NOAA Fisheries works with a number of federal, regional, and state and territorial partners to ensure the sustainable management of U.S. fisheries. Most marine fishery regulations implemented in United States federal waters (generally from 3 to 200 nautical miles from shore) are developed under the authority of the Magnuson-Steven Act, in conjunction with the eight regional fishery management councils. The State-Federal program guides NOAA Fisheries' interactions with coastal states and island territories/commonwealths, three Interstate Fisheries Commissions, and other national groups.
Interstate Marine Fisheries Commissions
The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) was formed in 1942 and develops fishery management plans to sustain the Atlantic coast states’ shared coastal fishery resources. Examples of these fisheries include Atlantic menhaden, striped bass, and red drum. NOAA Fisheries develops regulations for species managed by the ASMFC and its member states under the Atlantic Striped Bass Conservation Act and the Atlantic Coastal Fisheries Cooperative Management Act. Regulations are developed and implemented in federal waters to support Commission actions (see: Title 50 CFR Part 697-Atlantic Coastal Fisheries Cooperative Management). The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is also a key partner of ASMFC.
The Gulf States Marine Fisheries Commission (GSMFC) was established in 1949 and recommends management measures to sustain fisheries to the governors and legislatures of the five Gulf States. Examples of these fisheries include Gulf menhaden, oysters, and black drum. The states do not relinquish any of their rights or responsibilities in regulating their fisheries in their territorial jurisdictions. GSMFC uses scientific studies by state and federal agencies, advice from law enforcement officials, and input from the commercial and recreational fishing industries to make management recommendations. GSMFC manages the Fisheries Information Network (GulfFIN), a state-federal partnership to collect, manage, and disseminate statistical data on commercial and recreational fisheries. The GSMFC Head Boat Port Sampling Program samples catches, collects catch reports, and gathers fishing effort data from Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida ports.
The Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission (PSMFC) was formed in 1947. It promotes and supports actions to conserve, develop, and manage fishery resources in California, Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and Alaska by coordinating research activities, monitoring fishing activities, and facilitating a wide variety of projects. Examples of these fisheries include walleye pollock, salmon, and rockfishes. PSMFC manages two important programs—the Pacific Fisheries Information Network (PacFIN), which collects, processes, analyzes, and reports statistics for fisheries along the West Coast and the Alaska Fisheries Information Network (AKFIN), which collects similar key information for North Pacific and Alaskan fisheries. Through these data management systems, PSMFC reports this information on its website, in various publications, and to researchers. Fishery managers, scientists, and others can then monitor these resources more effectively. The PSMFC also administers the Electronic Monitoring (EM) Program, which tests the viability of EM to document individual accountability of catch and bycatch in the Pacific Trawl Rationalization Program.
State and Territory Partners
NOAA Fisheries works closely with state and territory partners to collect data, conserve fish habitat, assess the status of fish stocks, and implement effective management programs to ensure the sustainability of U.S. fisheries. Use the map below to explore our state fisheries partners.