Huffman, Case Unveil Magnuson-Stevens Act Reauthorization Discussion Draft to Update Federal Fisheries Management

December 18, 2020

Washington, D.C. – Today, Congressman Jared Huffman (D-San Rafael), Chair of the Water, Oceans, and Wildlife Subcommittee, and subcommittee member Ed Case (D-Honolulu) introduced a discussion draft to reauthorize the Magnuson-Stevens Act (MSA), the primary law governing federal fisheries management and conservation that has made the U.S. a global leader in sustainable fisheries. This draft is the culmination of a year-long listening tour Rep. Huffman led to get feedback on the legislation – part of his ongoing effort to foster a uniquely transparent, inclusive, science-based approach to updating this important law governing fisheries in American waters.

“This draft includes important and timely updates to the MSA as well as provisions to strengthen communities and support those whose lives and livelihoods depend on healthy oceans and fisheries,” said Reps. Huffman and Case.“With the growing impacts of climate change, difficulties due to the ongoing pandemic, and rapidly evolving needs in fisheries management and science, amending and reauthorizing the MSA remains a top priority. We’re looking forward to the next phase of this process and receiving constructive commentary to inform and shape the bill’s introduction next year.” 

In an effort to include as many opinions and viewpoints as possible, Rep. Huffman and Rep. Case held eight listening sessions and covered seven management regions on their nationwide fisheries listening tour. They heard from 80 different experts and stakeholders, in addition to public comments from dozens of members of the public in person and online. From the very beginning, this has been one of the most deliberative, transparent efforts to reauthorize the MSA. 

The text of the MSA Reauthorization discussion draft is here. A one-pager on the legislation is here. A section-by-section summary is here. A cover letter on the legislation can be found here.