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Sportfishing Leaders Go To Washington

American Sportfishing Association
Last week, members of the American Sportfishing Associationís Government Affairs committee traveled to Washington, D.C. for the annual spring government affairs meeting. The meeting provided sportfishing industry leaders with a chance to engage with Congress and federal agency leaders about policy issues affecting natural resources and the industry.

During the committee sessions, some of the issues discussed included legislative priorities such as the Recovering Americaís Wildlife Act (RAWA), federal excise tax issues, import duty relief and conservation initiatives around the country.

Additionally, ASA members traveled to Capitol Hill to meet with a bipartisan group of members of Congress that serve on committees overseeing fisheries and natural resources. In total, the committee held briefings with five members of Congress: Representatives Debbie Dingell (D-Mich.), Bruce Westerman (R-Ark.), Jared Huffman (D-Calif.), Garrett Graves (R-La.) and Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.).

ASA and the Congressional Sportsmenís Foundation co-hosted an evening reception, attended by approximately 150 individuals including Members of Congress, Congressional staff, partner organizations and sportfishing industry leaders.

"After two years of being unable to meet in person in D.C., it was great to reconvene and share our message with members of Congress and federal agency officials," said Mike Leonard, ASAís Vice President of Government Affairs. "We had a productive two days in Washington and were able to advance our priorities while advocating on behalf of sportfishing before federal officials. Our committee is made up of leaders across the sportfishing industry, and we were able to ensure that we are heard on Capitol Hill. I would also like to thank Representatives Dingell, Huffman, Graves, Westerman and Senator Heinrich for their participation."

Beyond government affairs issues, the committee discussed ASAís communications efforts and new angler retention initiatives. We look forward to working with our members on both.

The ASA Government Affairs Committee is comprised of 35 individuals, representing a wide array of industry members from across the country. The committee meets twice a year to discuss key legislative and regulatory issues affecting the industry and to guide ASA's positions and activities regarding these issues.