Written by Jen Finn
The Northeast Seafood Coalition's spending plan for the approximately $33 million in federal disaster relief headed to coastal New England and New York would provide $11 million in immediate direct cash assistance to permit and vessel owners, with the remainder of the funds allocated for cash assistance to crews and a buyback program for fishing permits, but not vessels.
The plan — which the coalition considers an industry recommendation to NOAA, Congress and the Northeast states receiving the federal disaster funds — still remains something of a work in progress and is reflective of the intricacies involved in developing a plan palatable to all stakeholders.
Rather than a state-by-state disbursement, the NSC plan calls for a regional allocation of the funds among Northeast multispecies permit holders to alleviate any potential inconsistencies that might exist in the final disbursement plans operated by individual states.
"We're concerned about inconsistency among the states," said Jackie Odell, executive director of the Gloucester-based coalition. "We have many members who live in one state, but land fish in another. We've been looking at this from a fishery-wide and harvester perspective."
Read the full story at Gloucester Times>>
NOAA recently published a proposed rule that would implement a traceability plan to help combat IUU fishing. The program would seek to trace the origins of imported seafood by setting up reporting and filing procedures for products entering the U.S.
The traceability program would collect data on harvest, landing, and chain of custody of fish and fish products that have been identified as particularly vulnerable to IUU fishing and fraud.Read more...
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.Read more...