U.S. Senator Jack Reed’s efforts to give Rhode Island a seat at the table of the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council (MAFMC) got a major boost this week when it was included in the latest version of the Senate Commerce Committee’s draft Magnuson-Stevens Act (MSA) reauthorization bill.
“This is an issue of fairness and our fishermen deserve appropriate representation on the Council. Mid-Atlantic regulated stocks now represent the majority of landings for Rhode Island commercial fishermen," said U.S. Sen. Jack Reed.
The Magnuson-Stevens Act, which governs marine fisheries management in U.S. waters, expired last September. Both the Senate Commerce Committee and the House Natural Resources Committee are currently drafting separate proposals to update the law.
Senator Reed wrote the Rhode Island Fishermen’s Fairness Act (S. 713) to add Rhode Island to the list of seven states with voting representation on the MAFMC, a regional management board that establishes fishery management rules for stocks primarily caught in federal waters adjacent to the mid-Atlantic coast.
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