Editor's note: The following is a press release from the office of Rep. Betty McCollum.
Representatives Betty McCollum (D-MN) and Mike Kelly (R-PA) introduced the bipartisan Strategic Response to Asian Carp Invasion Act (H.R. 358). Five Members of Congress from Minnesota – Representatives Michele Bachmann (MN-06), Rick Nolan (MN-08), Erik Paulsen (MN-03), Collin Peterson (MN-07), and Tim Walz (MN-01) – also support H.R. 358. This bill helps state and local governments effectively reduce the spread of Asian carp in the United States.
Senators Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Republican Pat Toomey (R-PA) introduced counterpart legislation in the Senate.
“The growing spread of Asian Carp demands a coordinated, holistic response from the private sector, nonprofit organizations as well as federal, state, and local governments,” said Congresswoman McCollum. “The Strategic Response to Asian Carp Invasion Act incorporates efforts from all participants so we can better protect our nation’s watersheds from this invasive species.”
“The threat of Asian Carp to Western Pennsylvania’s waterways is significant and would have devastating effects on our economy and environment. We must act today to address the threats of tomorrow through an aggressive and collaborative strategy that involves the most effective and time-tested means to slow the spread and ultimately eradicate the Asian Carp,” said Congressman Kelly.
“The spread of Asian carp is a real threat to our state. The Great Lakes region and the Ohio River basin are economic drivers shoring up Ohio’s multi-million dollar fishing and recreation industries,” Brown said. “While we focus on keeping the carp out of the Great Lakes in the Chicago region, we must also protect other pathways into the lakes. This bill will do just that,” said Senator Brown.
H.R. 358 addresses the Asian Carp problem by placing the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in charge of coordinating a new federal multi-agency effort that includes the National Park Service, U.S. Geological Survey, and Army Corps of Engineers. Agencies will provide high-level technical assistance to support state and local governments that are working to protect economies and ecosystems in the Upper Mississippi and Ohio River basins from Asian carp.