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World News | US court strikes down charterboat tracking rule

World News | US court strikes down charterboat tracking rule

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NEW ORLEANS, Feb. 25 (AP) — An appeals court struck down a federal fisheries management rule that required operators of private charter boats in the Gulf of Mexico to equip their vessels with tracking devices, a move in Louisiana and Florida. A victory for the group of charter operators who challenged the rule in a 2020 lawsuit.

A panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans on Thursday overturned a lower court ruling that upheld the rule, which was designed to help regulators track the amount of fish caught on recreational charter boats.

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The panel rejected the administration’s arguments, saying tracking devices are not the type of equipment regulators can require recreational boats to have under the Magnuson-Stevens Act, the federal fisheries regulation law passed by Congress.

It also said regulators failed to adequately consider charter operators’ concerns when adopting the rule that the rule could violate Fourth Amendment protections against unreasonable searches. The opinion, written by Judge Jennifer Walker Elrod, did not rule on the constitutionality of the statute, but said it “probably violates the Fourth Amendment.”

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Charter operators have complained that the requirement places a costly and unnecessary burden on charter operators. Lawyers for the operators say the charter business represents only a small fraction of fishing activity in the Gulf of Mexico.

Along with Elrod, President George W. Bush’s nominee, the case was decided by Judge Priscilla Richman, also President George W. Bush’s nominee; and Donald Trump President Trump’s nominee Andrew Oldham.

“The rights of all charter fishing businesses in the Gulf of Mexico have been vindicated,” John J. Vecchione, an attorney for the conservative New Civil Liberties Coalition, said at a news conference. where represents the charter operator.

Federal fisheries officials declined immediate comment.

“We received the court ruling last night and are currently reviewing it,” Allison Garrett, a spokeswoman for NOAA’s fisheries regulator, said in an email Friday. .”(Associated Press)

(This is an unedited and auto-generated story from a Syndicated News feed, the content body may not have been modified or edited by LatestLY staff)

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