Written by Jen Finn
WASHINGTON — Less than three months after an effort to provide a pool of aid to distressed fisheries across the nation died at the end of the last Congress, efforts to secure disaster relief funding for New England fishermen are heating up on Capitol Hill.
Just before Congress left last weekend for a two-week Easter/Passover recess, the Senate passed a bipartisan amendment — sponsored by Sens. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska — calling for funds in the fiscal year 2014 budget to be set aside for aid for fisheries and fishing communities in New England as well as Alaska and the Gulf Coast.
The Warren-Murkowski amendment does not specify a dollar amount, and is, in effect, a non-binding provision attached to the Senate's version of the congressional budget plan for the fiscal year that begins Oct. 1. But, according to congressional sources, it foreshadows an intensified effort by Warren to work with senators from both parties to secure $150 million in funding for distressed fisheries across the country as the annual congressional appropriations process gets under way.
Read the full story at Seacoast Online>>
NOAA recently published a proposed rule that would implement a traceability plan to help combat IUU fishing. The program would seek to trace the origins of imported seafood by setting up reporting and filing procedures for products entering the U.S.
The traceability program would collect data on harvest, landing, and chain of custody of fish and fish products that have been identified as particularly vulnerable to IUU fishing and fraud.Read more...
The following was released by the Maine Department of Marine Resources on Jan. 22:
The Maine Department of Marine Resources announced an emergency regulation that will support the continued rebuilding effort in Maine’s scallop fishery. The rule, effective January 23, 2016, will close the Muscle Ridge Area near South Thomaston and the Western Penobscot Bay Area.Read more...