Alaska Salmon Research Task Force Act

Floor Speech

Date: April 26, 2022
Location: Washington, DC


Mr. BENTZ. Madam Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.

Madam Speaker, I rise in support of H.R. 6651, the Alaska Salmon Research Task Force Act, sponsored by our late colleague, the dean of the House, Representative Don Young of Alaska.

The day before his passing, Congressman Don Young was in our Natural Resources Committee room discussing the need for this legislation.

Since 2018 alone, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has issued 14 fisheries disasters determinations in Alaska. This bill seeks scientific answers and recommendations to solve these declining salmon runs.

Specifically, the bill would require the Secretary of Commerce, in consultation with the Governor of Alaska, to create an Alaska Salmon Research Task Force composed of up to 19 individuals representing various sectors of the salmon economy and culture.

The intent of the task force is to create a coordinated salmon research strategy, and support collaboration and coordination in salmon conservation efforts. The task force must also produce a report and recommendations within 1 year of convening.

If Mr. Young were here today, I am certain that he would remind us that salmon are important to Alaskans due to their cultural, economic, and recreational value. I urge my colleagues to honor the late dean of the House by supporting this bill.

Madam Speaker, I urge adoption of this bill, and I yield back the balance of my time.