Congressman Lee Zeldin Teams Up With Senator Chuck Schumer to Advance the “Fluke Fairness Bill” (HR 1888)
Washington, DC – On Friday, April 24, Congressman Lee Zeldin (R – Shirley) and Senator Chuck Schumer (D – NY) jointly announced that they re-introduced the “Fluke Fairness Bill,” which will reform the current system that governs fluke regulation by creating a regional approach that updates quotas and standards based on sound geographic, scientific and economic data.
The current system of federal regulations for fluke fishing has created a complicated patchwork of quotas and rules for each state in the region. Last year, the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission enacted a reform permitting New York anglers to keep five fluke of 18 inches or above during the 128-day season that starts early May. Before that most recent change, New York anglers could only keep four fluke of 19 inches or above, while New Jersey and Connecticut anglers in shared waters, such as Raritan Bay and the Long Island Sound, could keep five fish at 17.5 inches; a confusing and unnecessary burden on anglers in the tristate area. Without federal legislation, this issue will continue to arise year after year. The Fluke Fairness Bill provides a permanent solution to this lingering issue.
Congressman Zeldin said, “Recreational and commercial fishing is one of the many great things about life, industry and culture here on Long Island and fluke is the most popular fish for recreational anglers in the New York area. I am proud to reintroduce this legislation in the House of Representatives. I look forward to working closely on this with Senator Schumer who has already been the leading force in the Senate."
“Unfair catch quotas are a left hook to so many Long Island anglers and that’s why it is crucial to pass the ‘Fluke Fairness Act,’ which will benefit anglers who have long been restricted by unfair regulations dictated by outdated data,” said Senator Schumer. “The act will require federal regulators to design a fair fishery management plan based on the most up-to-date research. Using science and common sense, this legislation will permanently tackle the fluke problem that puts New York anglers at a serious disadvantage, and will level the playing field for anglers up and down the East Coast.”