Brown Introduces Pair of Bills to Protect, Restore Recreational Fisheries So Ohio Tourism Industry Can Thrive

Ohio Fisheries Critical to Local Tourism Jobs, Economy

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) introduced a pair of bills to protect and restore Ohio fisheries, which support Ohio’s tourism industry and local jobs.

“A healthy, clean Lake Erie is essential to Ohio’s multi-billion dollar tourism and recreation industry,” said Brown. “Our anglers and visitors to our state know how important it is to protect and restore streams and rivers across the Great Lakes. I’ll keep working to protect Lake Erie and its tributaries so Ohioans can continue to fish and enjoy it for generations to come.”

The Great Lakes Aquatic Connectivity and Infrastructure Program Act would support infrastructure updates that will improve Great Lakes fisheries and restore habitats. The bill would provide grants to repair or replace aging dams, culverts and roads that inhibit the movement of fish populations across the Great Lakes Basin. The bill creates a grant program under which a group of appointed state and tribal representatives review proposals for infrastructure projects to help improve fisheries. 

The Great Lakes Mass Marking Program Act would help better monitor the health of fish populations in the Great Lakes through better scientific tracking technology. This will help U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in partnership with the Ohio Department of Natural Resources make decisions to support and rehabilitate sport fish populations in the basin. This program was initiated in the Great Lakes on a limited scale in 2010, and would be fully established in statute under this legislation.

Brown introduced the bills with his colleagues along the Great Lakes, including U.S. Sens. Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters from Michigan.