Any registration recommended under this section shall not be considered a permit for the purposes of this chapter, and the Secretary may not propose to revoke, suspend, deny, or impose any other conditions or restrictions on any such registration or the use of such registration under this chapter.
The Secretary shall exempt from registration under the program recreational fishermen and charter fishing vessels licensed, permitted, or registered under the laws of a State if the Secretary determines that information from the State program is suitable for the Secretary’s use or is used to assist in completing marine recreational fisheries statistical surveys, or evaluating the effects of proposed conservation and management measures for marine recreational fisheries.
Within 24 months after January 12, 2007, the Secretary, in consultation with representatives of the recreational fishing industry and experts in statistics, technology, and other appropriate fields, shall establish a program to improve the quality and accuracy of information generated by the Marine Recreational Fishery Statistics Survey, with a goal of achieving acceptable accuracy and utility for each individual fishery.
Any funds awarded through such grants shall be used to support data collection, quality assurance, and outreach to entities submitting such data. The Secretary shall prioritize such grants based on the ability of the grant to improve the quality and accuracy of such programs.
Within 24 months after establishment of the program, the Secretary shall submit a report to Congress that describes the progress made toward achieving the goals and objectives of the program.