MANHATTAN BEACH (CBSLA.com) — The Manhattan Beach City Council voted Tuesday to lift a ban on fishing off the pier after meeting to discuss what could have become a permanent ban on fishing from the city’s pier.
By September, fishing will once again be allowed from the Manhattan Beach Pier.
Pier fishing was temporarily banned from the Manhattan Beach Pier after swimmer Steve Robles was bitten by a shark July 5, which had been snagged by a man fishing off the pier.
Robles was at the council meeting and shared his sentiments about the ruling.
“Most likely, this shark and any other shark is not going to want anything to do with people, as long as there’s responsible activity of the fishermen that can be accountable in a responsible way,” Robles said. “This should never happen again.”
After an extension of the ban set to last through summer, the City Council began considering proposals of whether or not to make the ban permanent.
The ban had originally been temporary because the city does not possess the power to regulate fishing, which is protected by the California constitution.
However, those who fish off the nearby Hermosa Beach Pier had begun complaining that fishermen from Manhattan Beach are going to Hermosa, which had resulted in overcrowding.
That overcrowding should now be alleviated by the council’s ruling. However, the council did include specific ordinances to protect swimmers and surfers.
“No chumming is allowed, no cleaning of the fish on the pier, a certain type of line, a monofilament line, has to be used, a certain sized hook has to be used,” Manhattan Beach Mayor Amy Howorth said. “So, we are hoping to discourage the type of fisherman or woman who might be trying to illegally hook great white sharks.”
Robles says he hopes the city will work to create a marine-protection zone near the pier, as the number of shark sightings continues to rise.