The American Sportfishing Association worked in concert with the nations other leading recreational fishing and marine conservation organizations to ensure that the Magnuson-Stevens Act reauthorization improves overall fisheries management and specifically for the saltwater recreational angler. The bill requires that the economic impact of all sectors of fishing be addressed when allocating fisheries resources; establishes guidelines if areas are going to be closed to fishing; improved recreational data collection and creates a registry of recreational saltwater anglers.
"For the first time, the bill recognizes a number of issues of importance for recreational fishing," said Mike Nussman, ASA president and CEO. "We, together with other sportfishing groups, have worked hard to promote legislators' understanding of the importance of sportfishing and it appears they listened."
Saltwater anglers contribute over $31 billion annually to the United States economy. Many communities in coastal states depend on sportfishing to support their local economies. Commenting on the importance that good fisheries management has on the quality of the fishing experience, Gordon Robertson, ASAs vice president, stated, "Saltwater anglers and the businesses they support know that the long term health of their sport depends on the health of the resource. We are happy that Senator Stevens and the committee members have seen fit to move forward with increased protection for the resource."
The American Sportfishing Association is the sportfishing industrys trade association, uniting more than 650 members of the sportfishing and boating industries with state fish and wildlife agencies, federal land and water management agencies, conservation organizations, angler advocacy groups and outdoor journalists. The American Sportfishing Association safeguards and promotes the enduring social, economic and conservation values of sportfishing.