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105th Congress                                                   Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

 1st Session                                                    105-169
_______________________________________________________________________


 
       ATLANTIC STRIPED BASS CONSERVATION ACT AMENDMENTS OF 1997

                                _______
                                

  July 8, 1997.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the 
              State of the Union and ordered to be printed

_______________________________________________________________________


  Mr. Young, from the Committee on Resources, submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 1658]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

  The Committee on Resources, to whom was referred the bill 
(H.R. 1658) to reauthorize and amend the Atlantic Striped Bass 
Conservation Act and related laws, having considered the same, 
report favorably thereon with an amendment and recommend that 
the bill as amended do pass.
  The amendment is as follows:
  Strike out all after the enacting clause and insert in lieu 
thereof the following:

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

  This Act may be cited as the ``Atlantic Striped Bass Conservation Act 
Amendments of 1997''.

SEC. 2. REAUTHORIZATION AND AMENDMENT OF ATLANTIC STRIPED BASS 
                    CONSERVATION ACT.

  The Atlantic Striped Bass Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 1851 note) is 
amended to read as follows:

``SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

  ``This Act may be cited as the `Atlantic Striped Bass Conservation 
Act'.

``SEC. 2. FINDINGS AND PURPOSES.

  ``(a) Findings.--The Congress finds and declares the following:
          ``(1) Atlantic striped bass are of historic commercial and 
        recreational importance and economic benefit to the Atlantic 
        coastal States and to the Nation.
          ``(2) No single government entity has full management 
        authority throughout the range of the Atlantic striped bass.
          ``(3) The population of Atlantic striped bass--
                  ``(A) has been subject to large fluctuations due to 
                natural causes, fishing pressure, environmental 
                pollution, loss and alteration of habitat, inadequacy 
                of fisheries conservation and management practices, and 
                other causes; and
                  ``(B) risks potential depletion in the future without 
                effective monitoring and conservation and management 
                measures.
          ``(4) It is in the national interest to implement effective 
        procedures and measures to provide for effective 
        interjurisdictional conservation and management of this 
        species.
  ``(b) Purpose.--It is therefore declared to be the purpose of the 
Congress in this Act to support and encourage the development, 
implementation, and enforcement of effective interstate action 
regarding the conservation and management of the Atlantic striped bass.

``SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS.

  ``As used in this Act--
          ``(1) the term `Magnuson Act' means the Magnuson-Stevens 
        Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1801 et 
        seq.).
          ``(2) The term `Atlantic striped bass' means members of 
        stocks or populations of the species Morone saxatilis, which 
        ordinarily migrate seaward of the waters described in paragraph 
        (3)(A)(i).
          ``(3) The term `coastal waters' means--
                  ``(A) for each coastal State referred to in paragraph 
                (4)(A)--
                          ``(i) all waters, whether salt or fresh, of 
                        the coastal State shoreward of the baseline 
                        from which the territorial sea of the United 
                        States is measured; and
                          ``(ii) the waters of the coastal State 
                        seaward from the baseline referred to in clause 
                        (i) to the inner boundary of the exclusive 
                        economic zone;
                  ``(B) for the District of Columbia, those waters 
                within its jurisdiction; and
                  ``(C) for the Potomac River Fisheries Commission, 
                those waters of the Potomac River within the boundaries 
                established by the Potomac River Compact of 1958.
          ``(4) The term `coastal State' means--
                  ``(A) Pennsylvania and each State of the United 
                States bordering on the Atlantic Ocean north of the 
                State of South Carolina;
                  ``(B) the District of Columbia; and
                  ``(C) the Potomac River Fisheries Commission 
                established by the Potomac River Compact of 1958.
          ``(5) The term `Commission' means the Atlantic States Marine 
        Fisheries Commission established under the interstate compact 
        consented to and approved by the Congress in Public Laws 77-539 
        and 81-721.
          ``(6) The term `exclusive economic zone' has the meaning 
        given such term in section 3(6) of the Magnuson Act (16 U.S.C. 
        1802(6)).
          ``(7) The term `fishing' means--
                  ``(A) the catching, taking, or harvesting of Atlantic 
                striped bass, except when incidental to harvesting that 
                occurs in the course of commercial or recreational fish 
                catching activities directed at a species other than 
                Atlantic striped bass;
                  ``(B) the attempted catching, taking, or harvesting 
                of Atlantic striped bass; and
                  ``(C) any operation at sea in support of, or in 
                preparation for, any activity described in subparagraph 
                (A) or (B).
        The term does not include any scientific research authorized by 
        the Federal Government or by any State government.
          ``(8) The term `moratorium area' means the coastal waters 
        with respect to which a declaration under section 5(a) applies.
          ``(9) The term `moratorium period' means the period beginning 
        on the day on which moratorium is declared under section 5(a) 
        regarding a coastal State and ending on the day on which the 
        Commission notifies the Secretaries that that State has taken 
        appropriate remedial action with respect to those matters that 
        were the case of the moratorium being declared.
          ``(10) The term `Plan' means a plan for managing Atlantic 
        striped bass, or an amendment to such plan, that is prepared 
        and adopted by the Commission.
          ``(11) The term `Secretary' means the Secretary of Commerce 
        or a designee of the Secretary of the Secretary of Commerce.
          ``(12) The term `Secretaries' means the Secretary of Commerce 
        and the Secretary of the Interior or their designees.

``SEC. 4. MONITORING OF IMPLEMENTATION AND ENFORCEMENT BY COASTAL 
                    STATES.

  ``(a) Determination.--During December of each fiscal year, and at any 
other time it deems necessary the Commission shall determine--
          ``(1) whether each coastal State has adopted all regulatory 
        measures necessary to fully implement the Plan in its coastal 
        waters; and
          ``(2) whether the enforcement of the Plan by each coastal 
        State is satisfactory.
  ``(b) Satisfactory State Enforcement.--For purposes of subsection 
(a)(2), enforcement by a coastal State shall not be considered 
satisfactory by the Commission if, in its view, the enforcement is 
being carried out in such a manner that the implementation of the Plan 
within the coastal waters of the State is being, or will likely be, 
substantially and adversely affected.
  ``(c) Notification of Secretaries.--The Commission shall immediately 
notify the Secretaries of each negative determination made by it under 
subsection (a).

``SEC. 5. MORATORIUM.

  ``(a) Secretarial Action After Notification.--Upon receiving notice 
from the Commission under section 4(c) of a negative determination 
regarding a coastal State, the Secretaries shall determine jointly, 
within thirty days, whether that coastal State is in compliance with 
the Plan and, if the State is not in compliance, the Secretaries shall 
declare jointly a moratorium on fishing for Atlantic striped bass 
within the coastal waters of that coastal State. In making such a 
determination, the Secretaries shall carefully consider and review the 
comments of the Commission and that coastal State in question.
  ``(b) Prohibited Acts During Moratorium.--During a moratorium period, 
it is unlawful for any person--
          ``(1) to engage in fishing within the moratorium area;
          ``(2) to land, or attempt to land, Atlantic striped bass that 
        are caught, taken, or harvested in violation of paragraph (1);
          ``(3) to land lawfully harvested Atlantic striped bass within 
        the boundaries of a coastal State when a moratorium declared 
        under subsection (a) applies to that State; or
          ``(4) to fail to return to the water Atlantic striped bass to 
        which the moratorium applies that are caught incidental to 
        harvesting that occurs in the course of commercial or 
        recreational fish catching activities, regardless of the 
        physical condition of the striped bass when caught.
  ``(c) Civil Penalties.--
          ``(1) Civil penalty.--Any person who commits any act that is 
        unlawful under subsection (b) shall be liable to the United 
        States for a civil penalty as provided by section 308 of the 
        Magnuson Act (16 U.S.C. 1858).
          ``(2) Civil forfeitures.--
                  ``(A) In general.--Any vessel (including its gear, 
                equipment, appurtenances, stores, and cargo) used, and 
                any fish (or the fair market value thereof) taken or 
                retained, in any manner, in connection with, or as the 
                result of, the commission of any act that is unlawful 
                under subsection (b) shall be subject to forfeiture to 
                the United States as provided in section 310 of the 
                Magnuson Act (16 U.S.C. 1860).
                  ``(B) Disposal of fish.--Any fish seized pursuant to 
                this Act may be disposed of pursuant to the order of a 
                court of competent jurisdiction, or, if perishable, in 
                a manner prescribed in regulations.
  ``(d) Enforcement.--A person authorized by the Secretary or the 
Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is operating may 
take any action to enforce a moratorium declared under subsection (a) 
that an officer authorized by the Secretary under section 311(b) of the 
Magnuson Act (16 U.S.C. 1861(b)) may take to enforce that Act (16 
U.S.C. 1801 et seq.). The Secretary may, by agreement, on a 
reimbursable basis or otherwise, utilize the personnel, services, 
equipment (including aircraft and vessels), and facilities of any other 
Federal department or agency and of any agency of a State in carrying 
out that enforcement.
  ``(e) Regulations.--The Secretary may issue regulations to implement 
this section.

``SEC. 6. CONTINUING STUDIES OF STRIPED BASS POPULATIONS.

  ``(a) In General.--For the purposes of carrying out this Act, the 
Secretaries shall conduct continuing, comprehensive studies of Atlantic 
striped bass stocks. These studies shall include, but shall not be 
limited to, the following:
          ``(1) Annual stock assessments, using fishery-dependent and 
        fishery-independent data, for the purposes of extending the 
        long-term population record generated by the annual striped 
        bass study conducted by the Secretaries before 1994 and 
        understanding the population dynamics of Atlantic striped bass.
          ``(2) Investigations of the causes of fluctuations in 
        Atlantic striped bass populations.
          ``(3) Investigations of the effects of water quality, land 
        use, and other environmental factors on the recruitment, 
        spawning potential, mortality, and abundance of Atlantic 
        striped bass populations, including the Delaware River 
        population.
          ``(4) Investigations of--
                  ``(A) the interactions between Atlantic striped bass 
                and other fish, including bluefish, menhaden, mackerel, 
                and other forage fish or possible competitors, stock 
                assessments of these species, to the extent 
                appropriate; and
                  ``(B) the effects of interspecies predation and 
                competition on the recruitment, spawning potential 
                mortality, and abundance of Atlantic striped bass.
  ``(b) Reports.--The Secretaries shall make biennial reports to the 
Congress and to the Commission concerning the progress and findings of 
studies conducted under subsection (a) and shall make those reports 
public. Such reports shall, to the extent appropriate, contain 
recommendations of actions which could be taken to encourage the 
sustainable management of Atlantic striped bass.

``SEC. 7. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS; COOPERATIVE AGREEMENTS.

  ``(a) Authorization.--For each of fiscal years 1998, 1999, and 2000, 
there are authorized to be appropriated to carry out this Act--
          ``(1) $800,000 to the Secretary of Commerce; and
          ``(2) $250,000 to the Secretary of the Interior.
  ``(b) Cooperative Agreements.--The Secretaries may enter into 
cooperative agreements with the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries 
Commission or with States, for the purpose of using amounts 
appropriated pursuant to this section to provide financial assistance 
for carrying out the purposes of this Act.

``SEC. 8. PUBLIC PARTICIPATION IN PREPARATION OF MANAGEMENT PLANS AND 
                    AMENDMENTS.

  ``(a) Standards and Procedures.--In order to ensure the opportunity 
for public participation in the preparation of management plans and 
amendments to management plans for Atlantic striped bass, the 
Commission shall prepare such plans and amendments in accordance with 
the standards and procedures established under section 805(a)(2) of the 
Atlantic Coastal Fisheries Cooperative Management Act.
  ``(b) Application.--Subsection (a) shall apply to management plans 
and amendments adopted by the Commission after the 6-month period 
beginning on the date of enactment of the Atlantic Striped Bass 
Conservation Act Amendments of 1997.

``SEC. 9. PROTECTION OF STRIPED BASS IN THE EXCLUSIVE ECONOMIC ZONE.

  ``(a) Regulation of Fishing in Exclusive Economic Zone.--The 
Secretary shall promulgate regulations governing fishing for Atlantic 
striped bass in the exclusive economic zone that the Secretary 
determines are--
          ``(1) consistent with the national standards set forth in 
        section 301 of the Magnuson Act (16 U.S.C. 1851);
          ``(2) compatible with the Plan and each Federal moratorium in 
        effect on fishing for Atlantic striped bass within the coastal 
        waters of a coastal State; and
          ``(3) sufficient to assure the long-term conservation of 
        Atlantic striped bass populations.
  ``(b) Consultation; Periodic Review of Regulations.--In preparing 
regulations under subsection (a), the Secretary shall consult with the 
Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, the appropriate Regional 
Fishery Management Councils, and each affected Federal, State, and 
local government entity. The Secretary shall periodically review 
regulations promulgated under subsection (a), and if necessary to 
ensure their continued consistency with the requirements of subsection 
(a), shall amend those regulations.
  ``(c) Applicability of Magnuson Act Provisions.--The provisions of 
sections 307, 308, 309, 310, and 311 of the Magnuson Act (16 U.S.C. 
1857, 1858, 1859, 1860, and 1861) regarding prohibited acts, civil 
penalties, criminal offenses, civil forfeitures, and enforcement shall 
apply with respect to regulations and any plan issued under subsection 
(a) of this section as if such regulations or plan were issued under 
the Magnuson Act.''.

SEC. 3. REPEALS.

  (a) Anadromous Fish Conservation Act.--Section 7 of the Anadromous 
Fish Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 757g) is repealed.
  (b) Albemarle Sound-Roanoke River Basin.--Section 5 of the Act 
entitled ``An Act to authorize appropriations to carry out the Atlantic 
Striped Bass Conservation Act for fiscal years 1989 through 1991, and 
for other purposes'', approved November 3, 1988 (16 U.S.C. 1851 note; 
102 Stat. 2984), relating to studies of the Albermarle Sound-Roanoke 
River Basin striped bass stock, is repealed.
  (c) Regulation of Fishing in Exclusive Economic Zone.--Section 6 of 
the Act entitled ``An Act to authorize appropriations to carry out the 
Atlantic Striped Bass Conservation Act for fiscal years 1989 through 
1991, and for other purposes'', approved November 3, 1988 (102 Stat. 
2986; 16 U.S.C. 1851 note) is repealed.

                          Purpose of the Bill

    The purpose of H.R. 1658 is to reauthorize and amend the 
Atlantic Striped Bass Conservation Act and related laws.

                  Background and Need for Legislation

    Atlantic striped bass (or ``rockfish'' in the Chesapeake 
Bay) are an important commercial and recreational fish found 
along the U.S. East Coast from Maine to South Carolina. They 
are anadromous, living their adult lives in the ocean but 
returning to estuaries and rivers to spawn each spring. Adult 
striped bass migrate seasonally up and down the East Coast, 
wintering in the waters off the Carolinas and ranging as far 
north as Maine in the summer. They usually remain inshore in 
State waters and rarely venture into Federal waters (beginning 
three miles offshore). Hence, the Atlantic striped bass fishery 
is subject to the regulation of many States.
    Recreational fishermen consider striped bass one of the 
premier saltwater game fish along the East Coast. There is a 
commercial fishery for striped bass, but the majority of fish 
are caught by recreational anglers, who support a coast-wide 
industry of charter boats, bait and tackle shops, and related 
businesses.
    When Europeans first colonized America, striped bass were 
so common that it was said that one could walk across the 
Delaware River on the backs of stripers. Since that time, the 
striped bass population has fluctuated radically between 
abundance and scarcity. In the early 1970s, striped bass were 
as abundant as they had ever been and supported a large 
commercial fishery. By the late 1970s, however, heavy fishing 
pressure on the species, degradation of water quality in 
estuaries, and other poorly understood factors all coincided, 
and a severe population crash ensued. Commercial landings 
plummeted from 14.7 million pounds in 1973 to 2.9 million 
pounds in 1984, and the species nearly disappeared as a game 
fish. In 1979, Congress recognized a need to address this 
problem, and authorized the Emergency Striped Bass Study as 
part of the Anadromous Fish Conservation Act. This study, 
carried out jointly by the National Marine Fisheries Service 
(NMFS) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), 
addressed the issues of water pollution, climate change, 
predation and competition, and fishing mortality in a search 
for the cause of the striped bass decline. However, the primary 
conclusion of the study was that, regardless of the cause, 
major reductions in fishing mortality were required if the 
species was to recover.
    In 1981, the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission 
(ASMFC) prepared the first coast-wide management plan for 
Atlantic striped bass. To ensure that the States would comply 
with the plan, Congress passed the Atlantic Striped Bass 
Conservation Act of 1984 (ASBCA). The ASBCA created a means for 
enforcing the interstate management plan. Under the ASBCA, any 
State that failed to comply with the plan would incur a Federal 
moratorium on fishing for striped bass within its waters. With 
this enforcement authority in place, the States complied with 
the strict harvest limits set by the ASMFC, and the striped 
bass population began to recover.
    Amendments to the ASBCA enacted in 1988 authorized NMFS to 
regulate the Atlantic striped bass fishery in Federal waters 
from three to 200 miles offshore to support the coastal fishery 
management plan. In 1990, to ensure the effectiveness of the 
strict catch limits in State waters, NMFS declared a moratorium 
on fishing for striped bass in Federal waters. This moratorium 
remains in effect.
    In addition to the enforcement provisions, the ASBCA 
authorized a continuing annual study and population assessment 
of striped bass stocks, also conducted jointly by NMFS and 
USFWS, to succeed the Emergency Striped Bass Study. Under these 
two study authorizations, NMFS and USFWS performed annual stock 
assessments from 1979 to 1994. These stock assessments provided 
fishery-independent population data that proved to be an 
important management tool for the ASMFC. The ASBCA was 
reauthorized in 1986 and again in 1991. In 1994, the 
authorization for the study expired, and funding ceased.
    The final Striped Bass Study in 1994 showed that most 
population indices had returned to pre-decline levels, and 
ASMFC declared the species to be fully restored. In 1995, they 
adopted Amendment 5 to the Striped Bass Management Plan, which 
called for a gradual increase in fishing mortality over several 
years. Since that time, ASMFC has gradually increased the 
allowable catch for both recreational and commercial fishermen. 
In short, the striped bass restoration program has been a 
dramatic success. Striped bass are once again abundant in bays 
and rivers all along the East Coast.
    In 1990, Congress enacted the Atlantic Coastal Fisheries 
Cooperative Management Act. This Act, modeled after the ASBCA, 
extended the moratorium authority in the ASBCA to apply to 
other East Coast fisheries that are managed under ASMFC 
management plans.
    Since 1994, there have been several attempts to reauthorize 
the ASBCA. In the 104th Congress, the House passed two separate 
authorization bills, H.R. 1139 and H.R. 4139, but the Senate 
did not act on either one. Thus, despite efforts over the past 
two years to reinstitute the Striped Bass Study and continue 
the remarkably successful restoration program, the funding 
authorization has not been extended.
    At present, the striped bass population appears to be 
healthy. However, the lack of a centralized striped bass study 
has reduced the information available to the ASMFC as it plans 
future management actions. The Committee notes that the causes 
of the huge population fluctuations of the last two centuries 
are not well understood. Thus, the near-record abundance of 
striped bass at present is no assurance that another population 
crash will not occur in the future. The Committee feels that 
the only way to ensure that striped bass remain abundant in the 
future is to continue regular and comprehensive population 
assessments and studies so the ASMFC has the best possible data 
on which to base its management policies. H.R. 1658 
reinstitutes the Striped Bass Study and ensures that the best 
possible information is available when future management 
policies are decided.
    In addition, the present abundance of striped bass appears 
to be coincident with significant population changes in other 
species. For example, at an April 21, 1997, hearingbefore the 
Subcommittee on Fisheries Conservation, Wildlife, and Oceans on the 
subject of the relationship between striped bass, bluefish, and forage 
fish, some fishermen and scientists reported declines in the 
availability of bluefish in coastal waters, and theorized that the 
abundant striped bass, which compete with bluefish for a common food 
supply, may be reducing the bluefish population. This opens the 
possibility that the management of other species may affect striped 
bass populations.

                            Committee Action

    H.R. 1658 was introduced on May 16, 1997, by Congressman 
Jim Saxton (R-NJ). It was referred to the Committee on 
Resources, and within the Committee to the Subcommittee on 
Fisheries Conservation, Wildlife, and Oceans.
    On April 21, 1997, the Subcommittee held a hearing on a 
related matter, the interactions between striped bass, 
bluefish, and forage fish. Witnesses at this hearing included 
Mr. Richard Schaefer, Chief, Office of Intergovernmental and 
Recreational Fisheries, NMFS; Mr. Robert Shinn, Commissioner, 
New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection; Mr. Jack 
Dunnigan, Director, Atlantic States Marine Fisheries 
Commission; Dr. Ken Able, Director, Rutgers University Marine 
Field Station; Mr. Tom Fote, Legislative Chairman, Jersey Coast 
Anglers' Association; Mr. Jim Donofrio, Executive Director, 
Recreational Fishing Alliance; and Mr. Charles Bergmann of 
Lund's Fisheries.
    On May 22, 1997, the Subcommittee met to mark up H.R. 1658. 
There were no amendments, and the Subcommittee ordered the bill 
favorably reported to the Full Committee by voice vote.
    On June 25, 1997, the full Committee on Resources met to 
consider H.R. 1658. An amendment in the nature of a substitute 
to make the findings section reflect the current state of the 
striped bass fisheries, to allow the designees of the 
Secretaries of Commerce and Interior to take actions under the 
ASBCA, to provide authorization of appropriations to the 
Secretary of the Interior, and to make technical changes was 
offered by Congressman Saxton, and adopted by voice vote. The 
bill, as amended, was then ordered favorably reported to the 
House of Representatives by voice vote.

                      Section-by-Section Analysis

                         Section 1. Short Title

    The title of this bill is ``The Atlantic Striped Bass 
Conservation Act Amendments of 1997.''

   Section 2. Reauthorization and Amendment of Atlantic Striped Bass 
                            Conservation Act

    This section amends the Atlantic Striped Bass Conservation 
Act of 1984 (ASBCA) by substituting a revised version. H.R. 
1658 differs from the existing ASBCA in that it: (a) authorizes 
funding to carry out the ASBCA for Fiscal Years 1998, 1999, and 
2000; (b) clarifies and amends some sections of the ASBCA to 
increase consistency with the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries 
Cooperative Management Act; and (c) consolidates and modifies 
existing authorizations of scientific studies to remove 
duplicative law and address current issues in the striped bass 
fishery.
    The specific differences between the existing ASBCA and 
H.R. 1658 are as follows:
    Section 2. Findings and Purposes. In current law, Section 
2, paragraph (3) refers to the large decline in striped bass 
populations that led to enactment of the original ASBCA. The 
striped bass population has now recovered, and the findings are 
modified here to reflect that the striped bass population is no 
longer severely reduced. H.R. 1658 notes generally that striped 
bass have historically been subject to large population swings, 
and may be at risk in the future without effective monitoring 
and management. In addition, H.R. 1658 clarifies other 
findings.
    Section 3. Definitions. In current law, the definition of 
``Plan'' references a fishery management plan which has been 
superseded by more recent amendments. H.R. 1658 clarifies this 
definition. Definitions of ``moratorium area,'' ``moratorium 
period,'' and ``exclusive economic zone'' are moved to this 
section from other parts of the ASBCA for clarity. In addition, 
the definitions of ``Secretary'' and ``Secretaries'' are 
modified to make clear that the Secretaries of Commerce and 
Interior are authorized to delegate their responsibilities 
under the ASBCA to other agency officials. The Committee 
assumes that this change will reduce administrative barriers to 
interagency cooperation on the Striped Bass Study.
    Section 4. Commission Functions; Monitoring of 
Implementation and Enforcement by Coastal States. Section 4(b) 
in current law requires the Secretaries of Commerce and 
Interior to declare a moratorium on fishing for Atlantic 
striped bass within the waters of a State that they find to be 
out of compliance with the fishery management plan. This 
authority is moved to Section 5(a) for clarity.
    Section 5. Moratorium. Section 5(a) in current law, 
containing definitions of ``moratorium area'' and ``moratorium 
period,'' is moved to Section 3 (Definitions) for clarity. 
Section 4(b) in current law (described above) is redesignated 
as Section 5(a) for clarity.
    Subsections (c), (d), and (e) in current law, which deal 
with enforcement of moratoria declared by the Secretaries of 
Commerce and Interior, are replaced in H.R. 1658 by 
corresponding language from the Atlantic States Marine 
Fisheries Cooperative Management Act, for purposes of 
consistency between the two Acts. This does not result in any 
substantive changes.
    Section 6. Continuing Studies of Striped Bass Populations. 
In current law, studies of striped bass populations are 
authorized under three different Acts. This section unifies 
these into one study authorization. It modifies the study 
objectives to reflect current issues in the striped bass 
fishery, specifically the interrelationship between striped 
bass, bluefish, forage fish, and other possible competitors, 
and the effect of interspecies predation and competition on 
theabundance of striped bass and bluefish. In addition, it requires the 
Secretary of Commerce to issue reports on the results of these studies 
biennially, instead of annually as in current law.
    Section 7. Authorization of Appropriations; Cooperative 
Agreements. This section authorizes appropriations of $800,000 
to the Secretary of Commerce, and $250,000 to the Secretary of 
the Interior, for each of Fiscal Years 1998, 1999, and 2000.
    These authorization levels are consistent with past 
authorization and appropriations levels. The existing ASBCA 
authorized ``such sums as are necessary or appropriate'' 
through Fiscal Year 1994, and the Anadromous Fish Conservation 
Act, which contains one of the study authorizations that would 
be consolidated into this bill, authorized $1,000,000 annually 
through Fiscal Year 1994. Between Fiscal Years 1980 and 1994, 
Striped Bass Study appropriations have ranged between $300,000 
and $1.55 million, averaging $860,000 annually. In Fiscal Year 
1997, Congress appropriated $785,000 for combined striped bass 
and bluefish studies.
    By authorizing separate appropriations to the Secretaries 
of Commerce and Interior, the Committee intends to make clear 
that funds appropriated to one agency will not be transferred 
to the other.
    Section 8. Public Participation in Preparation of 
Management Plans and Amendments. This section replaces Section 
8 in current law, which contains a one-time reporting 
requirement that was fulfilled in 1985. It adds a new 
requirement for public participation in the development of 
striped bass management plans. This change would make the ASBCA 
consistent with the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries 
Cooperative Management Act.
    Section 9. Protection of Striped Bass in the Exclusive 
Economic Zone. This section directs the Secretary of Commerce 
to regulate fishing for striped bass in the Exclusive Economic 
Zone (EEZ). This authority was enacted by Public Law 100-589, 
the 1988 reauthorization of the ASBCA, but was not codified as 
part of that Act. This section so incorporates it, with three 
changes. First, the definition of ``Exclusive Economic Zone'' 
is moved to Section 3 (Definitions). Second, according to 
current law, regulations for striped bass fishing in the EEZ 
must be ``necessary and appropriate to ensure the effectiveness 
of State regulations or a Federal moratorium on fishing for 
Atlantic striped bass within the coastal waters of a coastal 
state.'' In H.R. 1658, this is amended to read ``compatible 
with the plan or a Federal moratorium on fishing for Atlantic 
striped bass within the coastal waters of a coastal state.'' 
The Committee's intent in making this change is to make the 
ASBCA consistent with the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries 
Cooperative Management Act, so that the Secretary of Commerce 
is not held to different standards in regulating different 
species. The Committee does not intend by this change to 
disapprove current regulations in the EEZ, or to suggest a 
change. The Committee believes that the present Federal 
moratorium in the EEZ is consistent with the prudent management 
of striped bass. Finally, the Committee adds a requirement that 
regulations in the EEZ be sufficient for the long-term 
conservation of Atlantic striped bass. Again, the Committee 
believes that the existing moratorium in the EEZ is sufficient 
to provide for the long-term conservation of Atlantic striped 
bass.

                           Section 3. Repeals

    H.R. 1658 repeals a section of the Anadromous Fish 
Conservation Act which authorizes studies of striped bass 
populations. This authority would be consolidated into Section 
6 of the ASBCA. It also repeals a provision of Public Law 100-
589, the 1988 reauthorization of the ASBCA, which authorized 
the Secretary of Commerce to regulate striped bass in the EEZ, 
and moves this language to Section 9 of the ASBCA, as discussed 
above. In addition, this section repeals the authorization of a 
one-time study which has been completed.

            Committee Oversight Findings and Recommendations

    With respect to the requirements of clause 2(l)(3) of rule 
XI of the rules of the House of Representatives, and clause 
2(b)(1) of rule X of the Rules of the House of Representatives, 
the Committee on Resources' oversight findings and 
recommendations are reflected in the body of this report.

                  Federal Advisory Committee Statement

    Although mentioned in H.R. 1658, the Atlantic States Marine 
Fisheries Commission is not authorized in this legislation. 
Rather, the Commission has been established under an interstate 
compact consented to and approved by Congress in Public Law 77-
539 and Public Law 81-721.

                   Constitutional Authority Statement

    Article I, section 8 of the Constitution of the United 
States grants Congress the authority to enact H.R. 1658.

                        Cost of the Legislation

    Clause 7(a) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives requires an estimate and a comparison by the 
Committee of the costs which would be incurred in carrying out 
H.R. 1658. However, clause 7(d) of that Rule provides that this 
requirement does not apply when the Committee has included in 
its report a timely submitted cost estimate of the bill 
prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget Office 
under section 403 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974.

                     Compliance With House Rule XI

    1. With respect to the requirement of clause 2(l)(3)(B) of 
rule XI of the Rules of the House of Representatives and 
section 308(a) of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, H.R. 
1658 does not contain any new budget authority, spending 
authority, credit authority, or an increase or decrease in tax 
expenditures. Enactment of H.R. 1658 would increase revenues to 
the Federal Government by increasing civil penalties for 
fishing in state waters during a Federally-imposed moratorium, 
but these revenues would not be significant.
    2. With respect to the requirement of clause 2(l)(3)(D) of 
rule XI of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
Committee has received no report of oversight findings and 
recommendations from the Committee on Government Reform and 
Oversight on the subject of H.R. 1658.
    3. With respect to the requirement of clause 2(l)(3)(C) of 
rule XI of the Rules of the House of Representatives and 
section 403 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the 
Committee has received the following cost estimate for H.R. 
1658 from the Director of the Congressional Budget Office.

               Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                      Washington, DC, July 7, 1997.
Hon. Don Young,
Chairman, Committee on Resources,
House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 1658, the Atlantic 
Striped Bass Conservation Act Amendments of 1997.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contacts are Gary Brown 
(for federal costs) and Marjorie Miller (for the state and 
local impact).
            Sincerely,
                                              James L. Blum
                                   (For June E. O'Neill, Director).
    Enclosure.

H.R. 1658--Atlantic Striped Bass Conservation Act Amendments of 1997

    H.R. 1658 would amend the Atlantic Striped Bass 
Conservation Act (the Striped Bass Act) to authorize 
appropriations of about $1 million annual through 2000 for the 
management and conservation of striped bass, including ongoing 
population studies. The Bill also would increase penalties for 
fishing for striped bass in state waters (zero to three miles 
offshore) during a federal moratorium.
    Assuming appropriation of the authorized amounts, CBO 
estimates that implementing the bill would increase federal 
spending by $1 million in 1998 and by about $3 million over the 
1998-2000 period. The legislation could affect governmental 
receipts by increasing a civil penalty for fishing in state 
waters during a federally imposed moratorium; therefore, pay-
as-you-go procedures would apply. However, CBO estimates that 
any new receipts would total less than $500,000 a year. The 
bill contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates 
as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (UMRA), 
and would not impose any cost on state, local, or tribal 
governments.
    Estimated cost to the Federal Government: The estimated 
budgetary impact of H.R. 1658 is shown in the following table.

                                    [By fiscal year, in millions of dollars]                                    
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                   1997       1998       1999       2000       2001       2002  
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                        SPENDING SUBJECT TO APPROPRIATION                                       
                                                                                                                
Spending under current law:                                                                                     
    Budget authority \1\......................         1          0          0          0          0          0 
    Estimated outlays.........................         1          0          0          0          0          0 
Proposed changes:                                                                                               
    Authorization level.......................         0          1          1          1          0          0 
    Estimated outlays.........................         0          1          1          1          0          0 
Spending under H.R. 1658:                                                                                       
    Authorization level \1\...................         1          1          1          1          0          0 
    Estimated outlays.........................         1          1          1          1          0          0 
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ The 1997 level is the amount appropriated for that year.                                                    

    The costs of this legislation fall within budget function 
300 (natural resources).
    Basis of estimate: For purposes of this estimate, CBO 
assumes that all amounts authorized by H.R. 1658 would be 
appropriated for each fiscal year and that outlays would follow 
historical spending patterns for the authorized programs.
    H.R. 1658 would increase from $1,000 per violation to 
$100,000 the penalty for fishing for striped bass in state 
waters when a federal moratorium is in effect. CBO expects that 
any collections from this penalty would total less than 
$500,000 a year because it is very unlikely that a federal 
moratorium would ever be imposed. (Since the authority was 
first provided in 1984, a federal moratorium on fishing for 
striped bass in state waters has been imposed only once, for a 
six-day period in 1990 in New Jersey.) The bill would maintain 
the current system of penalties for violating federal 
regulations governing fishing in federal waters.
    Pay-as-you-go considerations: Section 252 of the Balanced 
Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985 sets up pay-
as-you-go procedures for legislation affecting direct spending 
or receipts through 1998. The bill's provision increasing 
penalties for striped bass fishing in state waters during a 
moratorium could affect receipts, but CBO estimates that the 
amount of any new revenues would not be significant.
    Estimated impact on State, local, and tribal governments: 
H.R. 1658 contains no intergovernmental mandates as defined in 
UMRA and would impose no costs on state, local, or tribal 
governments.
    The bill would benefit the Atlantic State Marine Fisheries 
Commission by providing access to federal funds that the bill 
authorizes to be appropriated ($1.05 million per year for 
fiscal years 1998-2000). The commission could receive some of 
these funds under cooperative agreements with federal agencies.
    Estimated impact on the private sector: The bill would 
impose no new private-sector mandates as defined in UMRA.
    Estimate prepared by: Federal Costs: Gary Brown; impact on 
State, local, and tribal governments: Marjorie Miller.
    Estimate approved by: Robert A. Sunshine, Deputy Assistant 
Director for Budget Analysis.

                    Compliance With Public Law 104-4

    H.R. 1658 contains no unfunded mandates.

         Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported

  In compliance with clause 3 of rule XIII of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives, changes in existing law made by the 
bill, as reported, are shown as follows (existing law proposed 
to be omitted is enclosed in black brackets, new matter is 
printed in italic, existing law in which no change is proposed 
is shown in roman):

                 ATLANTIC STRIPED BASS CONSERVATION ACT

[SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

  [This Act may be cited as the ``Atlantic Striped Bass 
Conservation Act''.

[SEC. 2. FINDINGS AND PURPOSES.

  [(a) Findings.--The Congress finds and declares the 
following:
          [(1) Atlantic striped bass are of historic commercial 
        and recreational importance and economic benefit to the 
        Atlantic coastal States and to the Nation.
          [(2) As a consequence of increased fishing pressure, 
        environmental pollution, the loss and alteration of 
        habitat, and the inadequacy of fishery conservation and 
        management practices and controls, certain stocks of 
        Atlantic striped bass have been severely reduced in 
        number.
          [(3) Because no single government entity has full 
        management authority throughout the range of the 
        Atlantic striped bass, the harvesting and conservation 
        of these fish have been subject to diverse, 
        inconsistent, and intermittent State regulation that 
        has been detrimental to the long-term maintenance of 
        stocks of the species and to the interests of fishermen 
        and the Nation as a whole.
          [(4) It is in the national interest to implement 
        effective procedures and measures to provide for 
        effective interjurisdictional conservation and 
        management of this species.
  [(b) Purpose.--It is therefore declared to be the purpose of 
the Congress in this Act to support and encourage the 
development, implementation, and enforcement of effective 
interstate action regarding the conservation and management of 
the Atlantic striped bass.

[SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS.

  [As used in this Act--
          [(1) The term ``Magnuson Act'' means the Magnuson 
        Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1801 
        et seq.).
          [(2) The term ``Atlantic striped bass'' means members 
        of stocks or populations of the species Morone 
        saxatilis, which ordinarily migrate seaward of the 
        waters described in paragraph (3)(A)(i).
          [(3) The term ``coastal waters'' means--
                  [(A) for each coastal State referred to in 
                paragraph (4)(A)--
                          [(i) all waters, whether salt or 
                        fresh, of the coastal State shoreward 
                        of the baseline from which the 
                        territorial sea of the United States is 
                        measured; and
                          [(ii) the waters of the coastal State 
                        seaward from the baseline referred to 
                        in clause (i) to the inner boundary of 
                        the exclusive economic zone;
                  [(B) for the District of Columbia, those 
                waters within its jurisdiction; and
                  [(C) for the Potomac River Fisheries 
                Commission, those waters of the Potomac River 
                within the boundaries established by the 
                Potomac River Compact of 1958.
          [(4) The term ``coastal State'' means--
                  [(A) Pennsylvania and each State of the 
                United States bordering on the Atlantic Ocean 
                north of the State of South Carolina;
                  [(B) the District of Columbia; and
                  [(C) the Potomac River Fisheries Commission 
                established by the Potomac River Compact of 
                1958.
          [(5) The term ``Commission'' means the Atlantic 
        States Marine Fisheries Commission established under 
        the interstate compact consented to and approved by the 
        Congress in Public Laws 77-539 and 81-721.
          [(6) The term ``fishing'' means--
                  [(A) the catching, taking, or harvesting of 
                Atlantic striped bass, except when incidental 
                to harvesting that occurs in the course of 
                commercial or recreational fish catching 
                activities directed at a species other than 
                Atlantic striped bass;
                  [(B) the attempted catching, taking, or 
                harvesting of Atlantic striped bass; and
                  [(C) any operation at sea in support of, or 
                in preparation for, any activity described in 
                subparagraph (A) or (B).
        The term does not include any scientific research 
        authorized by the Federal Government or by any State 
        government.
          [(7) The term ``Plan'' means the Interstate Fisheries 
        Management Plan for Striped Bass, dated October 1, 
        1981, prepared by the Commission, and all amendments 
        thereto related to fishing, including interim 
        restoration measures for Chesapeake Bay striped bass 
        stocks as developed by the Atlantic States Marine 
        Fisheries Commission Striped Bass Management Board in 
        December 1983, whether or not such language is formally 
        adopted as an amendment to the Plan of October 1, 1981.
          [(8) The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary of 
        Commerce.
          [(9) The term ``Secretaries'' means the Secretary of 
        Commerce and the Secretary of the Interior.

[SEC. 4. COMMISSION FUNCTIONS.

  [(a) Monitoring of Implementation and Enforcement.--
          [(1) During December of fiscal year 1987, and of each 
        fiscal year thereafter, and at any other time it deems 
        necessary, the Commission shall determine:
                  [(A) whether each coastal State has adopted 
                all regulatory measures necessary to fully 
                implement the Plan in its coastal waters; and
                  [(B) whether the enforcement of the Plan by 
                each coastal State is satisfactory. Enforcement 
                by a coastal State shall not be considered 
                satisfactory by the Commission if, in its view, 
                the enforcement is being carried out in such a 
                manner that the implementation of the Plan 
                within its coastal waters is being, or will 
                likely be, substantially and adversely 
                affected.
          [(2) The Commission shall immediately notify the 
        Secretaries of each negative determination made by it 
        under this subsection.
  [(b) Secretarial Action After Notification.--Upon receiving 
notice from the Commission under subsection (a) that a coastal 
State has not taken the actions described in that subsection, 
the Secretaries shall determine jointly, within thirty days, 
whether that coastal State is in compliance with the Plan and, 
if the State is not in compliance, the Secretaries shall 
declare jointly a moratorium on fishing for Atlantic striped 
bass within the coastal waters of that coastal State. In making 
such a determination, the Secretaries shall carefully consider 
and review the comments of the Commission and that coastal 
State in question.

[SEC. 5. MORATORIUM.

  [(a) Definitions.--For purposes of this section--
          [(1) The term ``moratorium area'' means the coastal 
        waters with respect to which a declaration under 
        section 4(b) applies.
          [(2) The term ``moratorium period'' means the period 
        beginning on the day on which moratorium is declared 
        under section 4(b) regarding a coastal State and ending 
        on the day on which the Commission notifies the 
        Secretaries that that State has taken appropriate 
        remedial action with respect to those matters that were 
        the cause of the moratorium being declared.
  [(b) Prohibited Acts During Moratorium.--During a moratorium 
period, it is unlawful for any person--
          [(1) to engage in fishing within the moratorium area;
          [(2) to land, or attempt to land, Atlantic striped 
        bass that are caught, taken, or harvested in violation 
        of paragraph (1);
          [(3) to land lawfully harvested Atlantic striped bass 
        within the boundaries of a coastal State when a 
        moratorium declared under section 4(b) applies to that 
        State; or
          [(4) to fail to return to the water Atlantic striped 
        bass to which the moratorium applies that are caught 
        incidental to harvesting that occurs in the course of 
        commercial or recreational fish catching activities, 
        regardless of the physical condition of the striped 
        bass when caught.
  [(c) Penalties and Forfeitures.--(1) Any person who is found 
by the Secretaries, after notice and an opportunity for a 
hearing in accordance with section 554 of title 5, United 
States Code, to have committed an act that is unlawful under 
subsection (b), shall be liable to the United States for a 
civil penalty. The amount of the civil penalty shall not exceed 
$1,000 for each violation. Each day of continuing violation 
shall constitute a separate offense. The amount of such civil 
penalty shall be assessed by the Secretaries by written notice. 
In determining the amount of such penalty, the Secretaries 
shall take into account the nature, circumstances, extent, and 
gravity of the prohibited act committed and, with respect to 
the violator, the degree of culpability, any history of prior 
violations, ability to pay, and such other matters as justice 
may require.
  [(2) Subsections (b) through (e) of section 308 of the 
Magnuson Act (16 U.S.C. 1858 (b)-(e); relating to review of 
civil penalties, action upon failure to pay assessment, 
compromise, and subpenas) shall apply to penalties assessed 
under paragraph (1) to the same extent and in the same manner 
as if those penalties were assessed under subsection (a) of 
such section 308.
  [(d) Civil Forfeitures.--(1) Any vessel (including its gear, 
equipment, appurtenances, stores, and cargo) used, and any fish 
(or the fair market value thereof) taken or retained, in any 
manner, in connection with, or the result of, the commission of 
any act that is unlawful under subsection (b), shall be subject 
to forfeiture to the United States. All or part of the vessel 
may, and all such fish (or the fair market value thereof) 
shall, be forfeited to the United States under a civil 
proceeding described in paragraph (2). The district courts of 
the United States have jurisdiction over proceedings under this 
subsection.
  [(2) Subsections (c) through (e) of section 310 of the 
Magnuson Act (16 U.S.C. 1806 (c)-(e); relating to judgment, 
procedure, and rebuttable presumptions) apply with respect to 
proceedings for forfeiture commenced under this subsection to 
the same extent and in the same manner as if the proceeding 
were commenced under subsection (a) of such section 310.
  [(e) Enforcement.--(1) The Secretaries shall enforce a 
moratorium declared under section 4(b). The Secretaries may, by 
agreement, on a reimbursable basis or otherwise, utilize the 
personnel, services, equipment (including aircraft and 
vessels), and facilities of any other Federal department or 
agency and of any agency of a coastal State in carrying out 
that enforcement.
          [(2) Enforcement authority.--A person authorized by 
        the Secretaries may take any action to enforce a 
        moratorium declared under section 4(b) that an officer 
        authorized by the Secretary under section 311(b) of the 
        Magnuson Fishery Conservation and Management Act may 
        take to enforce that Act.
          [(3) Regulations.--The Secretaries may issue 
        regulations to implement this subsection.

[SEC. 6. COMPREHENSIVE ANNUAL SURVEYS.

  [For the purposes of implementing the provisions of this Act, 
the Secretary and the Secretary of the Interior shall jointly 
conduct a comprehensive annual survey of the Atlantic striped 
bass fisheries. Each survey shall include, but not be limited 
to, a compilation and assessment of the recreational and 
commercial landings of that species in the coastal States 
during the period considered in the survey. The results of each 
annual survey shall be published in the Federal Register.

[SEC. 7. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS; COOPERATIVE AGREEMENTS.

  [(a) Authorization.--For each fiscal years 1986, 1987, 1988, 
1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, and 1994, there are authorized to 
be appropriated such sums as may be necessary or appropriate to 
carry out this Act.
  [(b) Cooperative Agreements.--The Secretaries may enter into 
cooperative agreements with the Atlantic States Marine 
Fisheries Commission for the purpose of using amounts 
appropriated pursuant to this section to provide financial 
assistance to the Commission for carrying out its functions 
under this Act.

[SEC. 8. SECRETARIAL STUDY.

  [Within six months of the date of enactment of this Act, the 
Secretaries shall review the existing Plan and shall report to 
the Commission, the Chairman of the House Committee on Merchant 
Marine and Fisheries, the Chairman of the Senate Committee on 
Commerce, Science and Transportation and the Chairman of the 
Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works on the 
adequacy of the Plan to achieve the purposes of this Act. Such 
report shall include recommendations for additional measures 
that may need to be taken and include recommendations 
concerning specific State actions regarding the management and 
conservation of striped bass.]

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

  This Act may be cited as the ``Atlantic Striped Bass 
Conservation Act''.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS AND PURPOSES.

  (a) Findings.--The Congress finds and declares the following:
          (1) Atlantic striped bass are of historic commercial 
        and recreational importance and economic benefit to the 
        Atlantic coastal States and to the Nation.
          (2) No single government entity has full management 
        authority throughout the range of the Atlantic striped 
        bass.
          (3) The population of Atlantic striped bass--
                  (A) has been subject to large fluctuations 
                due to natural causes, fishing pressure, 
                environmental pollution, loss and alteration of 
                habitat, inadequacy of fisheries conservation 
                and management practices, and other causes; and
                  (B) risks potential depletion in the future 
                without effective monitoring and conservation 
                and management measures.
          (4) It is in the national interest to implement 
        effective procedures and measures to provide for 
        effective interjurisdictional conservation and 
        management of this species.
  (b) Purpose.--It is therefore declared to be the purpose of 
the Congress in this Act to support and encourage the 
development, implementation, and enforcement of effective 
interstate action regarding the conservation and management of 
the Atlantic striped bass.

SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS.

  As used in this Act--
          (1) the term ``Magnuson Act'' means the Magnuson-
        Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 
        U.S.C. 1801 et seq.).
          (2) The term ``Atlantic striped bass'' means members 
        of stocks or populations of the species Morone 
        saxatilis, which ordinarily migrate seaward of the 
        waters described in paragraph (3)(A)(i).
          (3) The term ``coastal waters'' means--
                  (A) for each coastal State referred to in 
                paragraph (4)(A)--
                          (i) all waters, whether salt or 
                        fresh, of the coastal State shoreward 
                        of the baseline from which the 
                        territorial sea of the United States is 
                        measured; and
                          (ii) the waters of the coastal State 
                        seaward from the baseline referred to 
                        in clause (i) to the inner boundary of 
                        the exclusive economic zone;
                  (B) for the District of Columbia, those 
                waters within its jurisdiction; and
                  (C) for the Potomac River Fisheries 
                Commission, those waters of the Potomac River 
                within the boundaries established by the 
                Potomac River Compact of 1958.
          (4) The term ``coastal State'' means--
                  (A) Pennsylvania and each State of the United 
                States bordering on the Atlantic Ocean north of 
                the State of South Carolina;
                  (B) the District of Columbia; and
                  (C) the Potomac River Fisheries Commission 
                established by the Potomac River Compact of 
                1958.
          (5) The term ``Commission'' means the Atlantic States 
        Marine Fisheries Commission established under the 
        interstate compact consented to and approved by the 
        Congress in Public Laws 77-539 and 81-721.

SEC. 5. MORATORIUM.

  (a) Secretarial Action After Notification.--Upon receiving 
notice from the Commission under section 4(c) of a negative 
determination regarding a coastal State, the Secretaries shall 
determine jointly, within thirty days, whether that coastal 
State is in compliance with the Plan and, if the State is not 
in compliance, the Secretaries shall declare jointly a 
moratorium on fishing for Atlantic striped bass within the 
coastal waters of that coastal State. In making such a 
determination, the Secretaries shall carefully consider and 
review the comments of the Commission and that coastal State in 
question.
  (b) Prohibited Acts During Moratorium.--During a moratorium 
period, it is unlawful for any person--
          (1) to engage in fishing within the moratorium area;
          (2) to land, or attempt to land, Atlantic striped 
        bass that are caught, taken, or harvested in violation 
        of paragraph (1);
          (3) to land lawfully harvested Atlantic striped bass 
        within the boundaries of a coastal State when a 
        moratorium declared under subsection (a) applies to 
        that State; or
          (4) to fail to return to the water Atlantic striped 
        bass to which the moratorium applies that are caught 
        incidental to harvesting that occurs in the course of 
        commercial or recreational fish catching activities, 
        regardless of the physical condition of the striped 
        bass when caught.
  (c) Civil Penalties.--
          (1) Civil penalty.--Any person who commits any act 
        that is unlawful under subsection (b) shall be liable 
        to the United States for a civil penalty as provided by 
        section 308 of the Magnuson Act (16 U.S.C. 1858).
          (2) Civil forfeitures.--
                  (A) In general.--Any vessel (including its 
                gear, equipment, appurtenances, stores, and 
                cargo) used, and any fish (or the fair market 
                value thereof) taken or retained, in any 
                manner, in connection with, or as the result 
                of, the commission of any act that is unlawful 
                under subsection (b) shall be subject to 
                forfeiture to the United States as provided in 
                section 310 of the Magnuson Act (16 U.S.C. 
                1860).
                  (B) Disposal of fish.--Any fish seized 
                pursuant to this Act may be disposed of 
                pursuant to the order of a court of competent 
                jurisdiction, or, if perishable, in a manner 
                prescribed in regulations.
  (d) Enforcement.--A person authorized by the Secretary or the 
Secretary of the department in which the Coast Guard is 
operating may take any action to enforce a moratorium declared 
under subsection (a) that an officer authorized by the 
Secretary under section 311(b) of the Magnuson Act (16 U.S.C. 
1861(b)) may take to enforce that Act (16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.). 
The Secretary may, by agreement, on a reimbursable basis or 
otherwise, utilize the personnel, services, equipment 
(including aircraft and vessels), and facilities of any other 
Federal department or agency and of any agency of a State in 
carrying out that enforcement.
  (e) Regulations.--The Secretary may issue regulations to 
implement this section.

SEC. 6. CONTINUING STUDIES OF STRIPED BASS POPULATIONS.

  (a) In General.--For the purposes of carrying out this Act, 
the Secretaries shall conduct continuing, comprehensive studies 
of Atlantic striped bass stocks. These studies shall include, 
but shall not be limited to, the following:
          (1) Annual stock assessments, using fishery-dependent 
        and fishery-independent data, for the purposes of 
        extending the long-term population record generated by 
        the annual striped bass study conducted by the 
        Secretaries before 1994 and understanding the 
        population dynamics of Atlantic striped bass.
          (2) Investigations of the causes of fluctuations in 
        Atlantic striped bass populations.
          (3) Investigations of the effects of water quality, 
        land use, and other environmental factors on the 
        recruitment, spawning potential, mortality, and 
        abundance of Atlantic striped bass populations, 
        including the Delaware River population.
          (4) Investigations of--
                  (A) the interactions between Atlantic striped 
                bass and other fish, including bluefish, 
                menhaden, mackerel, and other forage fish or 
                possible competitors, stock assessments of 
                these species, to the extent appropriate; and
                  (B) the effects of interspecies predation and 
                competition on the recruitment, spawning 
                potential mortality, and abundance of Atlantic 
                striped bass.
  (b) Reports.--The Secretaries shall make biennial reports to 
the Congress and to the Commission concerning the progress and 
findings of studies conducted under subsection (a) and shall 
make those reports public. Such reports shall, to the extent 
appropriate, contain recommendations of actions which could be 
taken to encourage the sustainable management of Atlantic 
striped bass.

SEC. 7. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS; COOPERATIVE AGREEMENTS.

  (a) Authorization.--For each of fiscal years 1998, 1999, and 
2000, there are authorized to be appropriated to carry out this 
Act--
          (1) $800,000 to the Secretary of Commerce; and
          (2) $250,000 to the Secretary of the Interior.
  (b) Cooperative Agreements.--The Secretaries may enter into 
cooperative agreements with the Atlantic States Marine 
Fisheries Commission or with States, for the purpose of using 
amounts appropriated pursuant to this section to provide 
financial assistance for carrying out the purposes of this Act.

SEC. 8. PUBLIC PARTICIPATION IN PREPARATION OF MANAGEMENT PLANS AND 
                    AMENDMENTS.

  (a) Standards and Procedures.--In order to ensure the 
opportunity for public participation in the preparation of 
management plans and amendments to management plans for 
Atlantic striped bass, the Commission shall prepare such plans 
and amendments in accordance withthe standards and procedures 
established under section 805(a)(2) of the Atlantic Coastal Fisheries 
Cooperative Management Act.
  (b) Application.--Subsection (a) shall apply to management 
plans and amendments adopted by the Commission after the 6-
month period beginning on the date of enactment of the Atlantic 
Striped Bass Conservation Act Amendments of 1997.

SEC. 9. PROTECTION OF STRIPED BASS IN THE EXCLUSIVE ECONOMIC ZONE.

  (a) Regulation of Fishing in Exclusive Economic Zone.--The 
Secretary shall promulgate regulations governing fishing for 
Atlantic striped bass in the exclusive economic zone that the 
Secretary determines are--
          (1) consistent with the national standards set forth 
        in section 301 of the Magnuson Act (16 U.S.C. 1851);
          (2) compatible with the Plan and each Federal 
        moratorium in effect on fishing for Atlantic striped 
        bass within the coastal waters of a coastal State; and
          (3) sufficient to assure the long-term conservation 
        of Atlantic striped bass populations.
  (b) Consultation; Periodic Review of Regulations.--In 
preparing regulations under subsection (a), the Secretary shall 
consult with the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, 
the appropriate Regional Fishery Management Councils, and each 
affected Federal, State, and local government entity. The 
Secretary shall periodically review regulations promulgated 
under subsection (a), and if necessary to ensure their 
continued consistency with the requirements of subsection (a), 
shall amend those regulations.
  (c) Applicability of Magnuson Act Provisions.--The provisions 
of sections 307, 308, 309, 310, and 311 of the Magnuson Act (16 
U.S.C. 1857, 1858, 1859, 1860, and 1861) regarding prohibited 
acts, civil penalties, criminal offenses, civil forfeitures, 
and enforcement shall apply with respect to regulations and any 
plan issued under subsection (a) of this section as if such 
regulations or plan were issued under the Magnuson Act.
          * * * * * * *
                              ----------                              


           SECTION 7 OF THE ANADROMOUS FISH CONSERVATION ACT

  [Sec. 7. (a) Conduct and Scope of Studies.--The Secretary 
shall cooperate with States and other non-Federal interests in 
conducting scientific studies of the anadromous stocks of 
Atlantic striped bass. These studies shall include, but not be 
limited to--
          [(1) estimates of recruitment, spawning potential, 
        mortality rates, stock composition of coastal 
        fisheries, and other population parameters;
          [(2) investigations of factors affecting abundance of 
        striped bass, including analyses of the extent and 
        causes of mortality at successive life stages; and
          [(3) monitoring population abundance and age and sex 
        composition of striped bass stocks on fishery-dependent 
        and fishery-independent data.
  [(b) The Secretary shall make annual reports to the Congress 
concerning the progress and findings of the studies conducted 
pursuant to subsection (a) of this section. Such reports shall, 
where appropriate, contain recommendations of actions which 
could be taken to improve the population of striped bass.
  [(c) For purposes of conducting the studies required by this 
section, the Secretary may enter into agreements with States 
and other non-Federal interests in accordance with the 
provisions of the first section of this Act or he may carry out 
such studies directly, as he deems appropriate: Provided, That 
any agreement entered into pursuant to this subsection shall be 
effective only to such extent or in such amounts as are 
provided in advance in appropriation Acts.
  [(d) There are authorized to be appropriated for the purposes 
of carrying out the studies described in subsection (a) of this 
section not to exceed $1,000,000 for each of the fiscal years 
1991, 1992, 1993, and 1994. Funds authorized to be appropriated 
by this subsection are in addition to any funds authorized by 
section 4 which may be used for projects involving or affecting 
striped bass.]
                              ----------                              


                      THE ACT OF NOVEMBER 3, 1988

 AN ACT To authorize appropriations to carry out the Atlantic Striped 
Bass Conservation Act for fiscal years 1989 through 1991, and for other 
                               purposes.

          * * * * * * *

[SEC. 5. STUDY OF STRIPED BASS IN ALBEMARLE SOUND AND ROANOKE RIVER 
                    BASIN.

  [(a) Findings.--The Congress finds that:
          [(1) The anadromous stock of striped bass in the 
        Albemarle Sound-Roanoke River Basin area of North 
        Carolina sustained important commercial and 
        recreational fisheries as recently as the 1960's and 
        1970's.
          [(2) This stock has been declining for some time and 
        is severely depressed at present, and may soon reach a 
        level from which recovery will be exceptionally 
        difficult.
          [(3) The reasons for this decline are thought to 
        include fishing; other human activities and 
        environmental factors, such as unsuitable water flow 
        before, during, and after critical spawning periods; 
        degradation of water quality by pollutants; the impact 
        of eutrophication on the food chain, and the impact of 
        changing land use activities.
          [(4) Current Federal and interstate efforts to 
        conserve the Atlantic striped bass, while effective in 
        identifying factors contributing to the decline of 
        other important Atlantic coastal migratory stocks of 
        striped bass and steps that will be effective in 
        reversing that decline, have not made a major 
        contribution to the protection and restoration of the 
        Albemarle Sound-Roanoke River stock of striped bass.
          [(5) Because the striped bass and the aquatic 
        environment of the Albemarle Sound-Roanoke River basin 
        presently are being significantly affected by combined 
        but not fully understood causes, a study should be 
        undertaken to obtain additional biological information 
        to understand the significance of fishing, water flows, 
        and other factors in the decline of the striped bass 
        populations in the Albemarle Sound-Roanoke River basin 
        and, if feasible, develop an effective course of action 
        for restoring these important stocks of striped bass.
  [(b) Study.--
          [(1) In general.--The Director of the United States 
        Fish and Wildlife Service, in consultation with the 
        Assistant Administrator for Fisheries of the National 
        Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shall--
                  [(A) immediately undertake a biological study 
                of the striped bass fishery resources and 
                habitats of the Albemarle Sound-Roanoke River 
                basin area;
                  [(B) develop short-term and long-term 
                recommendations for Federal and State 
                government agencies for restoring and 
                conserving such resources and habitats; and
                  [(C) submit the results of such study and 
                such recommendations to the Congress and to the 
                States of North Carolina and Virginia as soon 
                as practicable, but not later than 36 months 
                after the date of the enactment of this Act.
          [(2) Contents of the study.--The study conducted 
        under this subsection shall, to the extent existing 
        data are adequate, use such existing data and shall 
        include--
                  [(A) a description of the Albemarle Sound-
                Roanoke River basin area, and an investigation 
                and analysis of the effects of land and water 
                use practices on the striped bass population 
                and habitats of the area;
                  [(B) an investigation and analysis of the 
                abundance and age and geographic distribution 
                of the Albemarle Sound-Roanoke River stock of 
                striped bass, including the amount and 
                geographical location of migration and spawning 
                habitat;
                  [(C) an investigation and analysis of factors 
                that may affect the abundance and age and 
                geographic distribution of the Albemarle Sound-
                Roanoke River stock of striped bass, 
                including--
                          [(i) the extent and causes of 
                        mortality at successive stages in the 
                        life cycle of striped bass, including 
                        mortality due to recreational and 
                        commercial fishing; and
                          [(ii) the combined effects of 
                        pollution and other natural and human 
                        alterations of the physical 
                        environment, including the effects of 
                        water withdrawals, discharges, and 
                        flows, on striped bass migration and 
                        spawning and on the viability and 
                        condition of eggs and larval fish;
                  [(D) an investigation and analysis of the 
                status and effectiveness of current striped 
                bass management measures implemented by State 
                and Federal authorities, including State 
                fishing regulations and Federal fish stocking 
                activities, reservoir management and water flow 
                regulation, and an analysis of whether any 
                additional State or Federal measures would be 
                effective in halting the decline and initiating 
                the recovery of the Albemarle Sound-Roanoke 
                River stock of striped bass; and
                  [(E) a recommendation of whether conservation 
                of the Albermarle Sound-Roanoke River stocks of 
                striped bass could be improved by management of 
                these stocks under the provisions of the 
                Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission's 
                Interstate Fisheries Management Plan for 
                Striped Bass and the Atlantic Striped Bass 
                Conservation Act.
  [(c) Participation by State Agencies.--
          [(1) The Director of the North Carolina Division of 
        Marine Fisheries, the Executive Director of the North 
        Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission, the Secretary 
        of the Virginia Department of Natural Resources, and 
        the District Engineer for the Wilmington District of 
        the United States Army Corps of Engineers shall be 
        invited to have their agencies participate in 
        conducting the study and developing recommendations 
        pursuant to subsection (b).
          [(2) To facilitate participation by the agencies 
        referred to in paragraph (1), should they decide to 
        participate, a Memorandum of Understanding will be 
        executed with such officials setting forth the 
        respective responsibilities of the entities involved in 
        conducting the study and developing those 
        recommendations.
  [(d) Consultation.--In carrying out the study under 
subsection (b), the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries 
Commission, other Federal agencies, the Albermarle-Pamlico 
Estuarine Study, Dominion Resources, Inc./Virginia Power/North 
Carolina Power, affected local governments in North Carolina 
and Virginia, appropriate commercial and recreational fishing 
interests, and other interests shall be consulted, to the 
maximum extent practicable.
  [(e) Authorization of Appropriations.--There is authorized to 
be appropriated the sum of $1,000,000 to carry out the 
requirements of this section. These appropriations will remain 
available until expended.
  [(f) State Authority.--Nothing in this section shall be 
construed as authorizing any State to manage fisheries within 
the jurisdiction of another State.
  [(g) Restriction on Use of Other Funds.--Amounts appropriated 
pursuant to the authorization contained in section 7(d) of the 
Anadromous Fish Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 757g(d)) shall not 
be used to carry out this section.

[SEC. 6. PROTECTION OF STRIPED BASS IN THE EXCLUSIVE ECONOMIC ZONE.

  [(a) Regulation of Fishing in Exclusive Economic Zone.--The 
Secretary of Commerce shall promulgate regulations governing 
the fishing for Atlantic striped bass in the exclusive economic 
zone that the Secretary determines to be consistent with the 
national standards set forth in section 301 of the Magnuson 
Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1851) and 
necessary and appropriate to--
          [(1) ensure the effectiveness of State regulations or 
        a Federal moratorium on fishing for Atlantic striped 
        bass within the coastal waters of a coastal State; and
          [(2) achieve conservation and management goals for 
        the Atlantic striped bass resource.
  [(b) Consultation; Periodic Review of Regulations.--In 
preparing regulations under subsection (a), the Secretary shall 
consult with the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, 
the appropriate Regional Fishery Management Councils, and each 
affected Federal, State, and local government entity. The 
Secretary shall periodically review regulations promulgated 
under subsection (a), and if necessary to ensure their 
continued consistency with the requirements of subsection (a), 
shall amend those regulations.
  [(d) Applicability of Magnuson Act Provisions.--The 
provisions of sections 307, 308, 309, 310, and 311 of the 
Magnuson Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 
1857, 1858, 1859, 1860, and 1861) regarding prohibited acts, 
civil penalties, criminal offenses, civil forfeitures, and 
enforcement shall apply with respect to regulations and any 
plan issued under subsection (a) of this section as if such 
regulations or plan were issued under the Magnuson Fishery 
Conservation and Management Act.
  [(e) Definition.--As used in this section, the term 
``exclusive economic zone'' has the meaning given such term in 
section 3(6) of the Magnuson Fishery Conservation and 
Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1802(6)).
  [(g) Conforming Amendments.--
          [(1) Paragraph (1) of section 3 of the Atlantic 
        Striped Bass Conservation Act (16 U.S.C. 1851 note) is 
        amended to read as follows:
          [``(1) The term `Magnuson Act' means the Magnuson 
        Fishery Conservation and Management Act (16 U.S.C. 1801 
        et seq.).''.
          [(2) Section 5 of such Act is amended by striking 
        ``Act of 1976'' each place it appears and inserting in 
        lieu thereof ``Magnuson Act''.]