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							Calendar No. 224
115th Congress      }                      {                  REPORT
                              SENATE                          
 1st Session        }                      {                   115-160
_______________________________________________________________________

                                     

                                                       


      A BILL TO MAKE TECHNICAL AMENDMENTS TO CERTAIN MARINE FISH 
             CONSERVATION STATUTES, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES

                               __________

                              R E P O R T

                                 of the

           COMMITTEE ON COMMERCE, SCIENCE, AND TRANSPORTATION

                                   on

                                 S. 396

[GRAPHIC(S) NOT AVAILABLE IN TIFF FORMAT]


              
              September 19, 2017.--Ordered to be printed
      
                              ______
      
                  U.S. GOVERNMENT PUBLISHING OFFICE 
      
69-010 PDF               WASHINGTON : 2017 

      
      
      
      
      
      
      
      SENATE COMMITTEE ON COMMERCE, SCIENCE, AND TRANSPORTATION
                     one hundred fifteenth congress
                             first session

                   JOHN THUNE, South Dakota, Chairman
 ROGER F. WICKER, Mississippi         BILL NELSON, Florida
 ROY BLUNT, Missouri                  MARIA CANTWELL, Washington
 TED CRUZ, Texas                      AMY KLOBUCHAR, Minnesota
 DEB FISCHER, Nebraska                RICHARD BLUMENTHAL, Connecticut
 JERRY MORAN, Kansas                  BRIAN SCHATZ, Hawaii
 DAN SULLIVAN, Alaska                 EDWARD J. MARKEY, Massachusetts
 DEAN HELLER, Nevada                  CORY A. BOOKER, New Jersey
 JAMES M. INHOFE, Oklahoma            TOM UDALL, New Mexico
 MIKE LEE, Utah                       GARY C. PETERS, Michigan
 RON JOHNSON, Wisconsin               TAMMY BALDWIN, Wisconsin
 SHELLEY MOORE CAPITO, West           TAMMY DUCKWORTH, Illinois
    Virginia
 CORY GARDNER, Colorado               MARGARETWOODHASSAN,NewHampshire
 TODD C. YOUNG, Indiana               CATHERINE CORTEZ MASTO, Nevada
                       Nick Rossi, Staff Director
                 Adrian Arnakis, Deputy Staff Director
                    Jason Van Beek, General Counsel
                 Kim Lipsky, Democratic Staff Director
           Christopher Day, Democratic Deputy Staff Director













 
 

							Calendar No. 224
115th Congress      }                      {                  REPORT
                              SENATE                          
 1st Session        }                      {                   115-160

======================================================================



 
 A BILL TO MAKE TECHNICAL AMENDMENTS TO CERTAIN MARINE FISH CONSERVATION 
                    STATUTES, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES

                                _______
                                

               September 19, 2017.--Ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

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

                              R E P O R T

                         [To accompany S. 396]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, to 
which was referred the bill (S. 396) to make technical 
amendments to certain marine fish conservation statutes, and 
for other purposes, having considered the same, reports 
favorably thereon without amendment and recommends that the 
bill do pass.

                          Purpose of the Bill

    The purpose of S. 396, a bill to make technical amendments 
to certain marine fish conservation statutes, is to make 
technical amendments that would clarify an exemption in the 
Billfish Conservation Act of 2012 (Act of 2012)\1\ and clarify 
the authority of the Secretary of Commerce (Secretary) under 
the Shark Conservation Act of 2010(Act of 2010)\2\.

                          Background and Needs


Billfish Conservation Act of 2012

    More than 2 decades ago, the United States banned the 
commercial sale and harvest of Atlantic-caught billfish 
(marlin, sailfish, and spearfish) in order to maximize 
recreational opportunities for these relatively rare fish. 
Catch-and-release recreational angling for billfish generates 
many millions of dollars in economic benefits to the U.S. 
economy each year.\3\ On October 5, 2012, President Obama 
signed into law the Act of 2012, effectively banning the 
importation of billfish into the continental United States.\4\ 
In the Act of 2012, the term ``billfish'' is defined to mean 
blue marlin, striped marlin, black marlin, sailfish, shortbill 
spearfish, white marlin, roundscale spearfish, Mediterranean 
spearfish, and longbill spearfish, but excludes swordfish. The 
legislation was in response to declining billfish populations 
due to overfishing by non-U.S. commercial fishing fleets. In an 
effort to conserve billfish, the Act of 2012 prohibits the sale 
of billfish, as defined, except in the State of Hawaii, in 
order to respect traditional fisheries.\5\
    While it has been almost 5 years since enactment, the 
rulemaking required to implement the Act of 2012 has not been 
completed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric 
Administration. The reason for the delay is that a drafting 
error in the Act of 2012 may actually continue to allow 
billfish caught in other parts of the world to be shipped into 
the United States via Hawaii's traditional fishing 
exemption.\6\

Shark Conservation Act of 2010

    In January 2011, the Act of 2010 was signed into law. The 
Act of 2010 amended the High Seas Driftnet Fishing Moratorium 
Protection Act\7\ and the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation 
and Management Act\8\ (Magnuson-Stevens Act) to improve the 
conservation of sharks. The Act of 2010 directs the Secretary 
to urge international fishery management organizations to adopt 
shark conservation measures and requires the Secretary to list 
a nation in the biennial report on international compliance if 
the nation's fishing vessels are, or have been, engaged in 
fishing activities that target or incidentally catch sharks in 
waters beyond their jurisdiction. Among other things, 
provisions of the Act of 2010 prohibits any person from 
removing any of the fins of a shark at sea, possessing shark 
fins on board a fishing vessel unless they are naturally 
attached to the corresponding carcass, or transferring or 
landing shark fins.\9\

---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \1\16 U.S.C. Sec. 1827a
    \2\P.L. 111-348, 124 Stat. 3668.
    \3\Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation, ``Billfish Conservation 
Act of 2012 Passes the House of Representatives,'' press release, 
September 12, 2012, at http://sportsmenslink.org/the-media-room/news/
billfish-conservation-act-of-2012-passes-the-house-of-representatives.
    \4\16 U.S.C. Sec. 1827a
    \5\Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation, ``Billfish Conservation 
Act of 2012 Becomes Law,'' press release, October 16, 2012, at http://
sportsmenslink.org/the-media-room/news/billfish-conservation-act-of-
2012-passes-the-house-of-representatives.
    \6\American Sportfishing Association, ``Senators Weigh in on 
Billfish Conservation Act,'' press release, February 17, 2017, at 
http://asafishing.org/senators-weigh-billfish-conservation-act.
    \7\P.L. 102-582, 106 Stat. 4900.
    \8\18 U.S.C. Sec. 1801
    \9\P.L. 111-348, 124 Stat. 3668.
    \10\16 U.S.C. Sec. 1852
    \11\16 U.S.C. Sec. 1852(a)(3)
    \12\16 U.S.C. Sec. 1854(g)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

                         Summary of Provisions

    If enacted, S. 396 would do the following:
           Close the exemption loophole in the Act of 
        2012 by specifying that billfish can only be landed and 
        retained in Hawaii, thus ensuring billfish are not 
        routed through Hawaii and sold to the U.S. mainland.
           Remove an expired offset in the Act of 2010 
        and replace that section with language affirming that 
        the Act of 2010 would not alter or diminish the 
        authority of the Secretary under the Magnuson-Stevens 
        Act.\10\

                          Legislative History

    S. 396 was introduced in the Senate on February 15, 2017, 
by Senator Nelson and is cosponsored by Senators Rubio, Moran, 
and Manchin. On May 18, 2017, the Committee met in open 
Executive Session and, by voice vote, ordered S. 396 be 
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 
Office:

S. 396--A bill to make technical amendments to certain marine fish 
        conservation statutes, and for other purposes

    S. 396 would amend the Billfish Conservation Act of 2012 to 
prevent the transfer and sale of billfish caught and landed by 
U.S. vessels in Hawaii or the Pacific Insular Areas to the 
mainland United States. Under current law, billfish caught and 
landed in Hawaii or the Pacific Insular Areas by U.S. vessels 
can be sold locally or transported and sold in the mainland 
United States. The bill also would amend the Shark Conservation 
Act of 2010 to affirm that the Secretary of Commerce has the 
authority to regulate shark fishing under the Magnuson-Stevens 
Fishery Conservation and Management Act.
    CBO estimates that implementing S. 396 would increase 
revenues from civil penalties resulting from violations of the 
prohibition on selling billfish to the mainland United States; 
therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures apply. However, based on 
information from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric 
Administration (NOAA), CBO estimates that the increased 
revenues would not be significant in any year and over the 
2018-2027 period. Enacting the bill would not affect direct 
spending.
    CBO estimates that enacting the legislation would not 
increase net direct spending or on-budget deficits in any of 
the four consecutive 10-year periods beginning in 2028.
    S. 396 contains no intergovernmental mandates as defined in 
the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) and would not affect 
the budgets of state, local, or tribal governments.
    The prohibitions in S. 396 would impose a private-sector 
mandate, as defined by UMRA. Based on information from NOAA 
about the value of billfish landed in Hawaii and the Pacific 
Insular Areas, CBO estimates that the cost of the mandate would 
total a few million dollars or less and would fall well below 
the annual threshold established in UMRA for private-sector 
mandates ($156 million, adjusted annually for inflation).
    The CBO staff contacts for this estimate are Jacob Fabian 
(for federal costs) and Amy Petz (for private-sector mandates). 
The estimate was approved by H. Samuel Papenfuss, Deputy 
Assistant Director for Budget Analysis.

                           Regulatory Impact

    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. 396, as reported, would not create any new programs or 
impose any new regulatory requirements, and therefore would not 
subject any individuals or businesses to new regulations.

                            economic impact

    S. 396 is not expected to have a negative impact on the 
Nation's economy.

                                privacy

    The reported bill would have no impact on the personal 
privacy of individuals.

                               paperwork

    S. 396 would not increase paperwork requirements for either 
the private sector or public sector.

                   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 
rule.

                      Section-by-Section Analysis


Section 1. Billfish Conservation Act of 2012

    This section would clarify that an exemption provided for 
certain traditional fisheries and markets applies to billfish 
landed and retained locally.

Section 2. Shark Conservation Act of 2010

    This section would amend section 104 of the Act of 2010 by 
deleting an expired offset and replacing it with a rule of 
construction, which would ensure that the Act of 2010 would not 
alter or diminish the authority of the Secretary to conserve 
and manage highly migratory fish species\11\ and Atlantic 
highly migratory species\12\ under the Magnuson-Stevens Act.

                        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 bill, 
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 
in roman):

 AN ACT TO AMEND THE HIGH SEAS DRIFTNET FISHING MORATORIUM PROTECTION 
ACT AND THE MAGNUSON-STEVENS FISHERY CONSERVATION AND MANAGEMENT ACT TO 
                   IMPROVE THE CONSERVATION OF SHARKS


                  [Public Law 111-348; 124 Stat. 3668]

[SEC. 104. OFFSET OF IMPLEMENTATION COST.

  [Section 308(a) of the Interjurisdictional Fisheries Act of 
1986 (16 U.S.C. 4107(a)) is amended by striking ``2012.'' and 
inserting ``2010, and $2,500,000 for each of fiscal years 2011 
and 2012.''.]

SEC. 104. RULE OF CONSTRUCTION.

  Nothing in this title or the amendments made by this title 
shall be construed as affecting, altering, or diminishing in 
any way the authority of the Secretary of Commerce to establish 
such conservation and management measures as the Secretary 
considers necessary and appropriate under sections 302(a)(3) 
and 304(g) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and 
Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1852(a)(3), 1854(g)).

                    BILLFISH CONSERVATION ACT OF 2012


                  [Public Law 112-183; 126 Stat. 1422]

SEC. 4. PROHIBITION ON SALE OF BILLFISH.

                           [16 U.S.C. 1827a]

  (a) Prohibition.--No person shall offer for sale, sell, or 
have custody, control, or possession of for purposes of 
offering for sale or selling billfish or products containing 
billfish.
  (b) Penalty.--For purposes of section 308(a) of the Magnuson-
Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 
1858(a)), a violation of this section shall be treated as an 
act prohibited by section 307 of that Act (16 U.S.C. 1857).
  (c) Exemptions for Traditional Fisheries and Markets.--
          (1) Subsection (a) does not apply to billfish caught 
        by US fishing vessels and landed and retained in the 
        State of Hawaii or Pacific Insular Areas as defined in 
        section 3(35) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery 
        Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1802(35)).
          (2) Subsection (a) does not apply to billfish landed 
        by foreign fishing vessels in the Pacific Insular Areas 
        when the foreign caught billfish is exported to non-US 
        markets or retained within Hawaii and the Pacific 
        Insular Areas for local consumption.
  (d) Billfish Defined.--In this section the term 
``billfish''--
          (1) means any fish of the species--
                  (A) Makaira nigricans (blue marlin);
                  (B) Kajikia audax (striped marlin);
                  (C) Istiompax indica (black marlin);
                  (D) Istiophorus platypterus (sailfish);
                  (E) Tetrapturus angustirostris (shortbill 
                spearfish);
                  (F) Kajikia albida (white marlin);
                  (G) Tetrapturus georgii (roundscale 
                spearfish);
                  (H) Tetrapturus belone (Mediterranean 
                spearfish); and
                  (I) Tetrapturus pfluegeri (longbill 
                spearfish); and
          (2) does not include the species Xiphias gladius 
        (swordfish).

                                  [all]