News / Industry News & Events / An Update on Aquatic Judicial Issues and Research (12/21/17)

An Update on Aquatic Judicial Issues and Research


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Early last month, the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council (PIJAC) held a town hall at Aquatic Experience to discuss major issues facing the aquatics trade. Two of the issues concerned court decisions against fishers in Hawaii and a cyanide study commissioned by PIJAC.

The major Hawaii update since Aquatic Experience is that a judge ruled against PIJAC and the fishers regarding a stay on a previous courts declaration that small mesh net fishing licenses currently in use are illegal. In other words, the most recent decision by the court said that existing permits are not valid. PIJAC, the fishers, and other allies are considering next steps.

This latest decision is the third to go against ornamental fishers. The first, by the Hawaii Supreme Court, ruled that the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) must comply with Hawaii Environmental Protection Act (HEPA) requirements when issuing the licenses. A lower court then ruled that current licenses are not valid. The stay rejection was the most recent decision. This fight will be extraordinarily expensivewe expect costs to easily top $200,000 just to help Hawaiis fishersso we are continuing to reach out to the industry to contribute.

On the cyanide front, the literature review is complete. We continue to seek a cost-effective and reliable way to detect the illegal use of cyanide in the taking of aquarium fish. PIJACs Aquatics Committee discussed next steps on our monthly call this past Wednesday.

Stay tuned