National Fisherman


With the Belford Seafood Co-op as a backdrop, U.S. Congressman Frank Pallone Jr. (D-6th District) came to the Middletown shoreline Monday to talk about a bill that could help the storm-tossed fishing industry, still struggling to right itself after Sandy.

Pallone introduced today a federal disaster relief bill (NJ-06) to provide $193 million to fully fund the estimated cost to recover storm-affected fisheries in New Jersey and New York. New Jersey would get $121 million of that money.

The funding could be used by both commercial and recreational fishing industries -- to cover uninsured losses suffered during Hurricane Sandy, and to fix up marinas, rebuild public access docks for fishing, and rehabilitate bait and tackle shops.

"I don't have to tell you that the amount of damage that was done here at the co-op was extensive," said Pallone. "Not only the processing plant, the fish market, the restaurant, and also to the infrastructure. For the most part, they had no insurance."

Read the full story at Middletown Patch>>

Inside the Industry

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.

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Louisiana’s Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, which governs commercial and recreational fishing in the state, got a new boss in January. Charlie Melancon, a former member of the U.S. House of Representatives and state legislator, was appointed to the job by the state’s new governor, John Bel Edwards.

Although much of his non-political work in the past has centered on the state’s sugar cane industry, Melancon said he is confident that other experience, including working closely with fishermen when in Congress, has prepared him well for this new challenge.

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