New England fisheries get federal disaster relief

By

SeafoodSource staff

Published on
July 21, 2013

The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee bill that would provide for some USD 150 million (EUR 114 million) to address economic fishery disasters and require NOAA to charter fishermen’s boats for cooperative stock assessment research would also shut down NOAA’s northeast regional headquarters in Gloucester’s Blackburn Industrial Park and fold its jobs and operations into smaller community-based offices across the region.

The budget measure — backed last week by the full Senate Appropriations Committee and its Commerce, Justice, Science subcommittee — would steer USD 150 million into long-awaited disaster aid for Massachusetts fishermen as well as those in other New England states, Alaska and Mississippi.

That money, though it must hold up through approval by the full Senate and then reconciliation with a sister Appropriations measure from the House, would come nearly a year after the Department of Commerce recognized the Northeast groundfishery, with Gloucester’s beleaguered fleet of small, independent and family-owned fishing boats, as an “economic disaster” in a declaration issued by then-Acting Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank last September.

Click here to read the full story from the Gloucester Daily Times >

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