U.S. Sen. David Vitter (R-La.), top Republican on the Environment and Public Works Committee, today sent a letter to Penny Pritzker, Secretary of the Department of Commerce. In the letter, Vitter urges Secretary Pritzker to deny a request by the Gulf of Mexico Regional Fishing Management Council (Gulf Council) to divide the recreational red snapper sector.

"Recreational fishing is a way of life for many Louisianians and residents along the Gulf Coast and the Gulf Council's amendment is putting that in danger. Their proposal to further divide the recreational fishing sector is completely unnecessary, based on an incomplete economic analysis, and goes well beyond their federally mandated authority," said Vitter. "It is crucial for Gulf fishermen, tackle shops, boat retailers, and the surrounding communities that Secretary Pritzker denies the Gulf Council's request to move forward on this highly controversial proposal.

In October 2014, the Gulf Council voted on a controversial amendment that would divide the recreational red snapper sector, and has virtually no public support. Vitter has been urging the Gulf Council to protect public access to the red snapper fishery. As part of his investigation into the collusion between environmental activists, lawyers and lobbyists, billionaires and their supporting foundations who use large sums of money to influence environmental public policy, in September, Vitter detailed the environmental collusion attempts to shut out public fishing. In June, Vitter wrote an op-ed in the Houma Courier, "Protecting red snapper fishing," which discussed fairly managing fisheries in the Gulf of Mexico and protecting the rights of recreational anglers - particularly with access to the red snapper fishery.

Click here to read today's letter.