A representative from Louisiana introduced legislation on April 6 aiming to modernized the nation’s recreational fisheries management infrastructure and increase access to waters for recreational boaters and fishers.
Rep. Garrett Graves, R-Louisiana, brought the Modern Fish Act (Modernizing Recreational Fisheries Management Act of 2017, or H.R. 2023) to the House floor in early April with three co-sponsors.
A statement issued by the American Sportfishing Association (ASA) stated the bill would focus on alternative management of recreational fishing, rebuild fishery stocks more efficiently, reexamine allocations and create certain exemptions for annual catch limits.
ASA President Mike Nussman reportedly stated the Modern Fish Act would get more anglers out onto the water while also modernizing management practices.
Opponents of the bill allege the proposed policy would restrict fishery management and limit the government’s ability to find innovative solutions to overfishing, according to news reports.
The House Natural Resources Committee is, as of press time, considering H.R. 2023. Committee members will decide whether the Modern Fish Act will move forward.