Will Modern Fish Act do anything for N.J. fishermen?

One of the last actions taken by Pres. Donald Trump in 2018 was to sign the Modern Fish Act into law. The act amended some of the recreational fishing management rules in the Magnuson-Stevens Act, or MSA, the principal body of fisheries' laws.

The MSA however, didn't receive a full reauthorization, which is something the fishing industry will try to accomplish this year with the new Congress.

As its full name the "Modernizing Recreational Fisheries Management Act," may imply, the act was geared for the recreational fishing industry.

Except for where commercial fisheries relate to recreational access in mixed-used fisheries in the South Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico, such as red snapper, commercial fishing was basically left out.

The act introduces some new ideas, at least by name, that have been part of the ongoing discussion on fishery management, such as the use of Smart Apps to gather catch data collection and adding ecosystem components, such as the role of forage fish.

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