlands, adjacent uplands and waterfront areas to provide optimal commercial, recreational, educational and economic uses of these resources consistent with environmental concerns and social changes. This annual report was prepared by the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources, Office of the Executive Director, with contributions from staff. Fish Illustrations: Joe Jewell • Photos: William Lee (cover), Jimmy Baker (table of contents), Amanda Phillips (pg.1), Tammy Simmons (pg.9), Heather McKnight (pg.15), Kristin Stachura Allen (pg.21), Colin McCain (pg.23), David Salters (inside front cover; pg.28), Erika Erickson (pg.28), Tim Lawton (pg.36) Eric Sparks (pg.45), Caroline Shaw (inside back cover) and MDMR Staff


TABLE OF CONTENTS01 EXECUTIVE OFFICE 39 COASTAL RESTORATION AND RESILIENCY •Information Technology •Property Management •Mississippi Gulf Coast •Public Affairs National Heritage Area •Derelict Vessel Program •Human Resources 45 COASTAL RESOURCES MANAGEMENT09 FINANCE •Coastal Preserves Bureau •Finance and Accounting •Wetlands Permitting Bureau •Grants Administration •Procurement 51 GRAND BAY NATIONAL ESTUARINE RESEARCH15 TIDELANDS RESERVE19 MARINE PATROL 55 AQUACULTURE PROGRAM23 MARINE FISHERIES •Aquaculture Hatchery •Oyster Aquaculture •Artificial Reef •Off-Bottom Oyster Aquaculture •Finfish Bureau Training Program •Seafood Technology Bureau •Shellfish Bureau 61 COMMISSION ON •Shrimp and Crab Bureau MARINE RESOURCES

1 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

EXECUTIVE OFFICEThe programs and services within the Executive Office of the MississippiDepartment of Marine Resources (MDMR) provide operational supportto all other programs within the MDMR.These programs include:•INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY•PROPERTY MANAGEMENT•PUBLIC AFFAIRS•DERELICT VESSEL•HUMAN RESOURCES Joe Spraggins Executive Director • Executive Office • 2

INFORMATION TECHNOLOGYDirector: Brian SherwoodInformation Technology consists of two functional teams: IT operations and Geographic Information Systems (GIS).GOALS:• Provide a secure, reliable computing infrastructure that enables rich data collection and analysis capabilities, fosters collaboration and empowers the end-users to maximize productivity.• Create innovative, custom-built solutions that significantly improve workflow, user productivity and data quality.ACCOMPLISHMENTS: • Launched an extensive GIS Mapping Portal for internal users. • Engaged in external collaboration and partnership activities, including:• Unified IT and GIS roles into a single, functional team to improve o Organized the fifth annual statewide GIS conference. overall efficiency. o Formed inter-office GIS user group. o Represented MDMR and the state of Mississippi advocating the• Launched a structured project management initiative for all existing and 3D Nation for the U.S. Geological Survey. upcoming projects which involve IT/GIS. • Created 10 custom GIS-based data collection solutions. • Created six Real Time Data Dashboards.• Continued modernization activities for desktops and servers.• Extended the agency phone system to the aquaculture facility in Lyman.• Commenced deployment of SharePoint-based collaboration solutions.• Completed acquisition and began design phase of Marine Patrol CAD/RMS solution.• Began migration to ArcGIS Pro user platform.UAS PROGRAM 6 INTERACTIVE MAPPING 1,434 APPLICATIONS completed49 WORK 2 including ORDERSUnmanned Aircraft NOAA FUNDED System missions PROJECTS FOR THE COASTAL PROGRAM3 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

PROPERTY MANAGEMENT Property Manager: Vandy MitchellThe mission of the Property Management office is to MAINTAIN ACCOUNTABILITY FOR ALL STATE PROPERTY under the controlof the MDMR and maintain all pool vehicles and vessels to ensure their operational readiness.31 2,495 = $13,942,987 INVENTORY ITEMSparcels of land 9 6OVERSEES VEHICLES 23 Buildings$29,834,990 STATE REGULATIONSVALUE OF ALL MDMR PROPERTY require the agency to report fuel and maintenance records of all vehicles in MAGIC.GOALS:•Continue improving accountability of all assets owned by the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources.•Ensure all items that are required by law are listed on inventory.•Ensure that state vehicles are properly maintained throughout their lifespan.ACCOMPLISHMENTS:•Accounted for each inventory item during the FY18 property audit conducted by the State Auditor’s Office.•Updated the MDMR fleet and disposed of high-mileage vehicles that had become costly to maintain.•Built a new Fisheries lab complex that includes a wet lab, fish aging lab and harmful algal bloom lab, and two new break areas for offices on the second and fifth floors. • Executive Office • 4

PROCUREMENT BUREAU Director: Rick KinnardThe Procurement Bureau is responsible for all purchasing administration. This includes commodities and services using the quote andpurchase -order processes, as well as smaller purchases made using procurement cards. This bureau also is responsible for agencypurchasing contracts using a structured procurement process that can include requests for qualifications/proposals, memorandums ofagreement and memorandums of understanding. It is made up of a procurement director, lead contracts analyst, purchasing agent andprocurement specialist. – PURCHASE ORDERS BY OFFICE & BUREAU – Fisheries $702,655 $1,902,429 Coastal Resources $2,850,000 Special Project $266,621 Management $510,638 Actual $1,586,362 Marine Patrol AdFmininainstcreataionnd $48,162Coastal&ReRsetsoirliaetniocny $64,877 Grand Bay NERRTidelandsBonds $566,514 • Office of Finance and Administration • 14

15 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

TIDELANDSTidelands are lands that are COVERED AND UNCOVEREDDAILY BY WATER from the action of the tides, up to the mean lineof the ordinary high tides. The Tidelands Trust Fund is comprisedof funds derived from the lease of tidelands and submerged landsand is ADMINISTERED by MDMR as mandated by STATE LAW.The Secretary of State’s Office presents the Tidelands check toMississippi Department of Marine Resources (MDMR) officialsand legislators each year. Sonja Slater Coordinator • Tidelands Trust Fund • 16

The state Legislature each year approves Tidelands funding for MDMR to administer through the Tidelands Program. This action is authorized through the Mississippi Codeof 1971 Section 29-15-9 and Section 29-15-10.During the 2017 session, the Legislature approved $9.7 million in projects through HB1518. In 2018, through HB1606, the Legislature approved $10 million in funding.Tidelands currently has 181 open projects, 109 Public Access and 72 Managed. During FY18, MDMR completed 30 Public Access and 14 Managed projects.THE LEGISLATURE APPROVED THE FOLLOWING PROJECTS DURING THE 2017 SESSION FOR FUNDING IN FY18: HARRISON COUNTY JACKSON COUNTY HANCOCK COUNTY Point Cadet Marina Expansion and Shepard State Park Upgrades Project Bay St. Louis Harbor Pier 5 Water’s Edge Boardwalk (City of Biloxi) (City of Gautier) (City of Bay St. Louis) Fountain Beach Public Access, Phase 1 and 2 Dantzler Street Alignment Montjoy Creek Restoration and Drainage (City of D’Iberville) (City of Moss Point) Improvement (City of Diamondhead) Bernard and Brickyard Bayou Blueway Kayak Ocean Springs Front Beach Infrastructure Removal of Derelict Piers and Structures Launch Project (City of Gulfport) Stabilization Improvements (City of Ocean Springs) (City of Waveland)FY19 Harbor Improvements (City of Long Beach) Point Park Amenities Jourdan River Shores Canal Dredging Project (City of Pascagoula) (Hancock County Board of Supervisors)Redecking of existing piers (City of Pass Christian) Brittany Ave. Boat Launch, Parking Lot Expansion McLeod Park Bathhouse Improvements Project Museum Gulf of Mexico Fish Exhibit, Project (Jackson County Board of Supervisors) (Hancock County Board of Supervisors) Signage and Pier Improvements (Maritime and Seafood Industry Museum) Point Cadet Engineering and Development Project (City of Biloxi)17 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

20210212 $9$.97.7mmilliilolinon2021031320210414 2012 – TIDELANDS FUNDING HISTO$7R.6Ym–illion$8$.87.7mmilliilolinon20210515 2013 $9.7 milli$on9$.97.7mmilliilolinon20210616 201420210717 2015 $8.7 million $9$.95.5mmilliilolinon20210818 2016 2017 $7$.78.8mmilliilolinon $9.7 million 2018 $9.5 million $4$.47.7mmilliilolinon $7.8 million $9$.97.7mmilliilolinon $4.7 million $9.7 million – TIDELANDS PUBLIC – – TIDELANDS MANAGEMENT – ACCESS PROJECTS FUNDING PROJECTS FUNDING$2$1,72021,7C072i,t5C7yi0,t5Py0r0oP0jreocj$tes2c1,t7s02C7i,t5y0P0rojects 6 M6$i1Ms$6,c1i1.sM2$,cP1i1.sr2,,co1P8.12jrP6e,1o8rc,0oj8t6ej6ec0c0tt 141M4 17 University 171U7nUivneirvseirtsyity $21840$,M02$i08s2c00.8,00,0000 $1,145,000 $1$,114,154,050,0000 3 BOS County Projects 18 MDMR 3 B3OBSOCSoCuonutyn$tP8yr7oP3jr,e0oc0jte0scts $2,278,000 181M8DMMDRMR $8$7837,030,0000 $2$,27,287,080,0000 • Tidelands Trust Fund • 18

19 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

MARINE PATROLThe Office of Marine Patrol provides MARINE ENFORCEMENTOF FEDERAL AND STATE LAWS and the ordinances of theCommission on Marine Resources for the PROTECTION,PRESERVATION AND CONSERVATION of Mississippi’sseafood, aquatic life and associated coastal wetlandshabitats. Marine Patrol also carries out the enforcementof state and federal laws pertaining to BOATING SAFETYand provides EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE concerning thestate’s marine environment. Keith Davis Marine Patrol Chief • Office of Marine Patrol • 20

MARINE PATROL IS COMPOSED GOALS:OF THREE DIVISIONS •Implement a 2019 Marine Litter Campaign focusing on reducing marine debris andPATROL DIVISION pollutants in the Mississippi Sound.Handles the majority of service calls. The Patrol •Increase seafood retailer inspections in all 82 counties, reducing the amount ofDivision ensures the safety for all citizens while recreational sold fish into the commercial market.enjoying the Mississippi waterways. The PatrolDivision conducts boat and water safety classes, •Increase Public Safety Measures on the Mississippi Gulf Coast by participating in thehandles special events on marine waters, protects Homeland Security Port Security Agreement and increasing officer presence in themarine life and enforces seafood laws throughout Port of Gulfport and the Port of Pascagoula.the State of Mississippi with seafood retailers andrestaurants. Marine Patrol’s area of responsibility •Streamline objectives with federal and state partners to optimize budgeted resources.covers the three coastal counties expanding out 200miles offshore ensuring the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery • Implement CAPERS, a Records Management System that will allow Marine PatrolConservation and Management Act is enforced. to properly record all law enforcement activity electronically and will enhance the ability to begin the process of accreditation.INVESTIGATIVE DIVISION ACCOMPLISHMENTS:Responsible for the following units: conservationinvestigations, internal affairs, dive team, JEA • Contributed to the success of the Tails N’ Scales Program’s management of Red SnapperProgram Coordinator, BUI enforcement unit, boat through persistent enforcement efforts to manage this federal protected species.accident investigation/reconstruction, waterbornedeath investigations and inter/intra-state seafood • Increased patrols on piers and harbors through a directive patrol initiative.enforcement, including imported non-native species. • Several Marine Patrol officers were instrumental in saving lives on the water. Two notableADMINISTRATIVE DIVISION rescues were a drowning infant in an overturned kayak and the rescue of a family trapped on a sinking vessel south of Deer Island.Responsible for the following units: TrainingCoordinator, Communication’s Division, Marine Patrol • The Joint Enforcement Agreement (JEA) with NOAA was successfully accomplished throughReserve Officers, Emergency Operations Coordinator, meeting and exceeding all federal priorities established by NOAA.Grants Liaison and Community Outreach. • A reduction of boating accidents and drownings on Mississippi waters is contributed to Marine Patrol’s efforts to increase boat and water safety enforcement, as well as their direct response to these incidents. •Increased Boat and Water Safety certifications of Mississippi Gulf Coast students by 100 percent. Marine Patrol’s devotion to community outreach yielded 450 students receiving traditional in-class boating education.21 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

32,318answered and initiated OFFICERS and/or THESE PATROLS RESULTED IN THE FOLLOWING STAFF MEMBERS NUMBERS FOR CITATIONS AND WARNINGS: CALLS FOR SERVICE 1,597participated in 573 Fisheries Violations14processed 215 Boating and Water Safety Violations PUBLIC HOURS OF TRAINING 7 Boating Under the Influence (BUI) RECORDS REQUESTS 2 Wetlands Violations at a variety 32 Miscellaneous Violations of schools. 287 Courtesy Citations 4 Marine Litter CitationsTHE MARINE PATROL RESERVE UNIT NOTABLE FISHERIES VIOLATIONS:supported the agency’s objectives by contributing 8 Possession of Red Snapper in a closed season1,564 NONCOMPENSATED MAN HOURS 13 Possession of undersized Red Snapper 120 Red Snapper seized for no Tails N’ Scalesassisting with regular patrols and marine events 60 Failure to register for Tails N’ Scales 55 Possession of undersized Spotted Seatrout 27responded to 5responded to 44 Undersized Red DrumVESSEL ACCIDENTS DROWNINGSfive resulting in injuries due to a vessel accident or other water-related incident • Office of Marine Patrol • 22

23 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

MARINE FISHERIESThe Office of Marine Fisheries provides for the EFFECTIVE MANAGEMENTof the state’s COMMERCIAL AND RECREATIONAL marine fisheries,including oysters, shrimp, crabs and finfish. It includes conservationand overall management of marine resources through RESEARCHand DATA COLLECTION as modified by relevant social, economicand biological factors. Marine Fisheries uses the most appropriate methodsfor management, including but not limited to, REGULATING harvesting,habitat ENHANCEMENT, water quality MONITORING for molluscanshellfish harvesting, setting of catch limits and seasons and seafood safetyINSPECTIONS of processing and distribution facilities.Marine Fisheries is comprised of these bureaus:•ARTIFICIAL REEF•FINFISH•SEAFOOD TECHNOLOGY•SHELLFISH•SHRIMP AND CRAB Joe Jewell Director • Office of Marine Fisheries • 24

GOALS:• Use 2011 Bonnet Carré Emergency Disaster Recovery Program funds to monitor and assist the recovery of Mississippi’s commercial and recreational oyster and blue crab fisheries.• Expand the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation grant to include Mississippi-protected species coordination with our federal, state and non-governmental organization partners through a new protected species coordinator position.• Design and initiate projects for the collection and analysis of data required for population dynamics estimates and other projects related to fisheries management.• Develop scientifically based management recommendations.• Provide information transfer and liaison activities with regional fisheries management entities and other state and federal partners.• Provide technical support to the Mississippi Commission on Marine Resources in developing fishery management plans, regulatory amendments, stock assessments, regulations and technical analysis.• Provide representatives to serve on fisheries-related boards, committees, task forces and panels, as are required.ACCOMPLISHMENTS:• Published public notices for opening and closing of the commercial seasons for shrimp, oysters, Spotted Seatrout, Flounder, Red Snapper, Grouper, Red Drum and large coastal sharks.• Served on regional management committees of the Gulf States Marine Fisheries Commission (GSMFC), including Artificial Reef Task Force, Outreach Subcommittee, Menhaden Advisory Committee, White Trout Fishery Task Force, Blue Crab Task Force, Fisheries Information Network Committee, Data Management and Recreational Fishery Subcommittees, Technical Coordinating Committee, Gulf and South Atlantic Regional Panel on Aquatic Invasive Species, Southeastern Aquatic Resource Partnership and the State/Federal Fisheries Management Board. Marine Fisheries personnel also served on the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council, as well as their Red Drum and shrimp committees.• Opened a Fisheries laboratory complex which houses a wet lab, fish aging lab and harmful algal bloom lab.  Barataria Bay deployed in Fish Haven-13  Side scan of Barataria Bay below the water25 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

ARTIFICIAL REEFDirector: Travis Williams (Position effective July 1, 2018)The Artificial Reef Bureau is responsible for artificial reef development in Mississippi’s marine waters and adjacent federal waters.Reef sites that are properly located, constructed and managed can enhance the marine habitat for associated important sportfishes and other organisms. CURRENTLY THERE ARE 67 INSHORE REEFS, 15 OFFSHORE REEFS ENCOMPASSING16,000 ACRES OF WATER BOT TOM AND EIGHT RIGS-TO-REEF SITES THAT ENHANCE AND SUPPORT IMPORTANTMARINE SPECIES. Reefs are built with concrete rubble, steel-hull vessels (including barges), crushed limestone, Florida Limestone Pyramidsand Reef Balls. They can range in size from eight -10,000 acres.GOALS:•Develop and enhance nearshore and offshore reef habitats in accordance with Mississippi’s Artificial Reef Plan.•Provide the MDMR web administrator with updated coordinates of reef material, reef orientation, maps and charts so the website can be updated and maintained for the fishing community to access.•Within the framework of Mississippi’s Artificial Reef Plan, identify areas conducive to artificial reef development and enhancement - both nearshore and offshore.•Monitor artificial reef development in Mississippi’s marine waters and adjacent federal waters.•Pursue federal permits for two offshore artificial reefs.ACCOMPLISHMENTS: 10 8 JUVENILE FISH CAPTURED CREATED HABITAT AND TAGGED ON OFFSHORE REEFS in state and adjacent federal waters using4 INSHORE DEPLOYMENTS ENHANCED TWO ACRES OF EXISTING REEFS 1,349 PIECES OF DONATED CONCRETE FROM THREE LOCAL COMPANIES concrete was received in 64 deliveries 29 LIONFISH constructed a new loading removed from the reefs during the inaugural RAMP AND PIERJIMMY SANDERS MEMORIAL TO LOAD A VARIETY OF REEF MATERIALLIONFISH CHALLENGE • Office of Marine Fisheries • 26

FINFISH BUREAU Director: Matt HillTHE FINFISH BUREAU MONITORS FINFISH POPULATIONS IN STATE WATERS AND ADJACENT FEDERAL WATERSAND PROVIDES SCIENTIFIC INFORMATION, including biological life history and catch statistics, for commercial andrecreational finfish for effective management and the recently NOAA-certified Tails N’ Scales electronic reporting system.GOALS:• Monitor finfish populations through two independent sampling methods: Inter-jurisdictional and Fisheries Assessment and Monitoring (IJ-FAM).•Develop and coordinate, with other state and federal agencies, independent projects on ecological requirements and biological life history information on recreational and ecological important finfish species. These projects include Sport Fish studies and Sport Fish tag and release in conjunction with the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory (GCRL).• Conserve and revitalize marine finfish and supporting habitats within optimal levels using relevant social, economic and biological factors.• Provide scientific information, including biological life history and catch statistics, for commercial and recreational finfish for effective management.ACCOMPLISHMENTS:• Provided management information through an ongoing commercial fisheries statistics program. Data is collected monthly from dealers’ reported catch.• Collected catch and effort information on the recreational sector in cooperation with the GSMFC through monthly MRIP surveys.• Continued to collect data on Red Snapper harvest and angler effort for the 2017 and 2018 recreational Red Snapper seasons.• Collected fishery independent data on finfish populations through a combination of gill net and trawl samples in Mississippi’s major estuaries and bays.• Developed several projects in cooperation with GCRL to obtain information on life history parameters and essential fish habitat of recreational important finfish.• Worked on a multi-year grant through the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to assess reef fish species in conjunction with GCRL.• Partnered with GCRL for a Sport Fish Studies program in Mississippi coastal waters. Monitored Spotted Seatrout, Red Drum and shark species.• Partnered with GCRL for a Sport Fish Tag and Release program for Cobia and Tripletail. This year, a total of 167 Cobia were tagged and 16 of those recaptured. A total of 334 Tripletail were also caught and 50 recaptured.– SPORT FISH TAG AND RELEASE PROGRAM FOR COBIA AND TRIPLETAIL –TAGGED 334 167 50 TRIPLETAIL RECAPTURED COBIA 1627 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

FISHERY SAMPLING: DEPENDENT MARINE RECREATIONAL INFORMATION PROGRAM GOALS:TRIP TICKETGOALS: • Conduct MRIP surveys in Mississippi for shore, charter and private fishing modes• Collect commercial fisheries landings and catch data for Mississippi • Provide a timely and reliable database on marine in a timely manner. recreationally fishing activity. • Identify notable changes in recreational catch and effort trends.• Continue the trip-ticket program for all fisheries in which dealers • Collect biological information on selected recreational important and/or fishermen submit paper or electronic trip tickets on a monthly basis. finfish species. Data are then scanned into a database and transferred to the GSMFC • Evaluate the long-term implications of management measures. Finfish Information Network. ACCOMPLISHMENTS:• Implement a trip-ticket program for all fisheries. • Collected recreational fisheries information daily through surveying moreACCOMPLISHMENTS: than 2,200 recreational fishermen. The information gathered from the survey provides a continuous standardized database of marine recreational catch,• Collected, processed and submitted fisheries landings data to the National effort and participation. Marine Fisheries Service in accordance with established data handling •Conducted weekly telephone interviews of charter boat operators procedures. Fisheries landings data are an important part of the in Mississippi to obtain more precise fishing effort estimates for management process, both as an indicator of potential population changes the for-hire sector. and as a gauge of success of existing fisheries regulations and practices. • Office of Marine Fisheries • 28• Collected biological data for selected commercially important finfish species from the major seafood dealers along the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The information is used in the development of various fishery management plans at the state and regional levels• Collected information on selected pelagic and reef fish species. This information is submitted to National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) for inclusion in its Trip Information System. Both state and federal fisheries managers use this data to properly manage these valuable resources.

TAILS N’ SCALESGOALS:• Continue to collect recreational Red Snapper harvest and effort data through MDMR’s electronic application.• Continue to improve functionality and ease-of-use for angler reporting along with adding new features to capture data on Red Snapper discards.ACCOMPLISHMENTS:• Tails N’ Scales completed the certification process and became the second program to have its survey design accepted by NOAA Fisheries following Louisiana. The reporting system was officially certified by NOAA in June of 2018.•MDMR submitted an Exempted Fishing Permit application to the NMFS to qualify for a test state-based recreational Red Snapper management program. After developing a proposal for a pilot study, Mississippi was one of four Gulf States that was issued a permit that would allow us to set our own season for private recreational anglers and state charter for-hire vessels.•Current trip compliance rates for the private recreational and for-hire sectors are 93 percent and 100 percent, respectively. Observed increases in compliance in the private recreational and charter for-hire sectors illustrates the increasing success of the program, along with the precision of harvest estimates. – TAILS N’ SCALES REPORTING COMPLIANCE – For-hire Private Recreational10080604020 0 2016 2017 201829 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

FISHERY SAMPLING: INDEPENDENTINTERJURISDICTIONAL FISHERIES ASSESSMENT AND MONITORINGGOALS:•Monitor finfish populations through fishery-independent sampling methods.•Collect data to maintain a consistent database for the monitoring of the relative abundance and size distribution of the finfish populations in coastal Mississippi waters.• Collect hydrological and climatological data at sampling stations.ACCOMPLISHMENTS:• Each month, eight stations were sampled, including four fixed sites (Pascagoula and Pearl River) and four randomly selected sites within the Grand Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, Biloxi Back Bay, St. Louis Bay and the Pascagoula River.• All data collected during these surveys are vital to the management of multiple recreational and commercial important species, as this survey provides estimates of length-at-age, sex ratios and indexes of abundance.RED DRUM ASSESSMENTGOALS:•Target and obtain data on Red Drum between three and five years old to develop an accurate escapement rate as well as an age/length key.•Collect supplementary samples of Red Drum from the for-hire charter industry and cooperating recreational fishermen.•Design and implement an acoustic telemetry project to track the movements of Red Drum in the Biloxi Bay area.ACCOMPLISHMENTS:•Collected 151 Red Drum samples throughout the year from gill nets, recreational anglers and for-hire charter captains. These samples help fisheries scientists better understand length-at-age and age-at-maturity of Red Drum.•Expanded the acoustic telemetry array, which consists of 33 acoustic receivers within the project area. The acoustic receivers continue to detect tagged Red Drum that are within the detection range. CURRENTLY 51 RED DRUM HAVE BEEN TAGGED WITH BLUE EXTERNAL DART TAGS AND INTERNAL ACOUSTIC TRANSMITTERS. The Finfish Bureau plans to tag additional Red Drum through the end of 2018. • Office of Marine Fisheries • 30

SALTWATER STATE RECORDS GULF FLOUNDER 1 lb 2.4 oz OYSTER TOADFISH 3 lbs 2oz Christopher Barlow Sherman RobertsJULY 3, 2017 JULY 3, 2017 MARCH 4, 2018 MARCH 9, 2018 BULL SHARK 354 lbs 4 oz SLIPPERY WRASSE 6.88 oz Brett Rutledge Myles Fallo, 11 (youth division)31 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

ALMACO JACK 35 lbs 2.4 oz GRAYSBY 1 lb 9.93 oz Lonnie Carroll Matt GlennAPRIL 2, 2018 APRIL 12, 2018 MAY 30, 2018 JUNE 17, 2018 SILVER PERCH 2.8 oz HARDHEAD CATFISH 1 lb 12.97 ozMargaret Schindler, 8 (youth division) Greyson Borries, 3 (youth division) • Office of Marine Fisheries • 32

SEAFOOD TECHNOLOGY BUREAU Director: Ruth Alviola-PosadasThe Seafood Technology Bureau is the REGULATORY AUTHORITY FOR MISSISSIPPI’S SEAFOOD INDUSTRY and ensuresthat commercial seafood is processed and prepared safely for the consumer market.GOALS:•Conduct regulatory inspections of shellfish processing and transporting facilities to determine compliance with state and federal sanitation and health safety regulations.•Ensure that suitable sanitary conditions exist for processing and distributing seafood in Mississippi.•Assist the seafood industry in compliance with sanitation rules and regulations and provide technical assistance to the Mississippi seafood industry.•Provide technical advice to the Mississippi seafood processing industry to aid in compliance with seafood sanitation and health safety regulations.•Provide technical advice to the seafood processing industry regarding new technologies and new products that provide added value, new markets, employment opportunities and economic enhancement for the seafood industry.•Provide technical advice to those interested in aquaculture and aid in expanding economic and employment opportunities.•Provide technical expertise in investigating reports of food-borne illness and certifying product recalls and embargoes according to state and federal instituted protocols and procedures.•Undertake research projects in line with seafood technical surveys, seafood safety education and sanitation training in line with the goals of the Mississippi seafood industry to disseminate information and educate consumers and food handlers in the seafood industry.•Provide advice and technical support for the Mississippi Department of Agriculture and Commerce regarding aquaculture regulatory matters. Seafood Technology Director Ruth Posadas checks  Seafood Officers Jessica Rankin and Jeff Davis lead a hands-on exercise  Seafood Officer Jeff Davis inspects one of the shrimp the water and inside temperature of the cooked crab. as part of the Basic Seafood HACCP Training. processing facilities in Biloxi, Mississippi.33 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

ACCOMPLISHMENTS:•Conducted three Basic Seafood Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) workshops with 59 students enrolled. It was provided free of charge to any qualified Mississippi resident. The workshops were made possible through a grant from the Mississippi Tideland’s Trust Fund Program.•Responded to 4,750 technical assistance requests from the public, seafood industry and other state and federal agencies.•Assisted development of food safety systems for newly certified dealers and the Mississippi seafood industry (eight flow charts, eight hazard analyses, 30 HACCP Plans and 25 individual labels for CFR compliance on labeling issues).•Conducted equipment survey for 35 facilities with 463 units consisting of coolers, freezers, ice machines, trucks, post-harvest process (PHP) equipment and Shell Buy Back Program survey.•Conducted 27 hands-on mock recall exercises every quarter on selected dealers and processors to prepare them for any trace-back investigations. – 10 YEAR DATA RESEARCH PROJECT RESULTS – Certified processors in the seafood industry in Mississippi 3,822 INSPECTIONS 2,390 VIOLATIONS – 77 TOTAL SEAFOOD SANITATION/ PROCESSING CERTIFICATES – These 77 permits represent 539 inspected seafood units. 19 22 36 • Office of Marine Fisheries • 34

SHELLFISH BUREAUDirector: Erik BroussardTHE SHELLFISH BUREAU MANAGES AND ENHANCES MISSISSIPPI’S MARINE SHELLFISH RESOURCES.This bureau also maintains compliance with the Interstate Shellfish Sanitation Conference’s National Shellfish SanitationProgram (ISSC/NSSP) Model Ordinance requirements for shellfish-growing waters.GOALS: •Use state resources to cultivate oyster reefs as needed. •Deploy cultch materials to restore public oyster reefs.•Maintain program compliance with the NSSP to allow the safe harvest •Deposit oyster cultch material. of oysters from Mississippi waters. •Complete annual assessment of health and status of public oyster reefs. •Work with other agencies to improve water quality.•Map and survey public oyster reefs for potential cultivation and •Educate oyster harvesters and the public on shellfish issues, oyster cultch planting sites. handling and regulations involving harvesting practices.•Collect water samples in all oyster reef areas and analyze them for fecal coliform content.•Classify oyster-growing areas using data collected from water samples. – MISSISSIPPI OYSTER LANDING (SACKS) – 43,7032012 66 58,26720132014 26,05520152016 40,3572017 40,165 10,15435 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

ACCOMPLISHMENTS: Trained and certified IN AN EFFORT TO ENHANCE, PROTECT AND CONSERVE MISSISSIPPI’S OYSTER RESOURCES,Fall 2017 & Spring 2018 585 THE COMMISSION ON MARINE RESOURCES APPROVED THE FOLLOWING REVISIONS TO THE28,063 CUBIC YARDS OYSTER LICENSE OYSTER REGULATIONS FOR FY18. CULTCH MATERIAL HOLDERS IN TITLE 22 PART 1 CHAPTER 7planted across 306 acres in the western Basic oyster handling •Hand dredge specifications were defined. •The method of taking oysters by basket dredgeMISSISSIPPI SOUND Hygiene was banned. MDMR developed the Bag Dredge Exchange Program which identified 143 potential Regulations involving participants eligible for an exchange at no cost. harvesting practices A total of 63 oystermen participated in this program. RV Conservationist used to restore 5 acres of TITLE 22 PART 1 CHAPTER 17 •Area VI was upwardly reclassified to includeHISTORIC OYSTER REEFS IN BILOXI BAY Area VI “B.” It was also upgraded to conditionally approved waters which would allow OysterCommercial oyster fishermen 64 DREDGE TOWS Aquaculture further offshore. 464 sq. meter limits DIVES TITLE 22 PART 1 CHAPTER 18 287 RANDOMLY •Redefined the classification and description 15 DAILY SACKS SELECTED LOCATIONS of Shellfish Growing Waters in Area VI “B” FOR TONGING to include the southern portion of Area VI. 528yielded SAMPLES20 DAILY SACKS COLLECTED • Office of Marine Fisheries • 36 FOR DREDGING FROM PUBLIC OYSTER REEFS 2,602reported COMBINED TRIPS FOR TONGERS & DREDGERS

SHRIMP AND CRAB BUREAU Director: Rick BurrisTHE SHRIMP AND CRAB BUREAU CONSERVES AND REVITALIZES MISSISSIPPI’S SHRIMP AND CRABRESOURCE AND SUPPORTS HABITAT to ensure balanced and sustained use. It maintains stewardship of living marineresources for commercial and recreational fisheries at optimal levels as modified by social, economic and biological factors.GOALS:•Manage the state’s commercial and recreational shrimp and crab fisheries and work with other state agencies, as well as regional and federal fishery management authorities.•Monitor and assess the shrimp and crab fisheries; coordinate the Mississippi Crab Task Force; issue Scientific Collection Permits; inspect and report on the live-bait shrimp industry; coordinate grants with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), the Interjurisdictional Fisheries Monitoring Program, the Derelict Crab Trap Removal Program and the Mississippi Bonnet Carré Fisheries Disaster Recovery Program for the Oyster and Blue Crab Fisheries from NOAA Fisheries.•Set the seasons, gear regulations and implementation of other related management measures as required.•Work cooperatively with federal agencies, including NMFS, USFWS, GSMFC, Gulf of Mexico Fisheries Management Council and the U.S. Geological Survey. Cooperating state agencies include GCRL, MDEQ, MDWFP and the Mississippi State University Coastal Research and Extension Center, as well as neighboring state marine resource management agencies and the Institute for Marine Mammal Studies.ACCOMPLISHMENTS: Distributed newsletters to MS Commercial COLLECTED 299Collected approximately HYDROLOGICAL DATA TRAWL SAMPLES14515CRAB FISHERMEN AND SHRIMPERS as part of the SHRIMPING THE from the surface and bottom SOUND NEWSLETTERS at all trawl sampling stations SHRIMP MONITORING 15 0 BLUE CRAB BEACON and NEWSLETTERS and crab trap sets. INTERJURISDICTIONAL FISHERIES MONITORING PROGRAMConducted 53 CRAB TRAP SURVEYS consisting of 504 INDIVIDUAL TRAPS in Bay St. Louis, Biloxi Bay and the lower Pascagoula River to collect pertinentcatch-per-unit-e ort (CPUE), sex, maturity and bycatch data on the recreational blue crab fishery37 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

•Operated the Real-Time Hydrological 1,200,000 – MS BLUE CRAB LANDINGS – $1,500,000 Monitoring program at 10 stations in $1,200,000 Mississippi waters and adjacent tributaries. 1,000,000 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 $900,000 The data is updated in 15-minute intervals and LBS. DOLLARS $600,000 is available to the public and resource 800,000 $300,000 managers at POUNDS $0•Worked with crab fishermen to remove marine 600,000 debris, including 123 derelict traps using both vessel shoreline surveys and side-scan sonar 400,000 surveys for submerged traps. 200,000•Coordinated the USFWS Sport Fish Restoration Grants. Current projects include Mississippi 0 Artificial Reef Program, Mississippi Coastal 2010 Sport Fish Studies, Sport Fish Tag and Release in Mississippi Coastal Waters and Adjacent 15,000,000 – HEAD ON ALL SHRIMP SPECIES LANDINGS – Gulf of Mexico, Assessment of Red Drum Stock $25,000,000 in Mississippi Coastal Waters. 12,000,000 $20,000,000•Continued the Mississippi Crab Task Force to encourage the various marine resource user 9,000,000 $15,000,000 groups to provide input and voice concerns on POUNDS $10,000,000 fishery management and research activities. The task force has worked in the ongoing efforts 6,000,000 and coordination of the Derelict Crab Trap Removal Program, the recommendation 3,000,000 $5,000,000 of regulatory actions and the fisheries monitoring programs.•Implemented the NOAA Fisheries Mississippi Bonnet Carré Fisheries Disaster Recovery Program for the Oyster and Blue Crab fisheries.•Issued 44 special permits, including 42 scientific research permits, one experimental gear and one brood stock collection permit. 0 $0 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 LBS. DOLLARS • Office of Marine Fisheries • 38

39 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

COASTAL RESTORATION & RESILIENCYThe Office of Coastal Restoration and Resiliency was established by the MississippiLegislature in 2014. Its primary purpose is to develop a long-range, multi-statestrategy to restore Mississippi coastal resources and to provide for healthy andresilient communities and economies in the coastal area.It is comprised of the following programs:•MISSISSIPPI GULF COAST NATIONAL HERITAGE AREA•RESTORATION COORDINATION TEAM•COAST-WIDE RESTORATION PLANNING•BOATING INFRASTRUCTURE•CLEAN VESSEL ACT•BOAT ACCESS•GULF OF MEXICO ALLIANCEThe office also collaborates with other agencies in George RamseurAlabama and Louisiana, as well as federal agencies Directorand non-governmental organizations. These partnershipswork to assist with the planning, permitting andimplementation of major coastal restoration projectsfocused on habitat, fisheries and structural orphysically protective resiliency projects. • Coastal Restoration and Resiliency • 40

GOALS:• Build capacity of state and local governments to better manage and protect coastal communities and marine resources for Mississippi.• Promote the understanding of coastal risks and the availability of resiliency and restoration tools that support local, regional, national and international efforts related to protecting and/or improving cultural, natural and water resources along with the economic health within the Gulf of Mexico.• Promote the acquisition, adaptation, use of habitat assessment data, mitigation and restoration as strategies to preserve heritage, conserve natural resources and support economic viability of the coast.• Improve public familiarity with cultural and habitat resources, such as living shorelines in coastal communities, better communication about habitat restoration, water quality and storm-water management.•Continue the development of Coast-wide Restoration Planning by gathering data, maximizing resources and pursuing funding and partnership opportunities.•Continue to build relationships with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Mobile District and their MS Coastal Improvements Program Barrier Island Project in the development of long term maintenance and new restoration options for Mississippi’s primary barrier system. Assessment, management and restoration of this barrier are key to us reaching our goals for longterm fisheries resources and resiliency.ACCOMPLISHMENTS:•The Round Island project continues to exceed expectations more than a year and a half after initial construction was completed. This new island habitat is home to one of the largest nesting shorebird colonies in the country, providing a key refuge for least terns and other species during Hurricane Nate. (Photo: bottom right)•During mid-FY18, the project gained popularity among fishermen, allowing Redfish enthusiasts to take advantage of access provided by a 2 ft. high tide. (Photo: left)•New marsh plantings are thriving. When full vegetation is reached, it will provide nurseries for shrimp, crab and sport fish, which will lead to more fishing opportunities. (Photo: top right)41 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

COAST-WIDE RESTORATION PLANNING This ongoing process seeks to better define the functional limits of our coastal estuary system and evaluate its health and productivity into the future. It broadens the focus beyond the Mississippi Sound to what is now defined as the Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama Coastal System (LMACS). Objectives supported by the LMACS include the development of data and modeling to thoroughly assess the system and evaluate restoration concepts and strategies. The LMACS will give Mississippi leverage to maximum benefits from collaborative restoration actions with adjoining states.RESTORATION COORDINATION TEAMThis team consists of MDMR and MDEQ employees who coordinate the implementation of restoration projects with funds from the BP oil disaster. Revenue streamsinclude RESTORE, Natural Resource Damage Assessment and National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.BOAT ACCESS PROGRAMThis program provides funds to coastal entities for the installation and renovation of boat ramps and kayak launches. • Coastal Restoration and Resiliency • 42

BOATING INFRASTRUCTURE GRANT PROGRAMThis program provides funding for the construction, renovation and maintenance of public and private boating infrastructure, such as piers and boat docks.This innovative campaign provides transient boaters with unique access to Mississippi waterways.ACCOMPLISHMENTS:• Received a $100,000 grant to improve and renovate the transient boat docks at the Bay St. Louis Marina.CLEAN VESSEL ACTThe Act provides funds throughout the state to harbors and marinas to install pump out stations at their facilities.ACCOMPLISHMENTS:• Completed the installation of two pump-out stations: Smithville Marina and Bay Springs Marina for a total of $18,000.GULF OF MEXICO ALLIANCEThis is a partnership of the five Gulf States, formed with the goal of significantly increasing regional collaboration to enhance the ecological and economic health of theGulf of Mexico. The Alliance identified the following initial priority issues: water quality; wetlands and coastal conservation and restoration; environmental education,identification and characterization of Gulf habitats; reducing nutrient inputs to coastal ecosystems and coastal community resiliency.ACCOMPLISHMENTS: GfuUnLdFedStThAreRe 3 CLEAN & RESILIENT MARINAS PROJECTS designated in LONG BEACH, PASS CHRISTIAN AND GULFPORT HARBORS $6 0 Kregion-wide for a total of MS HOMEOWNER’S HANDBOOK updated in coordination with a new MY COAST APP43 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

MISSISSIPPI GULF COAST NATIONAL HERITAGE AREAThe Mississippi Gulf Coast National Heritage Area Program (MGCNHA) is funded by the National Park Service and the State of Mississippi. It supports economic growth inthe state’s lower six counties by focusing on the natural, cultural and historical resources in the Mississippi Heritage Area.GOALS:• Promote the area’s recreational and historical resources through activities and partnerships that celebrate the area’s unique history, people, traditions and landscapes.• Produce and distribute a quarterly newsletter and education materials highlighting heritage-related events and projects.• Promote Gulf Coast Outpost, a voluntary program that recognizes nature-based tourism businesses and gives them access to a business resource toolkit.• Continue support of Whole Places, a fourth- and fifth-grade education curriculum centered around cultural and natural resource destinations.• Continue managing the Charnley-Norwood House in Ocean Springs, a Louis Sullivan and Frank Lloyd Wright design.•Complete projects from 14 grants totaling $380,800.ACCOMPLISHMENTS:•Released new branding for the Heritage Area, including a new logo, website and kiosks with information about the program.•Released the Nature-Based Tourism Management Plan for Coastal Mississippi and submitted a proposal for implementation through MDEQ.• Established 37 National Park Service passport stamp locations within the Gulf Coast’s Heritage Area.•Certified six nature-based businesses into the Gulf Coast Outpost program.•The French Colonial Gardens received the Mississippi Heritage Trust for Archeology award as the second oldest European cemetery in the nation and the oldest in the southern region of the United States.•Released the Blueways Design Guide to educate and encourage visitors and local residents to explore MGCNHA’s 10 designated blueways. Moran Site in Biloxi, MS • Coastal Restoration and Resiliency • 44

45 • Mississippi department of marine resources •

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