S. Rept. 113-132 - 113th Congress (2013-2014)
January 08, 2014, As Reported by the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee

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[Senate Report 113-132]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]

113th Congress                                                   Report
 2d Session                                                     113-132


                                                       Calendar No. 291



                              R E P O R T

                                 of the



                                 S. 267


                January 8, 2014.--Ordered to be printed

                    one hundred thirteenth congress
                             second session

            JOHN D. ROCKEFELLER IV, West Virginia, Chairman
BARBARA BOXER, California            JOHN THUNE, South Dakota
BILL NELSON, Florida                 ROGER F. WICKER, Mississippi
MARIA CANTWELL, Washington           ROY BLUNT, Missouri
MARK PRYOR, Arkansas                 MARCO RUBIO, Florida
CLAIRE McCASKILL, Missouri           KELLY AYOTTE, New Hampshire
AMY KLOBUCHAR, Minnesota             DEAN HELLER, Nevada
MARK WARNER, Virginia                DAN COATS, Indiana
MARK BEGICH, Alaska                  TIM SCOTT, South Carolina
RICHARD BLUMENTHAL, Connecticut      TED CRUZ, Texas
BRIAN SCHATZ, Hawaii                 DEB FISCHER, Nebraska
ED MARKEY, Massachusetts             RON JOHNSON, Wisconsin
                     Ellen Doneski, Staff Director
                     John Williams, General Counsel
              David Schwietert, Republican Staff Director
              Nick Rossi, Republican Deputy Staff Director
               Rebecca Seidel, Republican General Counsel

                                                       Calendar No. 291
113th Congress                                                   Report
 2d Session                                                     113-132




                January 8, 2014.--Ordered to be printed


     Mr. Rockefeller, from the Committee on Commerce, Science, and 
                Transportation, submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                         [To accompany S. 267]

    The Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, to 
which was referred the bill (S. 267) to prevent, deter, and 
eliminate illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing through 
port State measures, having considered the same, report 
favorably thereon without amendment and recommend that the bill 
do pass.

                          Purpose of the Bill

  The purpose of S. 267, the Pirate Fishing Elimination Act, is 
to make the changes to domestic law necessary for the United 
States to implement the Agreement on Port State Measures to 
Prevent, Deter, and Eliminate Illegal, Unreported, and 
Unregulated Fishing.

                          Background and Needs

  Many fish stocks around the world have become depleted in the 
last several decades as a result of fleet overcapacity, 
overfishing, and ineffective fisheries law enforcement regimes. 
Coastal fishing nations are responsible for managing the fish 
stocks that fall within their domestic waters, which extend 200 
nautical miles from their coastline, also known as their 
exclusive economic zone (EEZ). Unfortunately, many coastal 
nations do not manage fish stocks sustainably, enforce their 
fishery conservation and management measures effectively, or 
coordinate management of shared fish stocks with other fishing 
  The Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act 
(MSA), enacted in 1976 as the Fishery Conservation and 
Management Act of 1976, provides the primary architecture for 
the conservation and management of fisheries in U.S. Federal 
waters.\1\ Under the MSA, the U.S. Government exercises 
sovereign rights and exclusive management authority over fish 
and Continental Shelf fishery resources within the United 
States EEZ. The MSA vests the Secretary of Commerce (Secretary) 
with overall authority for the management of these resources. 
The Secretary generally carries out these responsibilities 
through the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's 
National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS). The MSA calls for 
Regional Fishery Management Councils established by the Act 
(and the Secretary in certain cases) to develop fishery 
management plans, subject to the Secretary's approval, that 
follow the Act's requirements, including rebuilding overfished 
stocks and setting sustainable harvest levels using catch 
limits based on the best available science. The requirements of 
the MSA and the fishery management plans promulgated thereunder 
are enforced by the Secretary and the Secretary of the 
department in which the Coast Guard is operating.
    \1\ Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, 16 
U.S.C. Sec. Sec. 1801-1884 (2012) (first enacted as the Fishery 
Conservation and Management Act of 1976, Pub. L. 94--265, 90 Stat. 331 
  Coordinated management of fish stocks harvested on the high 
seas (i.e., waters beyond the jurisdiction of any nation) is 
accomplished by nations participating in Regional Fisheries 
Management Organizations (RFMOs) or through international 
agreements created to guide and coordinate the fishery 
management activities of multiple nations that target common 
stocks in specific regions. Each nation that chooses to 
participate in an RFMO or an international fishery agreement 
retains its sovereignty, yet is expected to develop domestic 
fisheries laws and regulations consistent with each agreement. 
The United States follows this practice and seeks to enact 
implementing legislation and promulgate regulations where 
necessary in order to meet its commitments in RFMOs and under 
international fisheries agreements. Short of such an agreement 
or implementing legislation, U.S. fisheries managers seek 
discussions with foreign counterparts to address concerns on 
interjurisdictional stock management.
  U.S. international fishery enforcement activities are 
conducted by the Coast Guard and NMFS under a longstanding 
interagency agreement. The Coast Guard, whose eleven statutory 
missions include fisheries law enforcement\2\, is responsible 
for conducting international (as well as domestic) fishery 
patrols and all other at-sea enforcement, while NMFS is 
responsible for dockside and landside enforcement. The Coast 
Guard conducts its international enforcement operations in 
close coordination with the State Department, as required by 
Presidential Directive 27.\3\ NMFS and the Coast Guard also 
provide input to the State Department for the negotiation of 
international fishery agreements and the review and approval of 
foreign fishing vessel permit applications.
    \2\ 6 U.S.C. Sec.  468(a)(1)(D) (2012).
    \3\ See generally Presidential Directive 27, Jan. 19, 1978 
(establishing uniform procedures within the United States Government 
for dealing with non-military incidents which could have an adverse 
impact upon the conduct of U.S. foreign relations).
Foreign Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) Fishing
  The term ``IUU fishing'' describes a range of fishing 
activities, including: the failure to report, or the 
misreporting of, catches; fishing without the permission of a 
coastal country; the reflagging of vessels to countries that 
are unable or unwilling to adequately control their fishing 
activity; and noncompliance with fishing gear and area rules. 
The extent to which IUU fishing occurs is not fully known, but 
some have estimated that it accounts for as much as a fourth of 
the world's fish catch and, as such, represents one of the 
greatest challenges to sustainable global fishery conservation 
and management. It has been estimated in recent years that 
worldwide IUU fish harvests are worth between $10 billion and 
$23.5 billion annually, and represent between 11 million and 26 
million tons.\4\ Annual IUU harvests at these levels likely 
create significant ecological impacts.
    \4\ David J. Agnew et al., Estimating the Worldwide Extent of 
Illegal Fishing, PLoS ONE, Feb. 2009, at 4.
  Worldwide, the amount of IUU fishing appears to be increasing 
as IUU fishermen attempt to avoid stricter fishing rules 
created to address declining fish stocks. Preventing IUU 
fishing on the high seas is difficult due to the vast areas of 
ocean to monitor, enforcement resource limitations, and a high 
volume of operating fishing vessels. Current international 
efforts to eliminate IUU fishing are mainly led through the 
United Nations (U.N.) Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), 
and are primarily focused on persuading individual nations to 
better control and manage their fishing fleets. RFMOs generally 
strive to follow guidelines established by the U.N. to combat 
IUU fishing. The U.N. also plays an important role in 
addressing labor abuses on fishing vessels.
IUU Challenges for Developing Countries
  In an effort to generate revenue, the governments of many 
developing coastal countries have negotiated agreements that 
allow developed countries, including European countries, China, 
and Russia, to harvest their fishery resources. In many 
instances, officials from developing countries have oversold 
fishing rights, thereby increasing potential total catches of 
their fish stocks well beyond sustainable levels. Fishing under 
these circumstances inevitably leads to overexploitation of 
fishery resources, and this problem is exacerbated by the fact 
that many developing coastal countries lack the capacity to 
conduct fish stock assessments, define sustainable harvest 
levels, and monitor compliance with and enforce fishery 
conservation and management measures. Taken together, these 
factors can result in rapid declines in abundance of local fish 
stocks which, in turn, threaten the livelihoods of local 
fishermen. Such circumstances have also led to illegal 
trafficking, exploitation, and physical abuse of what are often 
migrant workers on fishing vessels operating in the waters of 
developing nations.
  In some cases, these circumstances have even caused fishermen 
to turn to piracy. A prime example is the coastal country of 
Somalia. It has been widely reported that there are direct 
connections between the significant increases in piratical 
activity off the Horn of Africa in the past decade and reduced 
fishing opportunities among Somali fishermen during the same 
time period.\5\ The increased pirate attacks seem to have 
originated as a response to foreign IUU fishing and dumping of 
toxic waste in Somali waters, both of which had a negative 
impact on fishing for Somali fishermen, and subsequently 
expanded into a ransom-driven, hostage-taking enterprise. More 
recently, it has been reported that the relationship between 
Somali piracy and IUU fishing has come full circle. In July 
2013, the U.N. Security Council published a special report on 
Somalia which indicates that Somali pirates are now turning 
from hijacking ships to providing ``private security'' for 
vessels illegally fishing in Somali waters.\6\ Specifically, 
the report states that in northern Somalia a number of these 
individuals are reverting to prior, familiar patterns of 
illicit behavior, including armed protection of fishing 
activities and illegal fishing, arms trafficking, human 
trafficking, and transshipment of narcotics.\7\ The U.N. report 
also notes that illegal fishing has been reported to facilitate 
other forms of contraband, including weapons smuggling.\8\ The 
situation in Somalia makes clear that foreign IUU fishing has 
broader implications beyond international fishery conservation 
and management.
    \5\ See, e.g., Jeffrey Gettleman, Pirates Tell Their Side: They 
Want Only Money, N.Y. TIMES, Oct. 1, 2008, at A6; Paul Salopek, Somali 
Pirates Say It's All about Payback, Exacting Tax for Years of Fish 
Poaching, They Say Waters Became Dumping Ground, SEATTLE TIMES, Oct. 
15, 2008, at A9; Todd Pittman, Somali Pirates a Far Cry from Buccaneers 
of Old, ASSOCIATED PRESS ONLINE, Apr. 11, 2009; Jason Straziuso, 
Fishermen See Benefits to Pirates, the Trawlers That Used to Scoop up 
All the Fish, Kenyan Fishermen Say, Have Been Scared Away, L.A. TIMES, 
Mar. 7, 2010, at 11; and Abdiqani Hassan, A Pirate's Life of Luxury 
Comes with Risk, Scorn, Ex-fisherman Lured to Sea by Huge Ransom 
Payouts, CHI. TRIB., Mar. 13, 2011, at 30.
    \6\ U.N. Security Council, Security Council Committee pursuant to 
resolutions 751 (1992) and 1907 (2009) concerning Somalia and Eritrea, 
Report of the Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea pursuant to 
Security Council resolution 2060 (2012): Somalia, 42, U.N. Doc. S/2013/
413 (Jul. 12, 2013).
    \7\ Id.  41.
    \8\ Id.  43.
  In recent years, marine policy experts have recommended a 
number of measures to combat IUU fishing, particularly along 
the coasts of developing countries. These recommendations have 
included ending the system of flags of convenience, improving 
port inspections and strengthening port state controls, and 
reducing the fishing pressure caused by large fishing fleets 
from industrialized nations. These measures require resources, 
including funding, staff, technology, and expertise, that 
remain largely unavailable in many developing countries. Many 
foreign aid organizations, such as the World Bank, attempt to 
direct foreign financial and technical assistance to improve 
the sustainability of coastal nations' fisheries, but the 
United States has undertaken only limited efforts to assist 
developing countries in targeting IUU fishing.
  The Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management 
Reauthorization Act of 2006 (MSRA), Pub. L. 109--479, 120 Stat. 
3575 (2006), which was passed by the 109th Congress and signed 
into law in January 2007, made significant improvements in the 
area of international fisheries conservation. The overarching 
theme of these improvements was the enhancement and expansion 
of the authority of the Secretary to work through various 
multilateral organizations, such as RFMOs, to address IUU 
fishing and bycatch of protected living marine resources 
  Specifically, title IV of the MSRA amended the High Seas 
Driftnet Fishing Moratorium Protection Act (Moratorium 
Protection Act), 16 U.S.C. Sec. Sec.  1826d-1826k (2012), to 
require the Secretary to produce a biennial report to Congress 
which includes: the state of knowledge on the status of 
international living marine resources that are shared by the 
United States or are subject to a treaty or agreement to which 
the United States is a party, including a list of all fish 
stocks classified as overfished, overexploited, depleted, 
endangered, or threatened with extinction by international or 
other authorities charged with management or conservation of 
living marine resources; a list of nations the United States 
has identified as having vessels engaged in IUU fishing, 
bycatch of PLMR, or both; a description of efforts taken by 
listed nations to take appropriate corrective action; progress 
in strengthening the efforts of international fishery 
management organizations to end IUU fishing; and the steps 
taken by the Secretary at the international level to adopt 
measures comparable to those of the United States to reduce the 
impacts of fishing and other practices on PLMR.
  The MSRA also amended the Moratorium Protection Act to, among 
other things: require the Secretary to pursue specific 
improvements to strengthen international fishery management 
organizations through the adoption of IUU vessel lists, 
stronger port State controls, and market-related measures; 
require the Secretary to promote improved monitoring and 
surveillance of international fisheries; authorize the 
Secretary to promulgate implementing rules relating to 
certification for listed nations; and provide authority to 
prohibit the importation into the United States of fish and 
fish products from listed nations that fail to address 
deficiencies in preventing IUU fishing and PLMR bycatch.
The Agreement on Port State Measures
  Internationally, the United States has actively worked to 
strengthen existing RFMOs through renegotiation of their 
underlying agreements or the negotiation of new protocols. With 
substantial U.S. involvement, international fishery management 
organizations have adopted and shared IUU vessel lists; used 
observers and technologies to monitor compliance; promoted and 
used centralized vessel monitoring systems (VMS); established 
trade tracking and documentation schemes; prevented trade in or 
importation of IUU-caught fish or other living marine 
resources; and protected vulnerable marine ecosystems. 
Additionally, at the thirty-sixth session of the U.N. 
Conference of the FAO in 2009, 92 participating nations, 
including the United States, took a significant step towards 
curtailing IUU fishing by adopting the Agreement on Port State 
Measures to Prevent, Deter, and Eliminate Illegal, Unreported, 
and Unregulated Fishing (Agreement on Port State Measures or 
Agreement). The Agreement, of which the United States was a 
primary negotiator and one of its first signatories, is the 
first global instrument focused specifically on combating IUU 
fishing. It sets forth minimum standards for the conduct of 
dockside inspections and training of inspectors and, most 
significantly, would require parties to restrict port entry and 
port services to foreign vessels known or suspected of having 
been involved in IUU fishing, particularly those on the IUU 
vessel list maintained by an RFMO. Since all fish must be 
brought to port to enter into trade, closing ports to illegal 
product is an effective way to prevent, deter, and eliminate 
IUU fishing. The Agreement would also require information 
sharing, including the sharing of inspection results, with 
Parties and other relevant actors to the Agreement when 
evidence of IUU fishing is found during the course of an 
  On November 14, 2011, President Obama transmitted the text of 
the Agreement to the Senate for advice and consent, where it is 
currently pending before the Senate Committee on Foreign 
Relations. Broad ratification and implementation of the 
Agreement was called for at the United Nations General Assembly 
in December 2010 (Res. 65/38), at the twenty-ninth meeting of 
the FAO's Committee on Fisheries in February 2012, and at the 
Joint Meeting of the Tuna RFMOs in La Jolla, CA in July 2012.

                         Summary of Provisions

  The Pirate Fishing Elimination Act, S. 267, would make the 
changes to domestic law necessary for the United States to 
implement the Agreement on Port State Measures to Prevent, 
Deter, and Eliminate Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated 
Fishing. The Secretary would have primary responsibility for 
promulgating regulations and developing procedures necessary to 
carry out the purposes and requirements of the Act, with the 
Coast Guard and NOAA's National Marine Fisheries Service 
serving as primary enforcement authorities for the requirements 
of the Act and regulations promulgated thereunder. The Act 
would authorize the Secretary, in consultation with the 
Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is 
operating, to: (1) designate ports to which foreign-flagged 
fishing or fishing-related vessels may seek entry, and 
establish uniform information-gathering and review processes 
for granting or denying port entry and use of port services to 
such vessels; (2) conduct inspections of such vessels suspected 
of IUU fishing or related activities; (3) deny port entry or 
port services to such vessels that have been engaged in IUU 
fishing; and (4) provide notice, acting through the Secretary 
of State, to relevant flag states, coastal nations, RFMOs, and 
other nations and international organizations regarding a 
vessel that is believed to have engaged in IUU fishing or 
related activities or has been denied port entry or port 

                          Legislative History

  Senator Rockefeller introduced S. 267, the Pirate Fishing 
Elimination Act, on February 11, 2013. S. 267 is cosponsored by 
Senators Begich, Blumenthal, Cantwell, Hirono, Merkley, 
Murkowski, Nelson, Schatz, Whitehouse, and Wyden. Similar 
legislation, S. 1980, was introduced by Senator Inouye during 
the 112th Congress and referred to the Committee on Commerce, 
Science, and Transportation. On July 30, 2013, the Committee 
met in open executive session and, by a voice vote, ordered S. 
267 reported favorably without amendment.

                            Estimated Costs

  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 

S. 267--Pirate Fishing Elimination Act

    S. 267 would authorize the National Oceanic and Atmospheric 
Administration (NOAA) to implement an international agreement 
to reduce illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing. 
Under the bill, NOAA would be required to identify ports that 
can be used by foreign vessels, coordinate inspections of those 
vessels with the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG), deny port entry to 
vessels that have engaged in IUU fishing, and share information 
with foreign governments and other entities regarding the 
results of inspections and any actions taken if IUU fishing is 
discovered. S. 267 also would establish civil and criminal 
penalties for entities that violate provisions in the bill.
    Based on information provided by NOAA and the USCG, CBO 
estimates that implementing the legislation would have no 
significant impact on the federal budget. Implementing S. 267 
would not significantly affect the workload of NOAA and the 
USCG because those agencies already carry out the activities 
required under the bill. Enacting the legislation could 
increase revenues (from civil and criminal penalties) and 
associated direct spending; therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures 
apply. However, CBO estimates that such increases would be 
small and would offset each other in most years.
    CBO has not reviewed S. 267 for intergovernmental and 
private-sector mandates because section 4 of the Unfunded 
Mandates Reform Act excludes from the application of that act 
any legislative provisions that are necessary for the 
ratification or implementation of international treaty 
obligations. CBO has determined that the bill falls within that 
    The CBO staff contacts for this estimate are Jeff LaFave 
and Sarah Puro. The estimate was approved by Theresa Gullo, 
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

  S. 267 would make refinements to NOAA and the Coast Guard's 
existing statutory authorities to better enable them to limit 
and regulate access to U.S. ports and port services in order to 
curtail IUU fishing activity. It would authorize the Secretary 
to designate ports to which foreign vessels involved in fishing 
or fishing-related activity may request entry, and to require 
such vessels to provide advance notice for such requests. It 
would generally require the Secretary and the Secretary of the 
department in which the Coast Guard is operating to deny port 
entry to those vessels known to have engaged in or supported 
IUU fishing, as well as to prohibit vessels already in U.S. 
ports from landing, transshipping, packaging, or processing 
fish where there is evidence they have engaged in or supported 
IUU fishing.
  The provisions of the bill would generally apply with respect 
to foreign vessels seeking entry to or in a port subject to the 
jurisdiction of the United States, vessels of the United States 
seeking entry to or in a port subject to the jurisdiction of 
another party to the Agreement, and persons who are subject to 
the jurisdiction of the United States.

                            ECONOMIC IMPACT

  The legislation is not expected to have a negative impact on 
the Nation's economy. IUU-caught fish significantly undercut 
the value of legally, sustainably caught fish in the United 
States and elsewhere around the world. Because S. 267 would 
substantially curtail the entry of IUU-caught fish into the 
stream of commerce in the United States, it is expected to have 
a positive impact on the domestic fishing and seafood 


  The reported bill would not have any adverse impact on the 
personal privacy of individuals.


  S. 267 would require a vessel covered by the Act to submit to 
the Coast Guard Captain of the Port certain basic information 
about the vessel when it is requesting port entry. However, 
much of the information (such as a vessel's name, type, flag 
state, dimensions, destination, estimated date and time of 
arrival, IMO ship identification number, international radio 
call sign) is already reported and available to the Coast Guard 
via automated information system transmissions, the Coast 
Guard's Marine Information Safety and Law Enforcement System, 
and other sources. Because the bill would require that the 
procedure for submitting vessel information utilize existing 
Coast Guard reporting mechanisms to the maximum extent 
possible, S. 267 is not expected to impose any new paperwork 
requirements on private citizens or businesses.

                   Congressionally Directed Spending

  In compliance with paragraph 4(b) of rule XLIV of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate, the Committee provides that no 
provisions contained in the bill, as reported, meet the 
definition of congressionally directed spending items under the 

                      Section-by-Section Analysis

Section 1. Short Title; Table of Contents.

  This section would provide that this Act may be cited as the 
``Pirate Fishing Elimination Act,'' and would set forth a table 
of contents for the Act.

Section 2. Purpose.

  This section provides that the purpose of the Act is to 
implement the Agreement on Port State Measures to Prevent, 
Deter and Eliminate Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated 
Fishing, done at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the 
United Nations in Rome, Italy, on November 22, 2009.

Section 3. Definitions.

  This section would define the following terms: ``Agreement,'' 
``authorized officer,'' ``conservation and management 
measures,'' ``container vessel,'' ``FAO,'' ``fish,'' 
``fishing,'' ``fishing-related activity,'' ``foreign vessel,'' 
``illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing'' or ``IUU 
fishing,'' ``landing,'' ``listed IUU vessel,'' ``Party,'' 
``person,'' ``port,'' ``previously landed,'' ``processing,'' 
``regional fisheries management organization'' or ``RFMO,'' 
``Secretary,'' ``State,'' ``transshipment,'' ``vessel,'' and 
``vessel of the United States.''

Section 4. Application.

  This section would delineate the vessels and persons to which 
this Act would apply, including foreign vessels seeking entry 
to a port subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, 
U.S. vessels seeking entry to a port subject to the 
jurisdiction of another Party to the Agreement, and each person 
subject to the jurisdiction of the United States. The Act would 
not apply to a container vessel that is not carrying fish or to 
a container vessel with previously landed fish or for which the 
Secretary of Commerce has no clear grounds to suspect it of 
having been engaged in IUU fishing or related activities.

Section 5. Duties of the Secretary.

  This section would authorize the Secretary of Commerce, in 
consultation with the Secretary of State and the Secretary of 
the department in which the Coast Guard is operating, to 
develop regulations and procedures as may be necessary to carry 
out the purposes of this Act and to designate and publicly list 
each port to which a vessel described in section 4 may seek 
entry. This section would also authorize the Secretary of 
Commerce to designate a point of contact to the FAO for 
adhering to the Agreement's requirements regarding the 
electronic exchange of information and to cooperate in 
establishing information-sharing mechanisms relevant to the 
Agreement. The Secretary of Commerce would also be required to 
provide information regarding the legal remedies afforded to 
persons affected by an action under this Act.

Section 6. Advance Notice of Vessel Arrival, Authorization, or Denial 
        of Port Entry.

  This section would require covered vessels to submit to the 
Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is 
operating information required under the Agreement in advance 
of the vessel's arrival to a port. It would direct the 
Secretary of Commerce, coordinating with the Secretary of the 
department in which the Coast Guard is operating and the 
Secretary of State, to develop a procedure for such vessels to 
submit this information, ideally through existing reporting 
mechanisms, and to authorize or deny port entry. The Secretary 
of Commerce would be authorized to deny entry to any listed IUU 
vessel or any vessel that the Secretary has reasonable grounds 
to believe that has engaged in IUU fishing or IUU-related 
activities or has violated this Act. Such vessels would be 
provided notice of the denial of port entry, as would relevant 
coastal nations, RFMOs, and other international organizations. 
Port entry may be permissible to such vessels if they are under 
duress and require assistance, for scrapping purposes, or for 
inspection or other enforcement.

Section 7. Denial of Port Services.

  This section would authorize the Secretary of Commerce to 
deny covered vessels that have been authorized to enter port 
under section 6 use of port services (i.e., landing, 
transshipment, packaging and processing of fish, refueling, 
resupplying maintenance, and drydocking) if: (1) the vessel 
previously entered port without section 6 authorization; (2) is 
a listed IUU vessel; or (3) is under reasonable suspicion by 
the Secretary of Commerce of lacking authorization to fish, 
having taken fish on board in violation of foreign law or any 
conservation and management measures, or engaging in IUU 
fishing or IUU related activities. Port services could be 
authorized for such vessels if these services are essential to 
the safety of the vessel or health of its crew, for scrapping 
purposes, or for inspection or other enforcement. Should the 
Secretary of Commerce determine denial of port services was 
based on inadequate, erroneous, or non-applicable grounds, the 
Secretary would be required to notify the vessel and withdraw 
the denial.

Section 8. Inspections.

  This section would require the Secretary of Commerce and the 
Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is 
operating to conduct vessel inspections for the purposes of the 
Agreement and this Act. The Secretary would be required to 
prioritize these inspections based on whether the vessel has 
been denied entry or use of the port in accordance with the 
Agreement; a request from another relevant Party, State or RFMO 
that a certain vessel be inspected; and whether there are clear 
grounds to suspect the vessel of being engaged in IUU fishing 
or related activities. Under this section, the Secretary of 
Commerce would be required to transmit the results of an 
inspection to the flag nation of the inspected vessel, and, as 
appropriate, each relevant Party, nation, RFMO, international 
organization, and the FAO. Should the inspection provide 
reasonable grounds to believe that the vessel has engaged in 
IUU fishing or related activities, the Secretary would be 
authorized to take enforcement actions under this Act or other 
applicable law and deny the vessel the use of port services.

Section 9. Prohibited Acts.

  This section would make it unlawful for any person to impede 
or refuse to permit boarding to an authorized officer 
conducting investigation or enforcement activities; resist 
lawful arrest; interfere with the detection of a person 
violating this Act; submit false information; forcibly assault, 
resist, harass, or bribe authorized observers or data 
collectors; import, export, transport, sell, receive, acquire, 
or purchase in interstate or foreign commerce any fish or fish 
product taken, possessed, transported, or sold in violation of 
any foreign law or treaty addressing the conservation or 
management of living marine resources, or any conservation and 
management measures; falsify records or identifications of 
fish; or carry out other acts prohibited by this Act.

Section 10. Enforcement.

  This section would require the Secretary of Commerce and the 
Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is 
operating to enforce the provisions of this Act and to 
authorize officers to conduct the enforcement activities of 
this Act. Authorized officers would be permitted to make 
appropriate arrests, searches, inspections, seizures, and 
detentions of persons, vessels, fish or fish products, or 
information relevant to the enforcement of this Act. This 
section also would set forth forfeiture procedures and 
administrative, civil and criminal penalties that would be 
associated with the enforcement and violation of this Act.

Section 11. International Cooperation and Assistance.

  This section would require the Secretary of Commerce, as 
appropriate and feasible, to provide assistance to developing 
nations and international organizations of which such nations 
are members with meeting their obligations under the Agreement, 
including through the use of grants and the transfer of funds, 
subject to the limits of available appropriations, to any 
relevant foreign government, international, non-governmental, 
or intergovernmental organization. The Secretary may, by 
Agreement, utilize the personnel, services, equipment, and 
facilities of any individual, corporation, partnership, 
association, or other entity, and any Federal, State, local, or 
foreign government or any entity of any such government to this 

Section 12. Relationship to Other Laws.

  This section would provide that nothing in this Act would 
displace any requirements imposed by the customs laws of the 
United States or any other laws or regulations enforced or 
administered by the Secretary of Homeland Security; that where 
more stringent requirements regarding port entry or access to 
port services exist under other Federal law, the more stringent 
requirements would apply; and that nothing in this Act would 
affect a vessel's entry into port, in accordance with 
international law, for reasons of force majeure or distress.

Section 13. Authorization of Appropriations.

  This section would authorize such sums as are necessary to be 
appropriated to the Secretary of Commerce to carry out the 
provisions of this Act for fiscal years 2013-2017.

                        Changes in Existing Law

  In compliance with paragraph 12 of rule XXVI of the Standing 
Rules of the Senate, the Committee states that the bill as 
reported would make no change to existing law.