Tag Archives: House Natural Resources Committee

As I see It: More US action required on New England fishery – Congressman Raúl M. Grijalva

On March 30, Carlos Rafael – the infamous “Codfather” of New Bedford, Massachusetts – pleaded guilty to federal fraud charges.,,, His fraud in mislabeling nearly 800,000 pounds of fish to evade quotas on cod, flounder and sole was so massive that scientific studies using the misreported landings may have to be scrapped, adding additional uncertainty to a fishery that has been teetering on the edge of complete collapse for decades.,,, The Fisheries Service must also start saying ‘no’ to the New England Fishery Management Council, a regional regulatory body that includes many industry representatives.,,,It’s time to end the convenient and false narratives that blame science-based fisheries regulations and ocean conservation initiatives, such as the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument on the edge of the continental shelf off Cape Cod, for problems they did not create. Click here to read the op-ed 09:41

Insults and heated rhetoric fly before House Natural Resources Committee red snapper hearing

A charter boat captain from Florida has angered commercial fishermen by comparing them to “old-time” plantation owners and sharecroppers in prepared testimony to Congress. Bob Zales is scheduled to appear before the today to testify about a bill that would allow states to manage the Gulf of Mexico’s red snapper fishery. H.R. 3094 is a controversial bill on a controversial issue — one that has pitted commercial fishermen against recreational anglers and some charter boat captains. Read the rest here 12:26

House Committee approves territorial waters protection

A bill that includes an amendment by Congresswoman Aumua Amata for protection of territorial waters from federal regulations has been approved by the House Natural Resources Committee. The congresswoman’s amendment specifically prohibits the Secretary of the Interior and the Secretary of Commerce from restricting fishing access in any state or territorial marine waters, or the Great Lakes, under the jurisdiction of the National Park Service or the Office of National Marine Sanctuaries unless the restrictions have been developed with and approved by the US Fish and Wildlife Agency of the affected state or territory. Read the rest here 13:25

Texas Rep Sponsors Bill to Stop Foreign and Illegal Fishing in US Waters by Mexican Boats

A critical vote in a House Committee on Thursday unanimously passed H.R. 774, the “Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated Fishing Enforcement Act of 2015.”  Its goal is to stop foreign and illegal fishing in US waters. The bill provides for increased enforcement activity by the Coast Guard, which stops, seizes, arrests and fines Mexican fishermen poaching in Texas and U.S. waters.  Such activity is almost a daily event at Coast Guard bases in South Padre Island, Port Aransas and Port O-Conner. Read the rest here 16:12

Rep. John Fleming: Congress not going to gut red-snapper management for benefit of recreational anglers

Freshman Rep. Garret Graves (R-La.) proposed an amendment in a House Natural Resources Committee meeting last week that would have transferred red-snapper management authority from the federal government to the states. Rep. John Fleming, Louisiana’s only other representative on the committee, abstained from voting on Graves’ amendment, which drew the ire of recreational fishing-industry leaders. In an interview with NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune, he explained his reasons for not voting: Read the rest here 12:12

MSA Reauthorization: Partisan bickering sinking fishing bill

Senate Obama no fishingTo catch a fish or save a fish: That is the question being debated in Washington.(its not that simple) It summarizes a heated argument going on in Congress, mostly pitting Republicans against Democrats, as both sides try to reauthorize the nation’s primary fisheries law.,,The Democrat-controlled Senate is working on a draft bill, but what has been leaked out has been opposed by fishing groups. Read more here 13:50

Committee Approves Strengthening Fishing Communities and Increasing Flexibility in Fisheries Management Act

Today the House Natural Resources Committee approved H.R. 4742, the Strengthening Fishing Communities and Increasing Flexibility in Fisheries Management Act by a bipartisan vote of 24-17. This legislation would renew and amend the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (last reauthorized in 2006 and expired in 2013) to ensure that this  fundamentally sound legislation works in the best interest of both fish and fishermen. Read more here 14:56

Oversight Hearing on: •”ESA Decisions by Closed-Door Settlement: Short-Changing Science, Transparency, Private Property, and State & Local Economies”

Watch the archived video webcast – “Undoubtedly, some believe cramming hundreds of obscure species onto the ESA list under deadlines and blocking off huge swaths of land because of the settlements are ‘successes,’ but many areas of the country tell a different account of how these policies are impacting their communities, their economies, and ultimately, the species,” Doc Hastings [email protected]  09:08

New Report Supports Pallone Position on Flexibility in Fisheries Management

Today’s hearing supported Pallone’s long-time call for revisions to the Magnuson Stevens Act that will take into account more socioeconomic concerns to ensure that the livelihood of fishermen and fishing communities are not unnecessarily hurt because of arbitrary guidelines. [email protected]  09:50

House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Doc Hastings presses Obama administration for ocean plan docs

Chief Surgeon Doc Hastings (R-Wash.)House Natural Resources Committee and his surgical team has ordered a P.E.T. scan of the National Ocean Policy to understand the workings of the inter-agency  National Ocean Council, tasked to implement the Executive Ordered policy. The policy was designed to streamline inter-agency bureaucratic activity related to all thing’s Ocean’s and Great Lakes, including interconnected rivers and tributary’s. In addition to ridicules claim that the Ocean Policy consists of voluntary, non-regulatory guidelines, there is also the issue of not having the foggiest of just how much dough this plan will cost!  Read the article @thehill   Read the letter to Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, Acting Under Secretary, NOAA

Bill could open Bristol Bay along with many other areas in the U.S., to offshore drilling.

A bill making progress through the legislative ladder of the U.S. Congress is garnering some nervous attention in Alaska this month. House Bill 2231 could potentially open up the previously protected waters of Bristol Bay, along with many other areas in the U.S., to offshore drilling. The legislation is called the Offshore Energy and Jobs Act, and was approved by the House Natural Resources Committee earlier this month by a majority vote of 23 to 18. [email protected]

House Natural Resources Committee examines red snapper fishery

WASHINGTON — A House committee on Thursday tackled the difficult challenge of balancing commercial and recreational demands on the Gulf of Mexico red snapper fishery. Republican Rep. Steve Southerland of Florida criticized the way NOAA officials have managed red snapper, especially their proposed Days-at-Sea Program for Charter-for-Hire.Southerland raised a hypothetical scenario in which 20 charter boats are granted permits while 60 are not.  [email protected]