Congress stood solidly on the side of anglers and hunters late last year, as it specified in an appropriations bill that unwarranted regulation of fishing tackle and ammunition with lead components via the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) would be banned during the 2015 fiscal year.
“We applaud Congressional leadership for protecting the nation’s 60 million anglers from unjustified restrictions on fishing equipment that anglers have safely used for decades,” said Mike Nussman, president of the American Sportfishing Association.
Section 425 of the $1.1 trillion bill states, “None of the funds made available by this or any other act may be used to regulate the lead content of ammunition, ammunition components, or fishing tackle . . .”
But the fix is only temporary. Should Congress pass the Sportsmen’s Package Bill in 2015, which was derailed by last year’s Senate, the protection could become permanent.
During the past few years, environmental and other groups persistently have lobbied the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to ban use of lead by anglers, hunters, and shooters.
“On multiple occasions, the Environmental Protection Agency has been petitioned by anti-fishing organizations to federally ban fishing tackle containing lead based on its impact on wildlife, a position that is not based on sound science,” Nussman added.