The Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act is a comprehensive law managing America’s marine fisheries. The bill first passed in 1976 and reauthorized twice in 1996 and 2006.
Articles about Magnuson-Stevens Act
Series of recommendations for next Administration and Congress urge improvements to public access that create jobs and enhance conservation
Recreational fishing community still sees the need for legislative action to require allocation reviews
In response to decades of criticism over not examining how the nation’s public marine fisheries resources are divided among fishing stakeholders, NOAA Fisheries released a Fisheries Allocation Review Policy that describes potential criteria for reviewing fisheries allocations. The recreational fishing and boating community expressed appreciation for this long-awaited recognition of the need to have an allocation policy, but also concern about the lack of firm commitments and timelines for initiating allocation reviews.
First, it is important to understand that reauthorizing a large environmental law like the MSA is, simply put, a slog. It is hard work.
As a coalition of organizations representing the nation’s saltwater recreational fishing and boating community, including millions of anglers and thousands of recreational fishing-dependent businesses, we urge you to incorporate the priorities of the recreational fishing community as you contemplate reauthorization of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA), the primary statute governing the nation’s marine fisheries.
Magnuson-Stevens reauthorization contains major provisions benefitting recreational fishing
A coalition of organizations representing the saltwater recreational fishing and boating community congratulated the U.S. House of Representatives on its passage of H.R. 1335, a bill to reauthorize the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, the primary statute governing the nation’s marine fisheries.
During the week of June 1, a bill to reauthorize the nation’s primary marine fisheries law, the Magnuson-Stevens Act, is expected to go to the House floor. This bill, H.R. 1335 by Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska) includes several provisions of high importance to the recreational fishing community and could be further bolstered by the inclusion of three key amendments.
House Committee member helps derail state management amendment
House Natural Resources Committee approves Magnuson-Stevens Act reauthorization bill
Leaders in the recreational fishing and boating community yesterday highlighted the progress in elevating the importance of saltwater recreational fishing in the nation’s primary law governing marine fisheries management. The U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Natural Resources yesterday approved a bill sponsored by Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska), H.R. 1335, to reauthorize the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA), which addresses top priorities of the recreational fishing community.
Sen. Rubio continues efforts to address needs of recreational anglers in federal fisheries law
Recreational Fishing and Boating Community Underwhelmed By House Magnuson-Stevens Act Reauthorization Bill
Leaders map out path for federal marine fisheries conservation
Florida senator says next iteration of law cannot ignore recreational community
Just when you think federal fisheries management can’t get any more confusing, NOAA Fisheries pops out a solution to a problem that is truly baffling, especially when viewed against recent decisions to dramatically limit recreational catch in other regions. Last week, NOAA announced that fishermen will be allowed to catch up to 6,700 metric tons of Gulf of Maine cod in 2012. The statement from NOAA read:
As hard as it might be to believe, management of the Gulf red snapper fishery reached a new level of frustration this week. At its meeting in Mobile, the Gulf Council announced that the overall quota of red snapper harvest will be increased, but the 2012 season will likely be the shortest ever, perhaps no more than 40 days. Why?
The illusion continues for NOAA Fisheries.
It is easy to see why federal fisheries management is in the shape it is in.
Chairman Hastings’ Opening Statement at Full Committee Hearing on Legislation to Amend the Magnuson-Stevens Act
In 2010, U.S. commercial fisherman landed over 8 billion pounds of fish valued at $4.5 billion. In addition, approximately 10 million recreational fisherman made more than 71 million recreational fishing trips. Clearly, the economic activity created by the Nation's fishery resources is significant, especially for coastal communities.
House Committee on Natural Resources holds hearing on eight fisheries bills
Robert G. Hayes, one of the most respected voices on state, federal andinternational fisheries management issues, is among those invited by U.S. Rep. Doc Hastings (R-Wash.), chairman of the House Committee on Natural Resources, to appear before a hearing of his committee on Dec. 1 and offer testimony on a number of bills that stand to impact federal fisheries management.
Nelson/Rubio Bill racing the clock to fix management problems in federal saltwater fisheries
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Nov. 29, 2011– With a December 31 deadline looming, support is surging for legislation to ensure that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Marine Fisheries Service uses sound science to set catch limits for the nation’s fisheries as a Senate version of the Fishery Science Improvement Act was introduced late yesterday by Senators Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) and Marco Rubio (R-Fla.).
Recreational groups hoping Congress can put off deadlines so more data can be gathered
SARASOTA — — The future of recreational saltwater fishing is murky as restrictive federal regulations are poised to possibly close vast stretches of offshore waters.
By now most of us have read stories about groups who believe Armageddon arrives in 2012. And most of us consider most of them to be operating on the fringe of reality. And we say that with all due respect.
In what has become a veritable campaign of misinformation, Pew Environment Group issued yet another statement in support of setting annual catch limits on marine fisheries species without the benefit of science-based assessments.
Influential marine scientist Brian Rothschild has charged NOAA with adopting an "unnecessarily hard-line," wrong, wasteful and job-destroying interpretation of Congress' intent for managing America's fisheries.
It is more of the same from the Pew Environment Group. The message below making the rounds in DC has all the hallmarks of the environmental community’s overall approach to marine resource management.
Local fishing captain David Nelson and Congressman John Mica were among a series of experts who spoke at a congressional subcommittee hearing on fishing this week in Washington, D.C.
Jeff Angers, president of the Center for Coastal Conservation, testified before Congress this week on behalf of the many marine industry groups at a hearing titled, “NOAA’s Fishery Science: Is the Lack of Basic Science Costing Jobs?”
Terrestrial and freshwater wildlife resource management agencies would not think of operating without standardized stock surveys and assessments. Yet, for our marine resources, proponents of the status quo say that “readily available information such as biology” is adequate to replace a standardized, peer-reviewed stock assessment as the foundation of management, even when the decisions based on it will have drastic social and economic consequences.
Opponents of FSIA disapprove of the bill’s requirement that managers have a modern, recent assessment in hand in order to set an annual catch limit (ACL) for a stock of fish. Terrestrial and freshwater wildlife resource management agencies would not think of operating without standardized stock surveys and assessments.
In recent years, someone who fishes offshore for snapper or grouper has had very little to be excited about. In fact, grasping the volume of changes to federal fishing regulations has been no easy task. Accepting and adjusting to those changes has been an even more daunting one.
Ken Perrotte's outdoor column
ABRUPT CLOSURES of popular ocean fisheries in recent years by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Marine Fisheries Service, some based on allegedly sketchy data, raised the ire of many anglers and conservation groups.
In 2006, after years of chronic overfishing (see my recent blog on the history of overfishing in the South Atlantic), Congress amended the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA) to require fishery managers to set science-based annual catch limits by the end of 2011, with accountability measures to ensure fishermen stay within those limits.
A bill introduced in the U.S. House this week seeks to ensure that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Marine Fisheries Service is required to set catch limits based on sound science, the bill's proponents say.
A bill introduced by U.S. Rep. Rob Wittman, R-Va., seeks to ensure that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Marine Fisheries Service is required to set catch limits based on several factors supported by a group of industry associations.
Washington, DC – Congressman Rob Wittman (VA-1), joined by 17 colleagues in the House and the Co-Chairmen of the Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus, today announced the introduction of bipartisan legislation to improve federal management of major saltwater fisheries to ensure a balanced approach in the conservation and management of saltwater fish.
Anglers and industry groups unite to address catch limit problems in federal saltwater fisheries
A bill introduced by Rep. Rob Wittman (R-Va.) seeks to ensure that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Marine Fisheries Service is required to set catch limits based on sound science. The bi-partisan legislation, known as the Fishery Science Improvement Act (FSIA), is endorsed by the Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus as well as a broad coalition of conservation, sportfishing and marine industry groups.
We've covered fish closures a lot here on GoFISHn. And, unfortunately, most of those fish closures have caused a lot of debate because of the lack of information that has lead to shutting down these fishing seasons.
The Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation (CSF), along with Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus (CSC) Co-Chair Rep. Jeff Miller and CSC Member Rep. Rob Wittman, briefed members of Congress this morning on legislation that will be introduced to maintain conservation standards set forth in the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act.
NEW BEDFORD — President Barack Obama’s nominee to be the next secretary of commerce raised concerns among fishing interests today.
Local and state lawmakers are trying to spur their federal counterparts to action on fishing regulation changes.
SEABROOK — The federal government's new "catch share" system has been literally killing off the state's 400-year-old commercial fishing industry, fishermen and state experts told a panel of federal officials yesterday.
Forged in independence, laid low by regulatory constraints, America's original fishing port told its story in many voices from many perspectives Tuesday, appealing to one arm of the U.S. Commerce Department for relief to help survive the harm done by another.
To the Editor:
BARNEGAT LIGHT - U.S. Rep. Jon Runyan wants commercial and recreational fishermen to be able to catch more fish, and in the process create more jobs.
After years of overfishing, many fish populations have begun to recover. On Monday, Commerce Secretary Gary Locke announced that New England’s fishermen will be allowed to increase their catch of 11 commercially important fish stocks in Atlantic waters this summer.
In “Let Us Eat Fish” (Op-Ed, April 15), Ray Hilborn writes that studies showing a worldwide decline in fish stocks are exaggerated and that most fish stocks are stable.
THIS Lent, many ecologically conscious Americans might feel a twinge of guilt as they dig into the fish on their Friday dinner plates. They shouldn’t.
The administrator of federal fisheries has reportedly declared restoration efforts of overfished stocks — now in their fourth decade under Magnuson-Stevens Act mandates — have succeeded in making sustainable the nation's last great wild food resource.
Alexandria, VA – March 8, 2010 – A dearth of marine fisheries data is on a collision course with the primary federal law that oversees federal marine fisheries management. To address this impending train wreck, today the U.S. Senate’s Commerce Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries and Coast Guard held an oversight hearing regarding the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Marine Fisheries Service’s (NOAA Fisheries) management of the nation’s federal marine fisheries.
CCA comments to Senate focus on negative impacts to recreational fisheries
WASHINGTON, DC - In response to a growing chorus of frustration, the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation held a hearing today before the Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, and Coast Guard Subcommittee on implementation of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. Bill Bird, a long-time volunteer leader in the Coastal Conservation Association (CCA), was invited to testify on how MSA implementation is impacting recreational fisheries.
ST. PETERSBURG – Fishermen/fisherwomen came from all over the eastern U.S. to protest the National Marine Fisheries Service about current fishing regulations they deem as over-regulations.
MIAMI BEACH — The recreational fishing community along the nation's coastline is alarmed.
Anglers frustrated with unrealistic implementation of Magnuson-Stevens Act
SILVER SPRINGS, MD – A three-day workshop on annual catch limits (ACLs) sponsored by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) that concludes this week leaves very little hope that the recreational sector will find a way to mitigate the negative impacts of ACLs without a legislative fix to the Magnuson-Stevens Act, the overarching federal law governing the nation’s fisheries.
CCA comments on problematic Annual Catch Limit regulations at NOAA workshop
SILVER SPRING, MD – A workshop hosted jointly by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the regional Fishery Management Councils and nationally recognized experts this week will give the first opportunity to convey to federal managers the need to mitigate the severe negative impacts of the current annual catch limit (ACL) requirements on the recreational sector.
They say that fishing is the world’s second oldest occupation, so it is likely there have been more ironic events in its long, storied history, but the recent letter from Massachusetts’s Governor Deval Patrick to President Obama must rank near the top of the list.
Columbia, SC - The Center for Coastal Conservation has elected Jim Martin, Director of the Berkley Conservation Institute, to its board of directors.
New science removes threat of massive bottom closures in response to red snapper mess...for now
The rollercoaster of red snapper management in the South Atlantic took yet another turn this week when the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced a six-month delay in implementing large-scale closures to all bottom fishing as a management measure to recover red snapper stocks.
Congressional Sportsmen’s Caucus weighs in for a federal fisheries fix
(Oct. 01, 2010 - Washington, DC)... Support is growing for legislation to address the crisis in federal marine fisheries management as a House version of the Fishery Conservation Transition Act was introduced...
Nowhere is it more apparent that NOAA Fisheries (Formerly the National Marine Fisheries Service) will be unable to meet the requirements of the 2006 MSA reauthorization than in the table below.
With Florida fishermen facing painful restrictions on where and how to fish, new legislation by U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson could be one of their last chances for a reprieve.
The Fishery Conservation Transition Act has been designed to preserve the crucial conservation standards...
The Fishery Conservation Transition Act, introduced July 15 by Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) as S.3594, has been designed to preserve the crucial conservation standards of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA) while providing federal fisheries managers some much-needed tools to address critical fisheries issues.
New legislation was introduced Thursday that is intended to affect the outcome of a two-year debate between fishermen and government fishery managers over the health of red snapper populations in the South Atlantic.
The following is Senator Bill Nelson's floor statement on the Fishery Conservation Transition Act, filed on July 15, 2010
S. 3594. A bill to amend the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act to mitigate the economic impact of the transition to sustainable fisheries on fishing communities, and for other purposes; to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation.
An environmental group Thursday sharply criticized legislation by Sen. Bill Nelson that would delay plans to scale back South Atlantic red snapper fishing.
Legislation introduces measures to address management deficiencies and prevent precipitous, massive fisheries closures
Today, Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) introduced legislation designed to safeguard the strong conservation standards of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA) while addressing a growing crisis within the federal marine fisheries management system.
CCA participants hope to see results after meeting with NOAA Fisheries
Outdoorsmen were out in force at the nation’s capital last week as two events in Washington DC were dedicated to how this country manages its wild and natural resources.
Read full letter here.
Charter boat captain Sam Maisano remembers the good old days when February was the time to head offshore and catch grouper. "We have never had any problem catching big fish," said Maisano, who keeps his 32-foot, twin-engine Donzi docked behind Gators Cafe and Saloon on John's Pass. "There are grouper out there, but most folks don't want to book a trip unless they can keep something to eat."
The rally on the steps of the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday brought together commercial and recreational fishermen and elected officials from both sides of the aisle.
Say catch rules kill jobs, hurt communities
WASHINGTON - Fishermen and charter boat captains from Massachusetts to Florida rallied outside the Capitol yesterday to demand changes to a federal fisheries law they say is killing jobs and eroding fishing communities.
TBF joins Sportfishing Industry and Partners Calling on Administration to Make Major Marine Fisheries Management Change
Immediate administrative action needed to avoid significant problems with fisheries management
The Billfish Foundation today joined a coalition of marine recreational fishing, boating, and conservation organizations and businesses to call on the Obama administration to take immediate action to deal with a crisis in federal fisheries management that has been growing for two decades because federal regulators failed to collect accurate and timely fisheries data or conduct sufficient and frequent stock assessments.
Recreational and commercial fishermen from the Florida Keys to Alaska marched on the Capitol in Washington, D.C., Wednesday to demand changes to federal fishery laws.
Statement by Eric Schwaab, NOAA Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, on Today’s “United We Fish” Rally at Capitol Hill
I am here today to listen to those who have come to rally Congress. I know the key to any successful fishery management program is active involvement by commercial and recreational fishermen as well as other interested stakeholders.
Overwhelmed agency incapable of properly implementing law
Passage of the 2006 Magnuson-Stevens Act, the overarching law that manages America’s marine fisheries, revealed crippling deficiencies within the agency charged with implementing the law. Recently, a coalition of marine angling and industry groups launched an effort to improve the National Marine Fisheries Service’s efforts to manage the nation’s marine resources and the 13 million saltwater anglers who depend on healthy fisheries.
From the chairman of a federal fisheries panel to a Florida senator and fishermen massed for protests in Washington, there were calls Wednesday to rethink a law driving new red snapper regulations expected to hammer Northeast Florida fishermen.
CCA is opposed to current legislation sponsored by Rep. Frank Pallone and Sen. Charles Schumer, also known as the Flexibility Act, which would weaken the conservation provisions of the Magnuson Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. CCA does not believe that H.R.1584 and S.1255 would benefit anglers, as it does not address many of the core problems plaguing recreational fisheries.
Sportfishing Industry and Partners Call on Administration to Make Major Marine Fisheries Management Changes
Immediate administrative action needed to avoid significant problems with fisheries management
Today, a coalition of marine recreational fishing, boating, and conservation organizations and businesses called on the Obama administration to take immediate action to address a crisis within the federal fisheries management system.
The Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act is the overarching law that manages America’s marine fisheries. It was first passed in 1976 and was reauthorized in 1996 and again in 2006.
An impressive array of the major marine industry, recreational angling and environmental groups co-signed an October 22 letter to Dr. Jane Lubchenco, administrator of the National Atmospheric and Ocean Administration (NOAA), calling for reform of recreational angling data collection by the federal government.
HOUSTON, TX – In a stunning repudiation of the National Marine Fisheries Service’s rebuilding plan for red snapper, a federal judge ruled yesterday that NMFS violated the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act by its continuing failure to take timely and appropriate steps to rebuild red snapper stocks in the Gulf of Mexico or to regulate the harm to red snapper caused by shrimp fishing.
Good Afternoon, my name is Bob Hayes and I am the General Counsel for the Coastal Conservation Association (CCA). I would like to thank the Chairman for this opportunity to address the Committee on the reauthorization of the Magnuson-Stevens Act.