Fish Radio

Sullivan bills push safety regs delay, marketing money

July 7, 2016

U.S. Senator Dan Sullivan (R-AK)

U.S. Senator Dan Sullivan

This is Fish Radio. I’m Laine Welch. Breaks on new safety regs and marketing money. More with Senator Dan Sullivan after this –
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Fishermen are set to get a break on new safety rules aimed at bots that are  more than 25 years old, more than 50 feet in length and operate beyond three miles from shore. Senator Dan Sullivan-

We heard this from everybody and  the frustration about not only the Coast Guard outreach on the regs they are supposed to be promulgating but just how they are not doing anything.  They’ve only sent out drafts for the Pacific, the Gulf of Mexico or the Atlantic. And the current law requires the regs to be promulgated by January 2017, that’s not going to happen and a back date for compliance by 2020.

The bill passed out of the Senate Commerce committee last week following a letter of concern signed by 33 Senators and sent to the U.S. Coast Guard. Now, fishermen will have three years after regulations are written to comply, whenever that might be. Sullivan says all parties will breathe a sigh of relief.

There might be something to the fact that when the law passed in 2010, I’m not so sure the CG was that motivated by the law anyways. My understanding is that this law did not have the support of the industry, and may not have had the support of the CG, it was kind of forced on them and it was not something they were pressing Congress to do.  

Another measure passed unanimously by the Commerce Committee will direct more marketing funds to the seafood industry. The money is mandated by the Saltonstall-Kennedy Act of 1954, and comes from 60 percent of tariffs paid on imported seafood.  But only a token of the hundreds of millions dollars have gone towards the fishing industry. Congress instead has diverted more than 90 percent each year into NOAA’s operating budget.
Essentially takes it back to the original intent of that legislation that requires those involved in determining where the grants will go for marketing and other uses to be fully engaged members of the fishing industry.       

Sullivan also is pushing for rules to require that American-caught seafood is purchased for the   school lunch program.

  Believe it or not there are provisions that allow a loophole to get a lot of Asian caught, Chinese processed fish sticks in our kids lunches that ruin their desire to eat fish for a generation because it’s not very good stuff.  

That’s Alaska’s U.S. Senator Dan Sullivan. Find more Alaska fish news at

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