National Fisherman


One proposal calls for expanding the nearby whiting fishery and elevating that seafood's culinary profile.

Another seeks to experiment with methods of growing new shellfish in Massachusetts waters, and a third looks to take advantage of the exploding international medical market for the chitin that comes from lobster and crab shells.

Those are just a few of the more than a half-dozen grant proposals assembled by Gloucester-based maritime entrepreneurs and partnerships in pursuit of federal fishing monies under a new Saltonstall-Kennedy Act grant program.

Considered collectively, the proposals are as varied as they are innovative, offering a glimpse of some of the commercial forces that may help shape Gloucester's waterfront as the city moves in earnest into the wide curve of the 21st century.

"It's really exciting to see this kind of energy and these kinds of ideas coming out of Gloucester," said Sarah Garcia, the city's harbor planner. "These people worked really hard on these applications and it shows."

The deadline for the grant applications was last Sunday, and the Department of Commerce, which oversees NOAA and the grant program, had said that successful candidates would begin receiving funds in January 2014.

That schedule now is in flux. The review process for awarding the money — projected at between $5 million and $10 million — is held hostage by the partial shutdown of the federal government.

Read the full story at the Gloucester Daily 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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