From the Alabama Department of Agriculture & Industries:Montgomery, Alabama- Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries John McMillan applauds the Alabama Congressional delegation on their tireless efforts towards the passage of H.R. 774.The Illegal, Unreported, Unregulated Fishing Enforcement Act of 2015 strengthens maritime law enforcement’s ability to stop foreign illegal fishing. It also implements the Port States Measures Agreement that denies port entry to foreign vessels engaged in illegal fishing and protects the seafood industry by prohibiting illegally caught products from being sold in U.S. markets. The bill now goes to the President for his signature.
“I want to commend Congressmen Bradley Byrne and Mo Brooks for co-sponsoring such monumental legislation for our Alabama fishing industry,” says McMillan. “Being born and raised in Baldwin County, I know just how vital our commercial fishing industry is to coastal Alabama,” he continued.
“H.R. 774 is another step in the right direction to provide for the safety and marketability of Gulf seafood,” added McMillan, “Our congressional delegation has done a remarkable job in helping to rehabilitate our fishing community after the 2010 gulf oil spill.” With a billion dollar plus annual economic impact to the state, Alabama’s fisheries have taken a hit since the spill. Through the work of the Department of Agriculture and Industries and other state agencies, Alabama’s Gulf seafood has been deemed safe for consumption. With the cooperation of the commercial fishing industry and the department, Alabama’s seafood is on the upswing. Commissioner McMillan noted, “H.R. 774 is another great example of government stepping up to the plate and supporting industry in our country.”