(Dec. 14, 2012 - Alexandria, VA)...
On November 26, in a surprise upset, the U.S. Senate failed to advancethe Sportsmen’s Act of 2012 (S. 3525) due to a procedural motion. Thebill ran into trouble when a point of order was raised about whether thebill violated a 2011 budget agreement and a motion to waive the point oforder failed by 10 votes. Six senators were not present and the vote onthe procedural motion to waive the point of order fell mostly alongparty lines. Senators Tester (D-Mont.) and Sessions (R-Ala.), and acoalition of supporting groups, worked hard to resolve the budget pointof order only to have Senator Boxer (D-Calif.) demand inclusion of asweeping federal study describing "all Federal authorities that can helpto eliminate or reduce threats to public health and the environmentfrom lead and other chemical substances or mixtures that are used inammunition and fishing tackle [emphasis added]." Boxer’s languagefurther requested "actions to enhance the use of the authorities." Thebill may yet again come to the Senate floor for a vote but this poisonpill language makes it doubtful that the bill will pass. To see how yourSenator voted on the point of order motion, please visit the votingresults.The ASA staff has been working hard, speaking with Congressional membersregarding the passage of S. 3525.
ICAST and IFTD 2013 Co-Location
Co-locating ICAST and IFTD in the Las Vegas Convention Center from July9 ? 12, creates the world’s largest sportfishing trade show and that isvery attractive business opportunity for a lot of people frommanufacturers to buyers to media. The partnership between the AmericanSportfishing Association (ASA) and the American Fly Fishing TradeAssociation (AFFTA) received unanimous support from both the ASA andAFFTA boards of directors and has overwhelming support from theirrespective memberships. In addition, combining the two shows hasgenerated much positive media attention and discussion among the fishingindustry. Co-locating will increase overall attendance for both showsand will expand business opportunities for manufacturers, buyers andmedia. Both ASA and AFFTA understand that this is a businessrelationship, but one that is expected to further help to bridge the gapbetween fly fishing and conventional markets.
Connect with ICAST on Linkedin
You now have another way to stay connected with the latest news aboutthe world largest sportfishing trade show and network with colleagues inthe fishing industry: Linkedin. You can join by visiting our Linkedinpage. Please note, you must be a verifiable member of the sportfishingindustry in order to join this Linkedin group.
AAA Speaks Out Against E15 in Gasoline
On November 30, motorist advocacy group AAA joined the growing list ofgroups, including ASA, who have opposed the ethanol blend E15 ingasoline. AAA is concerned for the potential engine damage that E15 cancause, and has asked the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to stopthe sale of E15 at gas pumps until better labeling systems has beendevised. AAA would also like a consumer education effort createdregarding the potential engine dangers when using this blend. E15 cancause harm to older-model engines, and at this time certain automakerswill not cover claims caused by E15. ASA opposes the introduction of E15into the marketplace before a thorough review has been completed deemingit safe for all engine types, as it can cause serious damage to smallerengines which are only designed to run on not more than a 10 percentethanol blend.
Fishery Disaster Declared for New Jersey and New York
As a result of the significant damage caused by Hurricane Sandy to therecreational and commercial fishing communities, on November 16, ActingSecretary of Commerce Rebecca Blank announced the determination of afishery resource disaster for New Jersey and New York. The declarationallows Congress to appropriate federal relief funds for assistance toalleviate harm resulting from a natural disaster. ASA stands ready towork with Congress to ensure that funds are appropriated to the regionto aid recreational fishing-dependent businesses and associatedinfrastructure in recovering from Hurricane Sandy. ASA has requestedthat NOAA Fisheries initiate an emergency assessment of the storm’sdamages to fishing-related facilities and businesses to aid in theappropriation of recovery funds.
Florida FWCC Proposes Sport and Game Fish Designations
On December 5, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission(FWCC) approved a draft rule to create official saltwater game fish andsport fish designations. If the final rule is approved it would meancertain species, to be determined at a later time, would becatch-and-release only, and commercial harvest would also be prohibited.Florida does not currently have official saltwater game fish or sportfish designations, which, if enacted, could help highlight and conservesome of Florida’s premier recreational fish and encouraging anglers toadopt voluntary conservation practices such as catch-and-release.Finalization of these proposals will occur at the FWC’s Februarymeetings. Until then public comments can be sent to Marine@myfwc.com
BP Pleads Guilty and is Ordered to Pay $4.5 billion
On November 15, BP pleaded guilty to 14 felony counts and will pay $4.5billion in criminal fines stemming from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oilspill. Of the $4.5 billion, $1.26 billion are direct criminal fines;$2.4 billion will be directed to environmental restoration through theNational Fish and Wildlife Foundation; $1 billion will go to the U.S.Coast Guard for oil cleanup; and $350 million will be directed toprevent new oil spills and new technologies. The $4.5 billion settlementdoes not resolve civil claims that could result from violations of theClean Water Act, which will be apportioned as directed by the RESTOREthe Gulf Coast Act of 2012. The penalties related to the civil claims,which are estimated to be between $5-20 billion, will likely be resolvedin early 2013.
ASA Comments on Atlantic Menhaden Management
On November 16, the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC)closed their public comment period on Amendment II to the MenhadenManagement Plan, which proposed management measures to start restoringmenhaden abundance and availability as a forage species. Menhaden areone of the most ecologically important species in the oceans acting as aforage species for striped bass, bluefish, Atlantic tuna and otherimportant saltwater species. ASA submitted comments urging the ASMFC to endoverfishing of menhaden and set in place management measures thataccount for the important ecological function that menhaden serve forAtlantic marine fisheries.
2012 Fishing Participation Continues to Outpace 2011
In a license index run cooperatively by the American Sportfishing Association (ASA) and theRecreational Boating & Fishing Foundation (RBFF), license sales fromJanuary through September 2012 increased an estimated 5.6 percentcompared to the same months in 2011. This index is based on licensesales reported by 13 states strategically selected across the U.S. Anearly Spring across the country helped sales exceed 2011 levels. Allthirteen states included in this index recorded overall sales increasesin the first three quarters 2012. For more information, contact RobSouthwick at (904) 277-9765.