The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) is currently paying for efforts to mitigate the effects of water development projects on native and non-native fish stocks created by agencies outside of the Service, putting its own fisheries program at a disadvantage. Agencies such as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Bureau of Reclamation and the Tennessee Valley Authority receive fish for their mitigation projects from federal hatcheries funded by the Service. The Service has not been receiving compensation in return for the costs of operating these hatcheries.
To ensure that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is reimbursed for supporting the mitigation efforts of other agencies.
Representative Nathan Deal (R-GA 10th) introduced a bill (H.R. 537) in 2005 that directed agencies with fishery mitigation activities on mandated federal water projects to reimburse the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for the cost of operating the hatcheries used in mitigation.
ASA fully supports Representative Deal’s legislation.