National Fisherman

The 2013 farm bill emerged from the U.S. Senate this week with two amendments to help the fishing industry, introduced by Massachusetts Sen. William "Mo" Cowan, his staff announced Monday.

One amendment calls for some sort of catch insurance similar to crop insurance used by farmers.

The other would make low-interest loans available to the fishing industry to cope with the economic disaster declared in the fishery last year by acting Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank.

But the bill still has months to go. The House is expected to pass its own version, then the two will be reconciled in committee, where support for new spending on the fishing industry might face an uphill battle.

"Our fishermen are hurting and they need our help. I was pleased that the Senate-passed farm bill included my provision to resolve an inequity in the law and provide fishermen access to disaster loans just like other agriculture producers," Cowan said in a written statement. He was unavailable for an interview.

Read the full story at Standard-Times>>

Inside the Industry

Abe Williams, who was elected to the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association board last spring, has been selected as the new president as of September.

Williams fishes the F/V Crimson Fury, and is president of Nuna Resources, a nonprofit that supports sustainable resource development in rural Alaska, including fighting for an international solution to issues raised by the proposed Pebble Mine project.


The Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi is teaming up with leading shark-tracking nonprofit Ocearch to build the most extensive shark-tagging program in the Gulf of Mexico region.

In October, Ocearch is bringing its unique research vessel, the M/V Ocearch, to the gulf for a multi-species study to generate previously unattainable data on critical shark species, including hammerhead, tiger and mako sharks.

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