October 4, 2006, Houston, TX- RFA is proud to announce the formation of an all-star TX Board of Directors. This diverse group of individuals will be leading the charge to create the Texas Great Barrier Reef Project (TGBRP).
The TGBRP will be the world’s largest artificial reef program, of which will create an artificial reefing corridor spanning the entire length of the Texas coast. The reef will be positioned in state waters from 7.5 to 8.5 miles off of the beach varying 40-90 ft in depth. The TGBRP will extend from Port Isabel to Sabine Pass, and be divided into 5 segments due to shipping lanes.
“This was a vision of RFA-TX board members and will prove to be the conservation move of the century affecting numerous species,” states Jim Smarr, RFA-TX State Chairman. Up to 4,000 artificial reefs per year will be deployed in an effort to provide Essential Fish Habitat (EFH) for red snapper and a multitude of other sportfish species important to our coastal economies including kingfish, grouper, ling, dorado, redfish, tarpon, flounder, sea trout, sailfish and mahi-mahi.
“The TGBR is like the second wall on the Alamo, when the first wall falls, i.e. NMFS, it reduces our snapper limits down to one, then we Texans will rally behind TGBR and make our stand,” states Tom Hilton, RFA-TX. “We intend to illustrate to our federal fisheries managers that with a proactive artificial reefing program, we will be able to produce more snapper annually in four years than the TAC in the entire Gulf of Mexico.”
RFA is requesting all fishermen who enjoy fishing Texas waters to help and join RFA-TX in promoting and funding this remarkable project. “After leaving the Houston meeting, I am very excited with this dynamic group of talented and dedicated individuals who will make Texas a better place for fish and fishermen,” states Jim Donofrio, RFA Executive Director.
The new board consists of State Chairman, Jim Smarr; Membership Chairman, Mikel Stapleton and Tom Hilton; Media Chairman, Dan Bulla; Treasury and Access Committee, Buddy Wheeler and Jerry Wheeler; Randy Davis, Charlie Everts, Bobby Grumbles, Tom Hilton, Steve Morris, Chris Pratka, Mark Schweitzer, Chris Thompson, Chuck Tylka, Ann Appling and Hefner Appling.
To learn more on the TGBRP, visit http://www.texasgreatbarrierreef.com and watch the Fox 29 News clip at: