President Donald Trump has tweeted a series of tweets about the state of Florida, calling on Congress to pass legislation that would require the state to pay $1.7 billion to fish on an illegal fishing channel off the coast of Key West, Florida.
Trump’s tweets have sparked calls from local politicians in Florida for the federal government to step in and help.
“We are begging the federal governments help to stop this illegal fishing.
We are calling on the US government to take action,” Florida Congressman Dennis Ross told reporters in a conference call.
Ross said Florida is “going to have to get its act together,” and the state will have to find other sources of revenue.
“Florida is going to have a hard time,” Ross said.
“It’s not going to be easy.”
The president’s tweets were a response to a story in The New York Times published Monday, which alleged that fish from an illegal channel were being caught off the Florida Keys and sold to Chinese fishermen who use them to make bait for their boats.
The Times said that while the fish are being caught legally, some Chinese boats are operating the channel illegally.
“Congress should pass legislation to stop the illegal fishing of the fish and block this illegal activity,” Ross wrote in a tweet on Monday.
“This illegal fishing will cost the Florida economy $1 billion.
We should have more than $1 Billion to protect our economy and the American people.”
Florida’s congressional delegation is scheduled to hold a press conference on Wednesday to discuss the issue.
Ross is also calling for the US Congress to enact the National Fisheries Policy, which would require a federal fishery management plan for all fish stocks.
The fishing ban is a move to stop fishermen from illegally fishing on a federally protected fishery, which is protected under the National Environmental Policy Act.
The Fish and Wildlife Service said in a statement that it has a “strong record” of enforcing the Fisheries Policy and “all fishing vessels and fishing vessels operating in Florida are inspected regularly and subject to appropriate enforcement action.”
“The Department of Agriculture has determined that there is a strong likelihood that a violation will result in an environmental impact,” the statement said.