Note: I should have pointed out that the NY RFHFA was mentioned on the floor of Congress yesterday. Thank you Congressman Zeldin....
The headline from SAVING SEAFOOD:
So what does it mean by the passage of the HOUSE bill...
Specifically, H.R. 200:
• Eliminates unscientific time frames to rebuild fish stocks that unnecessarily restrict access to fisheries.
• Provides flexibility for fishery managers to apply alternative management strategies better suited to regional needs and specific fish stocks.
• Includes critical reforms advocated by the sportsman community to allow for proper management of recreational fisheries.
• Provides necessary support for stock assessments, cooperative research and fisheries science to empower NOAA to prioritize its core mission of health fisheries management and achieving maximum sustainable yield.
• Authorizes no new federal spending and an estimated $100 million in savings over a similar bill, H.R. 1335, that passed the House with bipartisan support in the 114th Congress.
Essentially it provides those regulating within the science and regulating side of the table increased flexibility in designing fishery management plans while managing stocks sustainably in achieving Msy (Maximum Sustainable Yield).
Many congressional supporters helped to pull this bill through, with 15 R's and 9 D's crossing over party lines.
New York State Congressman Lee Zeldin helped to get this bill passed with a number of impassioned and thoughtful pleas to those in congress. His press release can be read >> HERE <<.
Just keep in mind, this is the first major hurdle in getting the bill to the presidents desk. Hopefully we will have a senate version of the re-authorization bill with the elements (amendments) that are within H.R.200. Flexibility in federal fishery management has been an ongoing and dragged out process for the past nine years, with noted failures with the previous congress until this very time.
No one is looking to rollback all the conservation measures that all fishermen have sacrificed since the MSA II law in 2006. Rebuilding depleted fish stocks, managing for access to these rebuilt species and most of all, sustainable fishery practices, not only remain within this legislation but are ensured to continue in the years to come.