16 U.S. Code § 941 - Findings
FindingsThe Congress finds and declares the following:
As the human population of the Great Lakes Basin has expanded to over 35,000,000 people, great demands have been placed on the lakes for use for boating and other recreation, navigation, municipal and industrial water supply, waste disposal, power production, and other purposes. These growing and often conflicting demands exert pressure on the fish and wildlife resources of the Great Lakes Basin, including in the form of contaminants, invasion by nonindigenous species, habitat degradation and destruction, legal and illegal fishery resource harvest levels, and sea lamprey predation.
The fishery resources of the Great Lakes support recreational fisheries enjoyed by more than 5,000,000 people annually and commercial fisheries providing approximately 9,000 jobs. Together, these fisheries generate economic activity worth more than $4,400,000,000 annually to the United States.
The availability of a suitable forage base is essential to lake trout, walleye, yellow perch, and other recreational and commercially valuable fishery resources of the Great Lakes Basin. Protecting and restoring productive fish habitat, including by protecting water quality, is essential to the successful recovery of Great Lakes Basin fishery resources.
The Great Lakes Basin contains important breeding and migration habitat for all types of migratory birds. Many migratory bird species dependent on deteriorating Great Lakes Basin habitat have suffered serious population declines in recent years.
Over 80 percent of the original wetlands in the Great Lakes Basin have been destroyed and such losses continue at a rate of 20,000 acres annually.
Contaminant burdens in the fish and wildlife resources of the Great Lakes Basin are substantial and the impacts of those contaminants on the life functions of important fish and wildlife resources are poorly understood. Concern over the effects of those contaminants on human health have resulted in numerous public health advisories recommending restricted or no consumption of Great Lakes fish.
The lower Great Lakes are uniquely different from the upper Great Lakes biologically, physically, and in the degree of human use and shoreline development, and special fishery resource assessments and management activities are necessary to respond effectively to these special circumstances.
Short Title of 2006 Amendment
Short Title of 1998 Amendment
“This title [enacting this chapter] may be cited as the ‘Great Lakes Fish and Wildlife Restoration Act of 1990’.”Title II of Pub. L. 101–646 was repealed by Pub. L. 105–265, § 3(b), Oct. 19, 1998, 112 Stat. 2358.
Continued Monitoring and Assessment of Study Findings and Recommendations
“The Director of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service—
shall continue to monitor the status, and the assessment, management, and restoration needs, of the fish and wildlife resources of the Great Lakes Basin; and
may reassess and update, as necessary, the findings and recommendations of the report entitled ‘Great Lakes Fishery Resources Restoration Study’, submitted to the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives on September 13, 1995.”
“Congress finds that—
the Great Lakes have fish and wildlife communities that are structurally and functionally changing;
successful fish and wildlife management focuses on the lakes as ecosystems, and effective management requires the coordination and integration of efforts of many partners;
it is in the national interest to undertake activities in the Great Lakes Basin that support sustainable fish and wildlife resources of common concern provided under the recommendations of the Great Lakes Regional Collaboration authorized under Executive Order 13340 (69 Fed. Reg. 29043; relating to the Great Lakes Interagency Task Force) [33 U.S.C. 1268 note];
additional actions and better coordination are needed to protect and effectively manage the fish and wildlife resources, and the habitats upon which the resources depend, in the Great Lakes Basin;
as of the date of enactment of this Act [Oct. 11, 2006], actions are not funded that are considered essential to meet the goals and objectives in managing the fish and wildlife resources, and the habitats upon which the resources depend, in the Great Lakes Basin; and
the Great Lakes Fish and Wildlife Restoration Act [of 1990] (16 U.S.C. 941 et seq.) allows Federal agencies, States, and tribes to work in an effective partnership by providing the funding for restoration work.”
“Congress finds that—
the Great Lakes Fishery Resources Restoration Study, for which a report was submitted to Congress in 1995, was a comprehensive study of the status, and the assessment, management, and restoration needs, of the fishery resources of the Great Lakes Basin, and was conducted through the joint effort of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, State fish and wildlife resource management agencies, Indian tribes, and the Great Lakes Fishery Commission; and
“(2) the study—
found that, although State, Provincial, Native American Tribal, and Federal agencies have made significant progress toward the goal of restoring a healthy fish community to the Great Lakes Basin, additional actions and better coordination are needed to protect and effectively manage the fisheries and related resources in the Great Lakes Basin; and
recommended actions that are not currently funded but are considered essential to meet goals and objectives in managing the resources of the Great Lakes Basin.”