Maryland and Virginia Reciprocal License Agreement

Annapolis, MD – New for 2009, Maryland and Virginia have entered
into a reciprocal agreement honoring certain fishing guide licenses
in both states’ waters. Maryland will honor the Virginia Class A
Fishing Guide License in Maryland tidal waters and Virginia will
honor both the Maryland Resident Fishing Guide License and the
Maryland Nonresident Fishing Guide License in Virginia tidal
salt-waters. These license holders are automatically entitled to
take advantage of the reciprocal agreement without any additional
fees.

“Maryland and Virginia share a common set of fisheries
management and water quality goals and are interested in expanding
fishing opportunities for our fishermen, said Harley Speir,
Assistant Director of Policy and Regulatory Division for DNR
Fisheries Service. “This reciprocal agreement will give each
state’s fishermen the opportunity for unique fishing experiences in
the other state’s waters.”

Maryland Fishing Guides that wish to fish in Virginia must apply
for the free Fishing Guide Reciprocity Permit for Virginia.
Application forms are available on the Virginia Marine Resources
Commission’s (VMRC) website at www.mrc.virginia.gov/forms/.
Along with the application, the captain must provide a copy of
their current Maryland Fishing Guide License (or TFL) and a copy of
their U.S. Coast Guard license to carry passengers for hire
(Captain’s License). Those fishing guides that wish to participate
in the Virginia striped bass fishery should apply for the free
striped bass permit at the same time. For questions about the
Fishing Guide Reciprocity Permit, please contact Sonya Davis at
757-247-8155 or sonya.davis@mrc.virginia.gov.

Virginia Fishing Guides that wish to fish in Maryland must apply
for the free Fishing Guide Reciprocity Permit for Maryland.
Application forms are available on the Maryland Department of
Natural Resources (DNR) website www.dnr.maryland.gov/fisheries/.
Along with the application, the captain must provide a copy of
their current Virginia Class A Fishing Guide License and a copy of
their U.S. Coast Guard license to carry passengers for hire
(Captain’s License). The application and attachments may be mailed
to Connie Lewis or Belinda Gray at Maryland DNR Fisheries Service,
Tawes Building, 580 Taylor Avenue, Annapolis, Md 21401. You may ask
them questions at either clewis@dnr.state.md.us or
bgray@dnr.state.md.us or
410-260-8296.

Maryland and Virginia fishing guides with these licenses and
reciprocal permits may guide fishing trips in Maryland and Virginia
waters as long as their customers are also licensed in either
Maryland or Virginia. An earlier reciprocal agreement between
Maryland and Virginia honors the Maryland and Virginia sport
fishing boat licenses that cover all persons fishing on a charter
boat or head boat in both Maryland and Virginia waters. Therefore,
in most cases, fishing guides will not be required to obtain any
additional licenses for their customers. All required licenses must
be in the possession of the fishing guide during any fishing
trip.

Fishing guides must report their catch to the appropriate
jurisdiction. Fish caught in Maryland need to be reported to the
Maryland DNR on a form provided by the Maryland DNR. Fish
(currently, only striped bass) caught in Virginia need to be
reported to the VMRC on a form provided by the VMRC. Fishing guides
must obtain the appropriate form from the relevant agency to report
their catch. These forms are available upon request , along with
the Fishing Guide Reciprocity Permit, from VMRC and Maryland
DNR.

Maryland catch reports must be submitted to Connie Lewis by mail
within 15 days following the end of a month. Virginia catch reports
(currently, only striped bass) must be submitted to the Plans and
Statistics Department at the VMRC, 2600 Washington Avenue, 3rd
Floor Newport News, VA 23607 within 15 days of the close of any
open striped bass season (6). Fishing Guides with any questions
should contact Connie Lewis at the Maryland DNR or Bethany Eden at
the VMRC by phone at 757-247-2116 or by email at bethany.eden@mrc.virginia.gov.

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