December 4, 2014

Measures Clear Small Fishing Boats from Burdensome Regulations

On November 20, legislation (S. 2963) was introduced in the Senate which would ensure that fishermen with small boats (shorter than 79 feet in length), would not be required to get a permit each time they clean their boat or dispose of bait.

On December 2, S. 2963 was advanced through the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, moving one step closer to clearing small fishing boats from burdensome regulations intended for larger commercial fishing vessels.

Prior to movement through the Senate Committee, 11 organizations from the recreational angling community, including the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation, sent a letter to bill sponsor Chairwoman Senator Boxer and Ranking Member Senator Vitter, along with other Committee Members, expressing support for the legislation on behalf of America’s anglers. The letter notes that under the Clean Boating Act, passed in 2008, no small recreational or commercial fishing vessel is required to obtain a permit for any discharge incidental to its normal operation. This legislation would simply continue this allowance, which is set to expire in December 2014.

Studies conducted at both the state and federal level have found that the number of hunters and trappers have been on a generally declining trend over the past several decades. To increase recruitment, retention, and reactivation (R3) of hunters and trappers, which initiative do you think would have the greatest impact?

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