June 26, 2019

Moulton-Wyden Bill Would Expand Disaster Relief to Fisheries Hurt by the Trade War

WASHINGTON -- Today, Representative Seth Moulton (D-MA) and Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) introduced legislation to expand disaster relief to fisheries harmed by the President’s tariffs.

Currently, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA) guidelines used to identify the causes of fishery disasters do not explicitly include tariffs. Moulton’s bill would amend the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Act to require NOAA to evaluate the impacts of duties imposed on American seafood. The new evaluation means that the Department of Commerce will consider the economic consequences of the trade war and be able to provide disaster relief to affected fisheries.

“Good trade policy, when it comes to seafood, gets more of the fish we catch into markets and on tables around the world. Instead, the president’s trade war is robbing American fishermen of their paychecks and making our grocery store runs more expensive,” Moulton said. “The president's lack of strategy and the uncertainty in our local economy is the perfect storm for local fishermen who are already doing more with less. Until the president ends his misguided trade war, Congress should step up and provide some relief.”

“American businesses are being hit hard by retaliatory tariffs from Trump’s ill-conceived trade agenda. Fisheries unfortunately are no exception,” Wyden said. “West Coast seafood is sought after internationally, and Oregonians earning a living in fisheries should be able to command top dollar on the global market, rather than be ensnared in the cross-fire of Trump’s escalating trade war.”

Representatives Bill Keating and Chellie Pingree joined Moulton as cosponsors of the House bill.