Willis "Bill" Blount calls himself "the poster child for struggling fishermen" in the hyper-regulated Northeast fishery.
His boat, the 77-foot stern trawler Ruthie B., for years has been the only boat fishing out of Nantucket, but for the last couple of months it has spent a lot of time in New Bedford harbor getting some necessary work done while the expenses continue to pile up.
Blount was the sole fishing permit holder to attend a three-hour help session in the city for those applying for a slice of the fisheries disaster money, according to Kevin Creighton, fiscal officer for the Mass. Division of Fisheries. Dozens of others have already filed their paperwork, he said.
Blount is 69, with absolutely no intention of doing anything but returning to fishing once all the work and inspections are done on his boat, which he built in 1979 at his family's Rhode Island boatyard a few years after he relocated himself to Nantucket.
For the last decade or so, he said, he has been struggling to adjust to ever-increasing restrictions. "You have to be creative to make it," he said.
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National Fisherman Live: 9/9/14
In this episode:
Seafood Watch upgrades status of 21 fish species
Calif. bill attacking seafood mislabeling approved
Ballot item would protect Bristol Bay salmon
NOAA closes cod, yellowtail fishing areas
Pacific panel halves young bluefin harvest
National Fisherman Live: 8/26/14
In this episode, National Fisherman Publisher Jerry Fraser talks about his early days dragging for redfish on the Vandal.
More than a dozen higher education institutions and federal and local fishery management agencies and organizations in American Samoa, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands and Hawaii have signed a memorandum of understanding aimed at building the capacity of the U.S. Pacific Island territories to manage their fisheries and fishery-related resources.