New start date announced for marine protected areas

The California Department of Fish and Game announced Friday that the new start date for implementation of marine protected areas (MPAs) in Southern California will be Jan. 1.

Laguna Beach waters are part of the Southern California coastal area, extending down to the Mexican border, that will be effected by the MPAs.

Under the California Marine Life Protection Act, fishing will be banned or restricted in 49 marine protected areas to protect sea life and replenish depleted fish populations, according to a Los Angeles Times article.

The previous starting date of Oct. 1 was pushed back because the Office of Administrative Law wanted more time to review and approve the marine closure regulations.

The later start date will also give the DFG more time to get the word out on what the new regulations will mean to fishers and divers.

For more information, visit http://www.dfg.ca.gov/mlpa/southcoast.asp.

—Kelly Parker

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