The Act created eight Regional Fishery Management Councils to manage the Exclusive Economic Zone.
The Councils prepare fishery management plans (FMPs) for those fisheries that they determine require active federal management. After public hearings, revised FMPs are submitted to the Secretary of Commerce for approval.
NMFS and the Coast Guard share responsibility for federal fishery enforcement under the MSA, with assistance from states through cooperative agreements.
Enforcement of fishery regulations is poor in most areas and, with the current lack of resources, is one of the major impediments to improved fishery management.
National Fishery Program - Administration