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Abstract

This year, six menhaden- related bills were introduced in the Virginia General Assembly. Delegate John Cosgrove (RChesapeake) introduced legislation in the House of Delegates that was identical to Senate Bill 765, a bill that proposed to shift oversight of the menhaden fishery to the VMRC. This article aims to highlight the unique stance taken by Virginia's legislature and explain why this management is better left to the commission responsible for managing every other fishery in the Commonwealth. While there may not be a conclusive link between reduction industry practices and a decline in water quality, Virginia's legislators should recognize the shift towards an ecosystem-based model as the most effective way to sustainably manage fisheries and all natural resources.