National Fisherman


On one level, the idea of seeking a "bridge" plan" as Gloucester Mayor Carolyn Kirk calls it, as a transition toward a new future for the city's waterfront is a good idea, just as it would be for any other fishing community.

Even if the current federally-created quota crisis is resolved, no one expects the commercial fishing industry to return to what it had once been. And it is indeed important for city and business leaders to explore alternative opportunities for marine industrial use.

But the idea of "redeploying" shut down fishing vessels for research, and a hope of "working with" NOAA leaders on that and other projects comes across as so naive that it's virtually insulting to both fishermen and state and federal lawmakers who have pursued cooperative research with NOAA for years and basically told to take a hike.

And that naivete is topped by city waterfront development director Sarah Garcia's embarrassing comment that "before, it was characterized as handouts to fishermen; this is different, this is investing in a new marine environment."

Read the full story at Gloucester Times>>

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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