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Calendar No. 569
106th Congress Report
2d Session 106-302
FISHERMEN'S PROTECTIVE ACT AMENDMENTS
R E P O R T
COMMITTEE ON COMMERCE, SCIENCE, AND TRANSPORTATION
May 23, 2000.--Ordered to be printed
U.S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE
79-010 WASHINGTON : 2000
SENATE COMMITTEE ON COMMERCE, SCIENCE, AND TRANSPORTATION
one hundred sixth congress
JOHN McCAIN, Arizona, Chairman
TED STEVENS, Alaska ERNEST F. HOLLINGS, South Carolina
CONRAD BURNS, Montana DANIEL K. INOUYE, Hawaii
SLADE GORTON, Washington JOHN D. ROCKEFELLER IV, West
TRENT LOTT, Mississippi Virginia
KAY BAILEY HUTCHISON, Texas JOHN F. KERRY, Massachusetts
OLYMPIA SNOWE, Maine JOHN B. BREAUX, Louisiana
JOHN ASHCROFT, Missouri RICHARD H. BRYAN, Nevada
BILL FRIST, Tennessee BYRON L. DORGAN, North Dakota
SPENCER ABRAHAM, Michigan RON WYDEN, Oregon
SAM BROWNBACK, Kansas MAX CLELAND, Georgia
Mark Buse, Staff Director
Martha P. Allbright, General Counsel
Kevin D. Kayes, Democratic Staff Director
Moses Boyd, Democratic Chief Counsel
Gregg Elias, Democratic General Counsel
Calendar No. 569
106th Congress Report
2d Session 106-302
FISHERMEN'S PROTECTIVE ACT AMENDMENTS
May 23, 2000.--Ordered to be printed
Mr. McCain, from the Committee on Commerce, Science, and
Transportation, submitted the following
R E P O R T
[To accompany H.R. 1651]
The Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, to
which was referred the act (H.R. 1651), ``An act to amend the
Fishermen's Protective Act of 1967 to extend the period during
which reimbursement may be provided to owners of United States
fishing vessels for costs incurred when such a vessel is seized
and detained by a foreign country, and for other purposes,''
having considered the same, reports favorably thereon with
amendment and recommends that the act as amended do pass.
Purpose of the Act
H.R. 1651, as amended, the Fishermen's Protective Act
Amendments of 1999 has three titles. Title I provides an
extension of current law from fiscal year 2000 to fiscal year
2003 so that reimbursement may be provided to owners of U.S.
fishing vessels illegally detained or seized by foreign
countries. Title II establishes a panel to advise the
Secretaries of State and Interior on Yukon River Salmon
management issues in Alaska and authorizes $3 million for fish
stock restoration. Title III authorizes the Secretary of
Commerce to acquire up to six new fishery research vessels and
authorizes appropriations of $60 million in each of fiscal
years 2002 and 2003 for the acquisition of the first two
fishery research vessels.
Background and Needs
TITLE I--THE FISHERMEN'S PROTECTIVE ACT
The Fishermen's Protective Act of 1967 (FPA) was originally
enacted in response to illegal seizures and detainments of U.S.
fishing vessels by the governments of a number of South
American countries. At the time, the United States claimed only
a 12-mile jurisdictional limit over fisheries resources, while
seven South American countries claimed a 200-mile national
jurisdiction. Since the United States did not recognize the
jurisdiction of other countries beyond 12 miles, some U.S.
vessels fished in areas of the Pacific Ocean they considered to
be high seas. However, certain South American countries
believed the U.S. vessels were encroaching upon sovereign
waters. In 1967, Ecuador seized nine U.S. tuna vessels and Peru
seized two U.S. vessels.
The FPA established a program under which the Secretary of
State may reimburse fishermen for the fines and direct costs
incurred from the illegal seizure and detention of a vessel by
a foreign government. These payments are made out of the
Fishermen's Protective Fund (Protective Fund), established
under section 9 of the FPA. In addition, section 7 established
the Fishermen's Guaranty Fund (Guaranty Fund). Vessel owners,
through fee agreements with the federal government, pay fees
into the Guaranty Fund, which serves as a type of insurance to
recover the indirect costs resulting from illegal seizure and
detention of commercial fishing vessels. This program was
designed to cover lost income and the value of the fish caught
and seized. The fees charged to fishing vessel owners under the
Guaranty Fund more than doubled in 1985, when the Solomon
Islands seized a tuna fishing vessel, the Jeanette Diane, and
Brazil seized and detained a number of U.S. shrimp vessels,
resulting in multimillion dollar payments from the Fund.
The Fisheries Act of 1995 (P.L. 104-43) amended the FPA to
authorize the Secretary of State to make reimbursements from
the Protective Fund to U.S. commercial fishing vessels that
were charged by the Canadian government for use of the Inside
Passage. The Inside Passage is a waterway located between
Vancouver Island and mainland British Columbia. It is the
traditional route U.S. fishermen travel between the contiguous
United States and the Alaskan salmon fishing grounds to avoid
dangerous conditions in the open ocean outside of the Passage.
In June 1994 after negotiations failed between the United
States and Canada on the Pacific Salmon Treaty, Canada began to
impose a $1,100 transit fee on U.S. vessels using the Inside
Passage. Canadian officials hoped the fee would induce the
United States to return to the negotiations. The U.S.
Administration regards collection of this fee as a violation of
international law. Nevertheless, Canada has refused to
reimburse the U.S. government for fees Canada has collected
from U.S. vessels for Inside Passage transit.
The Protective Fund has an authorized appropriation of $3
million. In 1996 and 1997, 261 claims were filed against the
Protective Fund and payments totaled approximately $290,000.
Between 1989 and 1996, three reimbursements were made from the
Protective Fund out of seven claims and no claims were made in
1998. Only one reimbursement from the Guaranty Fund has been
made since 1987, totaling $186,000 for indirect costs resulting
from the seizure of four vessels by the Costa Rican government.
H.R. 1651, as amended, extends the current authorization in
fiscal year 2000 to fiscal year 2003.
TITLE II--YUKON RIVER SALMON
The Yukon River is a major North American river, draining an
area of approximately 328,000 square miles over its 1,980 mile
length. Its headwaters are in British Columbia and the Yukon
Territory, Canada. The river travels about 700 miles through
Canada before it crosses the Alaskan border. In Alaska, it
moves in a general westward direction for over 1,200 miles
across the state to empty into Norton Sound in the Bering Sea.
The river basin is not heavily populated or developed.
The Yukon River is an important habitat for Pacific salmon,
an anadromous fish species that alternates its life cycles
between fresh and salt water. Pacific salmon hatch and spend
their early lives in freshwater streams, after one to three
years migrate to the open ocean to mature, and then return back
to the freshwater stream where they were originally hatched in
order to spawn. Many of the Yukon River salmon travel the
almost 2,000 mile length of the river to spawn in Canadian
waters. The general lack of manmade barriers along the Yukon
River, as compared to other more heavily engineered rivers,
aids in the completion of their journey.
Salmon have historically played an important role, both
culturally and economically, in Alaska. The Alaskan salmon
fishery is a mixture of commercial, recreational, and
subsistence fishing. Both state and Federal agencies have
control over management of more than 25 different commercial
salmon fisheries. However, because of the transboundary nature
of the salmon resource, management is also negotiated with
U.S.-Canadian disputes over management and conservation of
salmon stocks have occurred since the early 19th century.
International agreements on salmon management were ratified in
1929 and 1957, but both countries had a number of concerns that
were not resolved by the pacts. In 1971, the countries began to
negotiate a new agreement, ultimately resulting in the signing
of the Pacific Salmon Treaty in 1985.
The Pacific Salmon Treaty attempted to establish a framework
under which the United States and Canada could bilaterally
manage their shared salmon stock. After ten years of
negotiations over the catch and long-term conservation of Yukon
River salmon, the two countries reached an interim agreement in
1995. The United States implemented this agreement through the
Fisheries Act of 1995. Title VII of that law created the United
States section of the Yukon River Salmon Panel and a U.S.
The United States and Canada were each allotted six
appointees to the panel. U.S. membership includes one person
appointed by the Secretary of State, one appointed by the
Governor of Alaska, and four other members that are nominated
by the Governor of Alaska and selected by the Secretary of
State. Additionally, the law allowed for the creation of an
eight to twelve member Yukon RiverAdvisory Committee to provide
information and recommendations to the Panel. The Fisheries Act of 1995
also authorized $4 million a year, including up to $3 million a year
for the Department of Commerce and Interior for survey, restoration,
and enhancement activities that relate to Yukon River salmon.
Negotiations continued with the 1995 interim agreement in
place, during which the countries attempted to reach a
permanent or long-term agreement. However, the interim
agreement expired in March 1998 without another such agreement.
H.R. 1651, as amended, codifies the Yukon River Salmon Panel,
established under the 1995 interim agreement, to advise the
Secretary of State on Yukon River Salmon management, advise the
Secretary of Interior on enhancement and restoration of the
salmon stocks, and perform other activities that relate to the
conservation and management of Yukon River salmon stocks. The
reported bill also maintains the Yukon River Advisory
Committee. If a permanent or long-term agreement is reached,
H.R. 1651, as amended, allows for the continuation of the Panel
and Advisory Committee under the terms of the new agreement.
H.R. 1651, as amended, authorizes $4 million a year for each
of fiscal years 2000 through 2003. Up to $3 million of these
funds can be used by the Departments of Commerce and Interior
for survey, restoration, and enhancement projects related to
Yukon River salmon. In addition, the reported act authorizes
$600,000 for cooperative salmon research and management
projects in the United States portion of the Yukon River
drainage area that have been recommended by the Panel.
TITLE III--FISHERY INFORMATION ACQUISITION
Dependable research platforms are essential for conducting
the fisheries stock assessment surveys necessary to monitor
species abundance, recruitment, age composition, and their
response to ecological change and fisheries pressure.
Collection of such information is critical to the development
of the regulatory regime governing commercial and recreational
fishing. Without reliable information, the regulatory framework
often lacks credibility.
In 1996, Congress passed the Sustainable Fisheries Act (SFA),
the most substantial and comprehensive revision of the
Magnuson-Stevens Fisheries Conservation and Management Act, the
primary Federal law governing marine fisheries. To date, the
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the
federal fishery management councils are still attempting to
implement the new requirements established by the SFA. Many of
these new responsibilities and the resulting fishery management
decisions depend on the survey data and other stock assessment
information collected by NOAA's existing fishery research
vessels (FRVs), some of which are nearing the end of their
In FY 2000, the Administration requested $51.6 million to
acquire the first of four new fisheries research vessels. The
new FRVs will be designed to collect survey and stock
assessment information in an efficient and effective manner. In
addition, these vessels will be used to meet continuing
obligations under the Marine Mammal Protection Act and the
Endangered Species Act. The first new FRV was substantially
funded in FY 2000. However, in FY 2001, the Administration only
requested $8.3 million to continue the construction of the
first new FRV. The Committee was disappointed that funding for
the construction of the second new FRV was not included in the
FY 2001 request. The Committee notes, however, that the FY 2001
request does propose funding for replacement of existing
obsolete and deteriorating research vessels in the out years.
One new FRV has been proposed in each of FY 2002, FY 2003, and
The President's FY 2001 request also included $8 million to
reactivate, convert, and upgrade the NOAA vessel Adventurous to
support fisheries research activities. The Adventurous is a
modern T-AGOS class vessel acquired from the Navy to be
converted to meet marine mammal survey and high priority
fisheries data collection requirements. NOAA plans to replace
the Townsend Cromwell with the Adventurous. According to NOAA,
the Townsend Cromwell is 35 years old and beyond its service
The Committee is hopeful that in FY 2002 the Administration
will resume its commitment to meeting the nation's urgent
fisheries data and information collection needs by fully
funding the second new FRV. Further delays in this acquisition
project will only exacerbate management problems associated
with the substantial data and information shortfall the
Committee has identified in its regional hearings on the
reauthorization of the Magnuson-Stevens Act.
Perhaps the most compelling argument for vessel replacement
needs is found in New England, which has experienced a crisis
in the management of valuable cod and other groundfish stocks.
As a result, the New England Fishery Management Council
(Council) expends a considerable amount of time and energy on
groundfish management, including consideration of stock biology
as well as the ocean conditions that can influence differing
rates of stock recovery. In fact, during the 1999 fishing
season, the Council changed the fishing regulations five times
in an attempt to appropriately manage and conserve the
groundfish stocks. In the Council's view, these changes were
necessary to meet SFA mandates. The Committee notes that this
constantly changing regulatory climate is unfair to the small,
family run businesses that support the affected fishing
To make matters more difficult, the Albatross IV, a 38-year
old fishery research vessel, is the Northeast region's primary
tool for conducting surveys of the fishery resources upon which
these fishing communities depend. While the Albatross IV
continues to collect the survey data necessary for management
decisions for all Northeast fisheries stocks, its operations
are increasingly less reliable. According to the Commerce
Department, the deterioration of the Albatross IV has created
an urgent need for a replacement vessel in the Northeast. The
Committee agrees and further notes that this vessel's
effectiveness in continuing its critical data collection
functions cannot be guaranteed without prohibitively expensive
and major repairs. One of the principal requirements of a
standardized survey is minimizing the variables associated with
collection of data. For that reason, the Northeast bottom trawl
survey program has been conducted for close to 40 years using
the Albatross IV almost exclusively, which has minimized the
introduction of vessel-based variability in the survey data. In
order to maintain continuity of the Northeast surveys, a
replacement vessel is needed so that the required calibration
with the Albatross IV can be performed before it is retired.
The Committee notes that maintaining the existing capability
to collect this long time series of data and information on
Northeast fish stocks is critical to rebuild and manage the
Northeast groundfish stocks, as well as other important fish
stocks in the North- and Mid-Atlantic. Furthermore, the new
acoustically quiet vessel proposed by the Administration would
be able to collect oceanographic and biological data necessary
to support the growing need for multispecies management
measures in New England. The vessel would also make available
an expanded survey area, which could fill recently identified
information gaps for species with ranges that go beyond the
current survey scope.
H.R. 1651, as amended, authorizes acquisition of up to six
new FRVs and authorizes appropriations of $60 million in each
of FYs 2002 and 2003 for the acquisition of the second and
third new FRVs. The Committee notes that several of NOAA's nine
existing fisheries research vessels are becoming
technologically obsolete and reaching the end of their useful
lives. Consequently, NOAA's vessel replacement strategy should
be implemented in an urgent needs- based manner.
During the Committee's Executive Session, two amendments were
adopted, relating to the new FRV's. First, Senator Snowe and
Senator Kerry offered an amendment which clarifies that $60
million would be authorized in each of FYs 2002 and 2003 for
the acquisition of the second and third new FRVs. The House
passed version authorized $60 million without designating the
applicable fiscal year.
Second, Senator Lott offered an amendment which requires the
Commerce Department to procure the new FRVs through full and
open competition from U.S. shipbuilding companies. NOAA should
utilize a best-value method for source selection to ensure that
the contract award is made to that offer which is overall the
most advantageous to the Government, considering all evaluation
factors in the solicitation. The Committee reminds the
Secretary of Commerce that the procurement must be conducted
consistent with the authorization levels contained in the
Atlantic Bluefin Tuna--Use of Spotter Aircraft
The Snowe-Kerry amendment referred to above also contained a
provision relating to the use of spotter aircraft in the
Atlantic bluefin tuna (ABT) fishery. H.R. 1651 was amended to
include a new section which would prohibit the use of aircraft
in the General and Harpoon categories of the ABT fishery.
Due to the wide ranging nature of bluefin tuna and other
highly migratory species, management and conservation authority
rests with the Secretary of Commerce, rather than the regional
fishery management councils. The Magnuson-Stevens Fishery
Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-Stevens Act)
established advisory panels to assist, advise and make
recommendations to the Secretary during the development of
management plans and plan amendments for highly migratory
In August 1998, the highly migratory species advisory panel
(HMS AP) unanimously requested and advised (apart from three
abstentions) that the Secretary, through the National Marine
Fisheries Service (NMFS), prohibit the use of spotter aircraft
in the General and Harpoon categories of the ABT fishery.
However, in October 1998, when NMFS published the draft HMS
fishery management plan (FMP), it did not propose to change the
regulations relating to the use of spotter aircraft.
Nonetheless, the agency indicated that it would address the
issue in a separate rulemaking prior to the start of the June
1, 1999 ABT season. On May 28, 1999, NMFS published a proposed
rule to prohibit the use of spotter planes in the General and
Harpoon categories. For reasons still unclear to the Committee,
the Secretary never finalized this rule. Consequently, it is
the Committee's view that the Secretary did not adequately
address this issue prior to the start of the 1999 ABT season
nor did the Secretary do so in a timely or meaningful manner at
any time thereafter.
H.R. 1651, as amended, adopts the HMS AP recommendation and
prohibits the use of spotter aircraft in the General and
Harpoon categories. According to NMFS, such action is necessary
in order to meet the goals and objectives of the HMS FMP. In
fact, after a review of extensive public comment and guidance
from the HMS AP, NMFS concluded that the status quo is
unacceptable and that prohibiting the use of spotter aircraft
would best address management concerns and ensure that the
objectives of the FMP are met, consistent with the Magnuson-
Stevens Act. The use of spotter aircraft to locate ABT can
accelerate the catch rates and closures in the General and
Harpoon categories. An accelerated catch rate in either
category would have an adverse impact on the scientific
objectives of the FMP and traditional fishing communities. For
instance, it would undermine NMFS regulations designed to
control effort in the General category. Moreover, the use of
such aircraft is inconsistent with the reasoning behind the
initial establishment of the Harpoon category, which is a
weather-dependent, multiple catch fishery.
Upon enactment of this provision, the Committee directs NMFS
to provide Atlantic tuna permit holders an appropriate period
of time to change permit categories for calendar year 2000, if
such permit holders so choose.
Representative Young (R-AK) introduced H.R. 1651 on April 29,
1999, and it was referred to the House Committee on Resources.
Reps. Faleomavaega (D-AS) and Saxton (R-NJ) were co-sponsors of
the act. H.R. 1651 passed the House of Representatives on
September 13, 1999 by voice vote.
On September 14, 1999, the act was received in the Senate and
referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and
Transportation. On April 13, 2000, H.R. 1651 was considered by
the Committee in an open executive session. The Committee
ordered the act to be reported with amendments favorably.
Summary of Major Provisions
Title I provides an extension of current law from fiscal year
2000 to fiscal year 2003 so that reimbursement may be provided
to owners of U.S. fishing vessels illegally detained or seized
by foreign countries.
Title II establishes a panel to advise the Secretaries of
State and Interior on Yukon River Salmon management issues in
Alaska and authorizes $3 million for restoration of Pacific
Title III authorizes the Secretary of Commerce to acquire up
to six new fishery research vessels and authorizes
appropriations of $60 million in each of fiscal year 2002 and
fiscal year 2003 for the acquisition of the first two fishery
H.R. 1651, as amended, also prohibits the use of aircraft in
the General and Harpoon categories of the Atlantic bluefin tuna
In accordance with paragraph 11(a) of rule XXVI of the
Standing Rules of the Senate and section 403 of the
Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the Committee provides the
following cost estimate, prepared by the Congressional Budget
Congressional Budget Office,
Washington, DC, May 5, 2000.
Hon. John McCain,
Chairman, Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, U.S.
Senate, Washington, DC.
Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 1651, an act to
amend the Fishermen's Protective Act of 1967 to extend the
period during which reimbursement may be provided to owners of
United States fishing vessels for costs incurred when such a
vessel is seized and detained by a foreign country, and for
If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contacts are Mark Hadley
and Deborah Reis (for federal costs), and Jean Wooster (for the
Barry B. Anderson
(For Dan L. Crippen, Director).
H.R. 1651--An act to amend the Fishermen's Protective Act of 1967 to
extend the period during which reimbursement may be provided to
owners of United States fishing vessels for costs incurred when
such a vessel is seized and detained by a foreign country, and
for other purposes
Summary: Assuming appropriation of the authorized amounts,
CBO estimates that implementing H.R. 1651 would cost $136
million over the 2000-2005 period. The act would affect direct
spending; therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures would apply, but
CBO estimates that any such effects would not be significant.
H.R. 1651 contains no intergovernmental mandates as defined in
the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) and would impose no
significant costs on state, local, or tribal governments. Any
costs incurred by the state of Alaska to manage an agreement
with Canada would be incurred voluntarily.
H.R. 1651 would impose a private-sector mandate, as defined
by UMRA, on some vessel operators. CBO estimates that the cost
of complying with the mandate would be well below the threshold
established by UMRA ($109 million in 2000, adjusted annually
H.R. 1651 would authorize the Fisherman's Guaranty Fund
through fiscal year 2003, and would allow additional fee
payments into that fund. Title II of the act would create a
six-member Yukon River Salmon Panel to advise the Secretary of
State regarding the negotiation of any international agreement
with Canada concerning the management of certain salmon stocks.
This title also would authorize the Secretary of the Interior
to carry out projects to restore such salmon stocks and would
authorize the appropriation of $4 million for each of fiscal
years 2000 through 2003 for these purposes. Title III would
authorize the Secretary of Commerce to purchase, lease, or
charter up to six fishery survey vessels. For this purpose, the
act would authorize the appropriation of $60 million for each
of fiscal years 2002 and 2003.
Estimated cost to the Federal Government: The estimated
budgetary impact of H.R. 1651 is shown in the following table.
The costs of this legislation fall within budget function 300
(natural resources and environment).
By fiscal year, in millions of dollars--
2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005
CHANGES IN SPENDING SUBJECT TO APPROPRIATION
Authorization Level....................................... 4 4 64 64 0 0
Estimated Outlays......................................... 3 4 25 46 34 24
Basis of estimate: For purposes of this estimate, CBO
assumes that H.R. 1651 will be enacted during fiscal year 2000
and that the entire amounts authorized by titles II and III
will be appropriated for each fiscal year. The authorization
level for each of fiscal years 2000 through 2003 contains $4
million for salmon restoration and other activities authorized
under title II. Fiscal years 2002 and 2003 authorization levels
include an additional $60 million annually for the acquisition
of fishery research vessels.
Title I of H.R. 1651 would authorize the Fisherman's
Guaranty Fund through fiscal year 2003, allowing additional
payments of fees into that fund. The Fisherman's Guaranty Fund
pays owners of U.S. fishing vessels for certain financial
losses if their vessels are seized by a foreign nation. Owners
pay fees sufficient to cover the costs of these payments. The
fund has a current balance of $2.8 million. However, no owners
have applied to participate in the program in recent years, and
the funds has paid only one claim since 1987. (That claim
resulted in payments for four vessels totaling less than
$200,000.) Thus, CBO estimates that any additional offsetting
receipts from fees or spending for claims would not be
Pay-as-you-go considerations: The Balanced Budget and
Emergency Deficit Control Act sets up pay-as-you-go procedures
for legislation affecting direct spending and receipts. Because
H.R. 1651 would affect direct spending and receipts, pay-as-
you-go procedures would apply, but CBO estimates any such
effects would not be significant.
Estimated impact on state, local, and tribal governments:
H.R. 1651 contains no intergovernmental mandates defined in the
Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and would impose no significant
costs on state, local, or tribal governments. Any costs
incurred by the state of Alaska to manage an agreement with
Canada regarding salmon stocks originating from the Yukon River
in Canada would be incurred voluntarily.
Estimated impact on the private sector: H.R. 1651 would
impose a private-sector mandate, as defined by UMRA, on some
vessel operators. CBO estimates that the cost of complying with
the mandate would be well below the threshold established by
UMRA ($109 million in 2000, adjusted annually for inflation).
The bill would amend the Atlantic Tunas Convention Act to
prohibit vessel operators that hold federal boat permits in the
harpoon and general categories from using aircraft to locate,
catch, retain, or possess Atlantic bluefin tuna. Less than 1
percent of operators that hold those permits use such aircraft.
The vessel operators that use aircraft catch more Atlantic
bluefin tuna compared with those that do not use such aircraft.
Based on information from government and industry sources,
under H.R. 1651, it is likely that the vessel operators
prohibited from using such aircraft would have a reduction in
their income because their total catch would be less. Moreover,
some of their loss in income could be realized by other vessel
operators not now using aircraft whose catch could increase.
Current estimates of the size of the harpoon and general
fisheries range from $10 million to $20 million annually.
Consequently, CBO estimates that the net direct costs of the
mandate to vessel operators in the affected fisheries would be
well below the private-sector threshold.
Previous CBO estimates: On June 21, 1999, CBO transmitted a
cost estimate for H.R. 1651, the Fisherman's Protective Act
Amendments of 1999, as ordered reported by the House Committee
on Resources on June 9, 1999. The CBO estimate for title I of
the Senate version of H.R. 1651 is identical to our estimate
for the House version of H.R. 1651. The House version of H.R.
1651, however, did not contain a private-sector mandate.
On July 20, 1999, CBO transmitted a cost estimate for H.R.
2181, the Fisheries Survey Vessel Authorization Act of 1999, as
ordered reported by the House Committee on Resources on June
30, 1999. The provisions of H.R. 2181 and those of title III of
the Senate version of H.R. 1651 are similar, but our estimates
are different to reflect the fact that H.R. 2181 would
authorize the appropriation of $60 million for five years
instead of two, as in the Senate version of H.R. 1651.
Estimate prepared by: Federal Costs: Deborah Reis and Mark
Hadley; Impact on State, Local, and Tribal Governments:
Victoria Heid Hall; and Impact on the Private Sector: Jean
Estimate approved by: Peter H. Fontaine, Deputy Assistant
Director for Budget Analysis.
Regulatory Impact Statement
In accordance with paragraph 11(b) of rule XXVI of the
Standing Rules of the Senate, the Committee provides the
following evaluation of the regulatory impact of the
legislation, as reported:
number of persons covered
H.R. 1651, as reported, reauthorizes and extends the
Fishermen's Protective Act and the Yukon River Advisory Panel.
The reported act also authorizes NOAA to acquire new fishery
research vessels and prohibits the use of aircraft in the
General and Harpoon categories in the Atlantic bluefin tuna
fishery. The reported act would have little, if any, regulatory
impact, but a few of acts provisions could impact some
individuals and businesses, and the effect of these sections
can be clarified as follows:
Section 401 of the reported act prohibits the use of aircraft
in the General and Harpoon categories of the Atlantic bluefin
tuna fishery. This section could have the effect of reducing
business opportunities for bluefin tuna permit holders and
aircraft pilots that might be currently available, but the
reduction could only apply to less than one percent of bluefin
tuna permit holders and aircraft pilots. Additionally, the
Commerce Department advisory panel for highly migratory species
unanimously recommended that the Department prohibit the use of
As noted above, section 401 of the reported act could have an
economic impact on some individuals and businesses. However, in
addition to the advisory panel recommendation noted above, the
use of aircraft in the General and Harpoon categories could
have an adverse impact on traditional fishing communities and
the scientific objectives of the federal management plan for
The reported act will not have a significant impact on the
personal privacy of individuals.
H.R. 1651, as reported, should not significantly increase
paperwork requirements for individuals and businesses.
TITLE I--FISHERMEN'S PROTECTIVE ACT OF 1967
Section 101. Short title
This section of the act cites the short title of the reported
act as the ``Fishermen's Protective Act Amendments of 1999.''
Sec. 102. Extension of period for reimbursement under Fishermen's
Protective Act of 1967
This section of the reported act amends Section 7(e) of the
Fishermen's Protective Act of 1967 (22 U.S.C. 1977(e)) to
extend current law from fiscal year 2000 to fiscal year 2003.
It also makes technical changes.
TITLE II--YUKON RIVER SALMON
Sec. 201. Short title
This section cites title II of the reported act as the
``Yukon River Salmon Act of 1999.''
Sec. 202. Yukon River Salmon Panel
This section of the reported act establishes a Yukon River
Salmon Panel and designates the criteria for appointment of
U.S. members to the Panel.
Sec. 203. Advisory Committee
This section of the reported act establishes a Yukon River
Advisory Committee and designates the criteria for appointment
of members to the Advisory Committee.
Sec. 204. FACA exemption
This section exempts the Panel and any advisory committees
created under section 203 of the reported act from the Federal
Advisory Committee Act.
Sec. 205. Authority and responsibility
This section of the reported act designates the State of
Alaska Department of Fish and Game as the responsible
management entity for the U.S. for agreements with Canada
regarding Yukon River Salmon stocks. It also authorizes the
Panel to make recommendations that are advisory in nature to a
number of federal and state entities.
Sec. 206. Administrative matters
This section of the reported act clarifies compensation,
expenses, and treatment as federal employees for members of the
Sec. 207. Yukon River salmon stock restoration and enhancement projects
This section of the reported act authorizes the Secretaries
of Interior and Commerce to carry out projects to restore or
enhance salmon stocks originating in the Yukon River. This
section also provides direction for carrying out such projects
if there is an agreement in effect between the United States
Sec. 208. Authorization of appropriations
This section of the reported act authorizes $4 million for
each of the fiscal years 2000 through 2003 to carry out this
TITLE III--FISHERIES INFORMATION ACQUISITION
Sec. 301. Short title
This section cites the short title of the reported act as the
``Fisheries Survey Vessel Authorization Act of 1999.''
Sec. 302. Acquisition of fishery survey vessels
Subsection (a) of this Section authorizes the acquisition of
up to six fishery research and survey vessels. Subsection (b)
sets requirements for the capabilities of such vessels.
Subsection (c) authorizes $60 million dollars in fiscal year
2002 and fiscal year 2003 for acquiring one vessel in each
respective fiscal year.
Sec. 401. Use of aircraft prohibited
This section of the reported act amends section 7(a) of the
Atlantic Tunas Convention Act of 1975 (16 U.S.C. 971e(a)) to
prohibit the use of aircraft in the General and Harpoon
categories in the Atlantic bluefin tuna fishery.
Sec. 402. Fisheries Research Vessel procurement
This section of the reported act requires the Secretary of
Commerce to procure Fisheries Research Vessels through full and
open competition from responsible U.S. shipbuilding companies
irrespective of size.
Changes in Existing Law
In compliance with paragraph 12 of rule XXVI of the Standing
Rules of the Senate, changes in existing law made by the act,
as reported, are shown as follows (existing law proposed to be
omitted is enclosed in black brackets, new material is printed
in italic, existing law in which no change is proposed is shown
ATLANTIC TUNAS CONVENTION ACT OF 1975
SEC. 7. VIOLATIONS; FINES AND FORFEITURES; RELATED LAWS. [16 U.S.C.
(a) In General.--It shall be unlawful--
(1) for any person in charge of a fishing vessel or
any fishing vessel subject to the jurisdiction of the
United States to engage in fishing in violation of any
regulation adopted pursuant to section 6 of this Act;
(2) for any person subject to the jurisdiction of the
United States to ship, transport, purchase, sell, offer
for sale, import, export, or have in custody,
possession, or control any fish which he knows, or
should have known, were taken or retained contrary to
the recommendations of the Commission made pursuant to
article VIII of the Convention and adopted as
regulations pursuant to section 6 of this Act, without
regard to the citizenship of the person or vessel which
took the [fish.] fish; or
(3) for any person, other than a person holding a
valid Federal permit in the purse seine category--
(A) to use an aircraft to locate or otherwise
assist in fishing for, catching, or retaining
Atlantic bluefin tuna; or
(B) to catch, possess, or retain Atlantic
bluefin tuna located by use of an aircraft.
(b) Failure to Furnish Returns, Records, or Reports.--It
shall be unlawful for the master or any person in charge of any
fishing vessel subject to the jurisdiction of the United States
to fail to make, keep, or furnish anycatch returns, statistical
records, or other reports as are required by regulations
adopted pursuant to this Act to be made, kept, or furnished by
such master or person.
(c) Refusal of Request to Board and Inspect Vessel.--It shall
be unlawful for the master or any person in charge of any
fishing vessel subject to the jurisdiction of the United States
to refuse to permit any person authorized to enforce the
provisions of this Act and any regulations adopted pursuant
thereto, to board such vessel and inspect its catch, equipment,
books, documents, records, or other articles or question the
persons onboard in accordance with the provisions of this Act,
or the Convention, as the case may be, or to obstruct such
officials in the execution of such duties.
(d) Importation of Ineligible Species or Species Under
Investigation.--It shall be unlawful for any person to import,
in violation of any regulation adopted pursuant to section 6(c)
or (d) of this Act, from any country, any fish in any form of
those species subject to regulation pursuant to a
recommendation of the Commission, or any fish in any form not
under regulation but under investigation by the Commission,
during the period such fish have been denied entry in
accordance with the provisions of section 6(c) or (d) of this
Act. In the case of any fish as described in this subsection
offered for entry in the United States, the Secretary shall
require proof satisfactory to him that such fish is not
ineligible for such entry under the terms of section 6(c) or
(d) of this Act.
(e) Sanctions.--The civil penalty and permit sanctions of
section 308 of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and
Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1858) are hereby made applicable to
violations of this section as if they were violations of
section 307 of that Act.
(f) Forfeiture.--All fish taken or retained in violation of
subsection (a) of this section, or the monetary value thereof,
may be forfeited.
(g) Applicability of Other Laws.--All provisions of law
relating to the seizure, judicial forfeiture, and condemnation
of a cargo for violation of the customs laws, the disposition
of such cargo or the proceeds from the sale thereof, and the
remission or mitigation of such forfeitures shall apply to
seizures and forfeitures incurred, or alleged to have been
incurred, under the provisions of this Act, insofar as such
provisions of law are applicable and not inconsistent with the
provisions of this Act.
FISHERMEN'S PROTECTIVE ACT OF 1967
SEC. 7. REIMBURSEMENT FOR SEIZED COMMERCIAL FISHERMEN. [22 U.S.C. 1977]
(a) Agreement to Reimburse for Actual Costs, Confiscation or
Spoilage of Fish, and Loss of Income.--The Secretary, upon
receipt of an application filed with him at any time after the
effective date of this section by the owner of any vessel of
the United States which is documented or certificated as a
commercial fishing vessel, shall enter into an agreement with
such owner subject to the provisions of this section and such
other terms and conditions as the Secretary deems appropriate.
Such agreement shall provide that, if said vessel is seized by
a foreign country and detained under the conditions of section
2 of this Act, the Secretary shall guarantee--
(1) the owner of such vessel for all actual costs,
except those covered by section 3 of this Act, incurred
by the owner during the seizure and detention period
and as a direct result thereof, as determined by the
Secretary, resulting (A) from any damage to, or
destruction of, such vessel, or its fishing gear or
other equipment, (B) from the loss or confiscation of
such vessel, gear, or equipment, or (C) from dockage
fees or utilities;
(2) the owner of such vessel and its crew for the
market value of fish caught before seizure of such
vessel and confiscated or spoiled during the period of
(3) the owner of such vessel and its crew for not to
exceed 50 per centum of the gross income lost as a
direct result of such seizure and detention, as
determined by the [Secretary of the Interior,]
Secretary of Commerce, based on the value of the
average catch per day's fishing during the three most
recent calendar years immediately preceding such
seizure and detention of the vessel seized, or, if such
experience is not available, then of all commercial
fishing vessels of the United States engaged in the
same fishery as that of the type and size of the seized
(b) Distribution of Payments According to Commercial Fishing
Practices and Procedures.--Payments made by the Secretary under
paragraphs (2) and (3) of subsection (a) of this section shall
be distributed by the Secretary in accordance with the usual
practices and procedures of the particular segment of the
United States commercial fishing industry to which the seized
vessel belongs relative to the sale of fish caught and the
distribution of the proceeds of such sale.
(c) Establishment of Fees; Amount of Fees; Credit of Fees to
Separate Treasury Account; Payment From Collected Fees;
Authorization of Appropriations.--The Secretary shall from time
to time establish by regulation fees which shall be paid by the
owners of vessels entering into agreements under this section.
Such fees shall be adequate (1) to recover the costs of
administering this section, and (2) to cover a reasonable
portion of any payments made by the Secretary under this
section. All fees collected by the Secretary shall be credited
to a separate account established in the Treasury of the United
States which shall remain available without fiscal year
limitation to carry out the provisions of this section. Those
fees not currently needed for payments under this section shall
be kept on deposit or invested in obligations of, or guaranteed
by, the United States and all revenues accruing from such
deposits or investments shall be credited to such separate
account. If a transfer of funds is made to the separate account
under section 5(b)(2) with respect to an unpaid claim and such
claim is later paid, the amount so paid shall be covered into
the Treasury as miscellaneous receipts. All payments under this
section shall be made first out of such fees so long as they
are available, and thereafter out of funds which are hereby
authorized to be appropriated to such account to carry out the
provisions of this section.
(d) Finality of Determinations; Insured Losses.--All
determinations made under this section shall be final. No
payment under this section shall be made with respect to any
losses covered by any policy of insurance or other provision of
(e) Effective Date.--The provisions of this section shall be
effective until October 1, [2000;] 2003; except that payments
may be made under this section only to such extent and in such
amounts as are provided in advance inappropriation Acts.
(f) Definitions.--For the purposes of this section--
(1) the term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary of
(2) the term ``owner'' includes any charterer of a
commercial fishing vessel.