Network Supports House Working Waterfronts Bill

Legislation Would Promote Infrastructure Improvements, Ocean Access, and Inclusive Participation

Arlington, VA – Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-ME) and Rep. Rob Wittman (R-VA) reintroduced the “Keep America’s Waterfronts Working Act.” The bill will establish a Working Waterfront Grant Program to help preserve and expand access to coastal waters for water-dependent businesses, create a Working Waterfronts Preservation Loan Fund to make funds available through state governments for working waterfront improvement projects, and establish a Working Waterfront Task Force at the Department of Commerce to identify and prioritize critical needs for working waterfronts and to address the impacts of climate change.

Robert C. Vandermark, executive director of the Marine Fish Conservation Network, released the following statement: 

“Representatives Pingree’s and Wittman’s legislation addresses the needs of our nation’s vulnerable working waterfronts and coastal fishing communities while supporting our blue economy nationwide. Through a grant program and a land preservation fund, the Keep America’s Waterfronts Working Act provides necessary resources up to $50 million for restoring and maintaining waterfront infrastructure and ensuring waterfront access for commercial businesses, recreation, and tourism. This bill also takes steps to ensure participation from Indigenous peoples recognizing traditional uses of coastal and ocean resources. The Keep America’s Waterfronts Working Act would provide significant benefits to coastal communities, local jobs, and regional economies by supporting the people who depend on ocean access for their livelihoods. The Marine Fish Conservation Network thanks both Reps. Pingree and Wittman and looks forward to working with them to help this bill become law.”

About The Marine Fish Conservation Network

The Marine Fish Conservation Network is a coalition of commercial and recreational fishing associations, regional and national conservation groups, aquaria, sustainable seafood suppliers, and marine science organizations committed to sustaining fish populations, healthy marine ecosystems, and robust fishing communities. For more information, visit us at conservefish.org or follow us on Facebook or Twitter/X (@marinefishcons).

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