Weekly Policy Watch Updates From The ASA

Your weekly look at how ASA’s government affairs team is hard at work supporting sound fisheries policies throughout the country.

Federal Spending Bill Includes ASA Priorities

Over the weekend, the House and Senate Appropriations Committees released the first package of final Fiscal Year 2024 appropriations bills, expected to be considered by Congress this week. The package includes many provisions to support fisheries conservation and fishing access, including:

  • Prohibition on the Environmental Protection Agency regulating traditional fishing tackle.
  • Improvements to marine recreational data collection, including implementing the Modern Fish Act.
  • Support for state management and stock assessments for red snapper in the Gulf and South Atlantic.
  • Full funding for the National Fish Habitat Partnership.
  • ASA encourages Congress to pass this funding package to support America’s $148 billion recreational fishing economy.

Sportfishing Industry, Anglers Provide $1.3 Billion for Conservation

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced $1.3 billion in appointments to state and tribal conservation agencies through the Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program. These funds are derived from excise taxes paid last year by manufacturers of sportfishing equipment, ammunition, firearms and archery equipment, and a fuel and small engine tax.

Since 1937, more than $28 billion has been distributed through annual apportionments for conservation and public access projects. Read More

ASA Testifies Before Maryland General Assembly

Mike Waine, ASA’s Atlantic Fisheries Policy Director, joined partners in Annapolis to testify before the General Assembly on proposed legislation that would close recreational fishing for striped bass in the Chesapeake Bay for March – adding to an existing April 1-May 15 closure.

The proposal lacks scientific justification and would cause substantial economic harm to the recreational fishing industry.

Read our joint letter to the Committee.Watch Mike’s Testimony


The American Sportfishing Association (ASA) is the sportfishing industry’s trade association committed to representing the interests of the sportfishing and boating industries as well as the entire sportfishing community. We give the industry and anglers a unified voice when emerging laws and policies could significantly affect sportfishing business or sportfishing itself. ASA invests in long-term ventures to ensure the industry will remain strong and prosperous, as well as safeguard and promote the enduring economic, conservation and social values of sportfishing in America. ASA also gives America’s 55 million anglers a voice in policy decisions that affect their ability to sustainably fish on our nation’s waterways through Keep America Fishing, our national angler advocacy campaign. America’s anglers generate nearly $50 billion in retail sales with a $125 billion impact on the nation’s economy creating employment for 800,000 people.