Text: S.906 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)All Information (Except Text)

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Reported to Senate (12/05/2019)

Calendar No. 316

116th CONGRESS
1st Session
S. 906

[Report No. 116–166]


To improve the management of driftnet fishing.


IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

March 27, 2019

Mrs. Feinstein (for herself, Mrs. Capito, Mr. Coons, Mr. Blumenthal, and Ms. Harris) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation

December 5, 2019

Reported by Mr. Wicker, with an amendment

[Insert the part printed in italic]


A BILL

To improve the management of driftnet fishing.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. Short title.

This Act may be cited as the “Driftnet Modernization and Bycatch Reduction Act”.

SEC. 2. Definition.

Section 3(25) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1802(25)) is amended by inserting “, or with a mesh size of 14 inches or greater,” after “more”.

SEC. 3. Findings and policy.

(a) Findings.—Section 206(b) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1826(b)) is amended—

(1) in paragraph (6), by striking “and” at the end;

(2) in paragraph (7), by striking the period and inserting “; and”; and

(3) by adding at the end the following:

“(8) within the exclusive economic zone, large-scale driftnet fishing that deploys nets with large mesh sizes causes significant entanglement and mortality of living marine resources, including myriad protected species, despite limitations on the lengths of such nets.”.

(b) Policy.—Section 206(c) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1826(c)) is amended—

(1) in paragraph (2), by striking “and” at the end;

(2) in paragraph (3), by striking the period and inserting “; and”; and

(3) by adding at the end the following—

“(4) prioritize the phase out of large-scale driftnet fishing in the exclusive economic zone and promote the development and adoption of alternative fishing methods and gear types that minimize the incidental catch of living marine resources.”.

SEC. 4. Transition program.

Section 206 of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1826) is amended by adding at the end the following—

“(i) Fishing gear transition program.—

“(1) IN GENERAL.—During the 5-year period beginning on the date of enactment of the Driftnet Modernization and Bycatch Reduction Act, the Secretary shall conduct a transition program to facilitate the phase-out of large-scale driftnet fishing and adoption of alternative fishing practices that minimize the incidental catch of living marine resources, and shall award grants to eligible permit holders who participate in the program.

“(2) PERMISSIBLE USES.—Any permit holder receiving a grant under paragraph (1) may use such funds only for the purpose of covering—

“(A) any fee originally associated with a permit authorizing participation in a large-scale driftnet fishery, if such permit is surrendered for permanent revocation, and such permit holder relinquishes any claim associated with the permit;

“(B) a forfeiture of fishing gear associated with a permit described in subparagraph (A); or

“(C) the purchase of alternative gear with minimal incidental catch of living marine resources, if the fishery participant is authorized to continue fishing using such alternative gears.

“(3) CERTIFICATION.—The Secretary shall certify that, with respect to each participant in the program under this subsection, any permit authorizing participation in a large-scale driftnet fishery has been permanently revoked and that no new permits will be issued to authorize such fishing.”.

SEC. 5. Exception.

Section 307(1)(M) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1857(1)(M)) is amended by inserting before the semicolon the following: “, unless such large-scale driftnet fishing—

“(i) deploys, within the exclusive economic zone, a net with a total length of less than two and one-half kilometers and a mesh size of 14 inches or greater; and

“(ii) is conducted within 5 years of the date of enactment of the Driftnet Modernization and Bycatch Reduction Act”.

SEC. 6. Fees.

(a) In general.—The North Pacific Fishery Management Council may recommend, and the Secretary of Commerce may approve, regulations necessary for the collection of fees from charter vessel operators who guide recreational anglers who harvest Pacific halibut in International Pacific Halibut Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A as those terms are defined in part 300 of title 50, Code of Federal Regulations (or any successor regulations).

(b) Use of fees.—Any fees collected under this section shall be available, without appropriation or fiscal year limitation, for the purposes of—

(1) financing administrative costs of the Recreational Quota Entity program;

(2) the purchase of halibut quota shares in International Pacific Halibut Commission regulatory areas 2C and 3A by the recreational quota entity authorized in part 679 of title 50, Code of Federal Regulations (or any successor regulations);

(3) halibut conservation and research; and

(4) promotion of the halibut resource by the recreational quota entity authorized in part 679 of title 50, Code of Federal Regulations (or any successor regulations).


Calendar No. 316

116th CONGRESS
     1st Session
S. 906
[Report No. 116–166]

A BILL
To improve the management of driftnet fishing.

December 5, 2019
Reported with an amendment