The U.S. House of Representatives has introduced a bill to protect fishing access and give anglers a voice in the regulatory process. Representative Collin Peterson (D-MN) introduced H.R. 3547, the Freedom to Fish Act, which would ensure that federal regulations promote access for recreational fishing and that anglers will be involved in procedures that contemplate restricting access to federally controlled waters. The bill would also ensure that when fishing restrictions are imposed on these waters, the restricted areas be as small as possible. In the autumn of 2000, the U.S. Senate introduced a similar bill. Senate Bill 3234 was introduced by Senator John Breaux (D-LA) to protect the public's ability to fish for sport and for other purposes. That bill was referred to the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, but did not advance. To read the full text of the bill, visit the Legislative Information website at http://thomas.loc.gov and do a search for H.R. 3457. To contact your congressional delegation, visit http://webcenter.governmentguide.com and enter your Zip Code. Call, write and e-mail your congressional representatives with your feelings about the Freedom to Fish Act.
September 21, 2007