Bill banning sales of shark fins awaits Senate vote

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Legislation prohibiting the sale or distribution of shark fins in Connecticut is awaiting final legislative action.

The bill awaits a Senate vote after clearing the House of Representatives last week, 110-28. The legislation had originally banned the possession of shark fins.

Democratic Rep. David Michel of Stamford says lawmakers introduced the bill to protect vulnerable shark populations, which have been declining due to overfishing. He says once the fin is removed, the shark is thrown back into the ocean and dies from suffocation or blood loss.

Violators face a $500 fine, up to three months in prison, or both.

The Humane Society of the United States predicts the bill will have minimal impact on Connecticut fisheries, where sharks accounted for less than 1% of all landed species in 2017.

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