Trump’s New Regulations Order Not to Affect Fisheries
Bob McNally 03.02.17
President Trump’s executive order directing that federal agencies choose two regulations for repeal whenever they propose a new one raised the angst of legislators and industry members concerned with the management of the nation’s fisheries.
Trump’s executive order, Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs, directs agencies to repeal two existing regulations for every new regulation and to do it in a way that does not increase the total cost of compliance.
In a Feb. 2 letter to the President, House Natural Resources Committee Ranking Member Raúl Grijalva and Water, Power, and Oceans Subcommittee Ranking Member Jared Huffman warned the President that his executive order would prevent the National Marine Fisheries Service from:
- Setting and adjusting commercial and recreational fishing seasons.
- Adjusting landings quotas or other conservation or management related measures.
- Adopting new or amended fishery management plans without getting advance authority from the administration.
“All fisheries that take place in federal waters require regulatory action to open and close season, set catch limits, modify conservation and management measures, or adjust participation eligibility requirements,” the congressmen wrote. “We urge you to rescind the executive orders immediately and eliminate political interference with the processes that help commercial and charter fishermen earn their livelihoods and allow recreational anglers access to well-managed stocks.”
Last Friday, Drew Minkiewicz, a Washington, D.C., attorney who represents commercial fishing interests and provides counsel on regulatory issues, said Trump’s executive order “is not going to impact or delay the operation of fisheries management at all.” Minkiewicz spoke before the White House announced the President’s latest executive order.
According to Minkiewicz, the administration’s Office of Management and Budget has determined that the executive order applies only to “significant actions” as defined in another executive order issued during the Clinton administration.
“More than 99 percent of NMFS regulations are not deemed significant,” he said. “There could be maybe one rule in the next four years this (the recent executive order) applies to.”