Fishing in several Central Coast marine reserves could be outlawed or restricted by the State Fish and Game Commission by as early as this summer. Three popular San Luis Obispo County fishing holes Piedras Blancas in San Simeon, Point Buchon by Diablo Canyon, and an unnamed spot in Cambria would no longer allow fishing if the prohibition is passed.
The proposed prohibition would encompass 204 square miles, stretching from Vandenberg Air Force Base to San Mateo County, with 94 square miles deemed unlawful to fish in, according to California Department of Fish and Game Environmental Program Manager John Ugoretz. The remaining areas will allow forms of recreational and commercial fishing.
Defiance of fishing in the restricted areas would be considered a misdemeanor, and violators would face up to 30 days in jail and a $1,000 fine.
The Fish and Game Commission will be reviewing the plans for the ban on April 13 in Bodega Bay to decide on regulations of the marine protected areas on the Central Coast. If they're approved, the ban will go into effect this summer. The reserves would be the first of their kind along the California coastline.