Gov. DeSantis highlights slightly longer red snapper fishing season in Florida

57-day combined season opens June 17

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis holds news conference in Panhandle. (Copyright 2022 by WKMG ClickOrlando - All rights reserved.)

DESTIN, Fla. – Gov. Ron DeSantis on Thursday held a news conference at Destin Harbor Boardwalk in Okaloosa County to highlight an upcoming 57-day Gulf red snapper fishing season in Florida.

Joined by Eric Sutton, executive director of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, DeSantis said 45 consecutive days in the summer and 12 more days in the fall will make for the longest combined season ever available to anglers since state management began.

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The 2021 Gulf red snapper summer fishing season, lacking its fall counterpart, lasted 55 consecutive days between June 4 and July 28, according to FWC. The 2022 season will overlap Father’s Day, Independence Day, Veterans Day and Thanksgiving weekends, what DeSantis said would aid in “expanded red snapper opportunities.”

“So these additional days of fishing means that families can take advantage of the holiday weekends to have a great time off of Florida’s coast and places like Destin, we know that they love the red snapper here in Destin and why not? I mean, it’s a great, great thing. This has been going on since the since the 1800s,” DeSantis said. “We appreciate what it means to the culture of our state, we appreciate what it means to the economy of our state.”

The 2022 season will open in the summer June 17 and run consecutively until July 31, DeSantis said.

The dates of the 12-day long fall portion are as follows:

  • October 8-9
  • October 15-16
  • October 22-23
  • November 11-13
  • November 25-27

The announcement comes one day after a congressional map submitted by DeSantis’ office was approved by the state Senate in a special session following the governor’s vetoes of maps approved during the regular session. A 24-15 party-line vote advanced the map, which could shift Florida’s current representation from 16 Republicans and 11 Democrats to 20-8 respectively as the state is adding a 28th congressional district due to population growth.

The state House is expected to approve the map Thursday and send it back to the governor.

DeSantis on Tuesday announced at a news conference in The Villages that the special session would include a bill to end the Reedy Creek Improvement District, along with five other districts enacted before 1968. Created by state lawmakers in 1967, the district allows Walt Disney World to act as its own government in areas of Orange and Osceola counties, footing the bill for government services such as zoning, fire protection, utilities and infrastructure.

The Reedy Creek Improvement District also carries with it a $977,215,801 bond debt, which state Senate Minority Leader Gary Farmer, D-Fort Lauderdale, warned would be transferred to Orange and Osceola counties if the bill, as written, becomes law.

“So this is not supposition, this is not conjecture, this is Florida law that says those 1.7 million people are going to have to pick up this bill,” Farmer said.

The state Senate approved the bill Wednesday in a largely party-line vote, with all Democrats and one Republican voting against it. The Florida House is scheduled to vote on the bill Thursday.

About the Author:

Brandon, a UCF grad, joined the ClickOrlando team in November 2021. Before joining News 6, Brandon worked at WDBO.