National Fisherman


For Patrice McCarron, whose goal is to sign up hundreds of Maine lobstermen for medical insurance, a faulty health insurance website is more than a mere inconvenience. It’s a major logistical headache.
 
With uninsured lobstermen scattered along 3,500 miles of coastline, McCarron, executive director of the Maine Lobstermen’s Association, can’t risk driving to a remote community to host an insurance enrollment fair only to discover that healthcare.gov is down, again.
 
“Mileage is expensive. Hotels are expensive,” she said. “So we’re really trying to be strategic.”
 
McCarron’s group is one of about 100 organizations across the country that received government grants to help people sign up for coverage. These groups of “navigators” have been stymied by the same technical problems that have thwarted individual consumers, and many say they have become worn down and discouraged.
 
Now they are hoping that this weekend will mark a turnaround for the program, which they once promoted with enthusiasm and more recently have had trouble defending.
 
Read the full story at Bangor Daily News>>

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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