National Fisherman


The State House bill aimed at better marketing the local seafood industry — filed by state Senate Minority leader Bruce Tarr, R-Gloucester, and already backed on the House side by Gloucester Democrat Rep. Ann-Margaret Ferrante — would create an entirely new function for the state’s Division of Marine Fisheries.

And expanding government’s hand into private industry services like marketing and other operations is a step that can understandably often send chills up and down the spines of business owners and consumers alike.

But this is indeed a measure that can provide credible and needed help to a fishing industry still caught in the grips of a federal regulatory stranglehold that has already spurred a recognized “economic disaster” and essentially collapsed the once-proud Gloucester fleet, whose fishermen and business owners are selling their boats and asking other steps in the face of bankruptcy and foreclosures.

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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