National Fisherman


A bill that will provide funding for communities affected by Hurricane Sandy and that also includes $150 million for fisheries disaster relief will now be voted on in two parts, leaving the fate of funds for local fishing grounds up in the air until Jan. 15, The Washington Post reported Wednesday.

House leadership decided not to allow a vote on the bill, which had already passed in the Senate Wednesday, reversing a previously announced schedule, according to a news release from Saving Seafood, a fishing industry advocacy group.

"Over the course of our history, there have been natural disasters across our country and, without question, Congress has passed legislation to provide aid to those affected each time," said Rep. Bill Keating, D-Mass., in a statement Wednesday night. "Now, it is families on the East Coast suffering after Hurricane Sandy and our fishermen who have been dealing with their own economic disaster who need relief. Yet the House Republican leadership has failed to bring the aid package to the floor. ... Shame on the House leadership for not doing their job."

Read the full story at the New Bedford Standard-Times>>

Inside the Industry

The Downeast Salmon Federation has received a major grant from the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities to ensure and improve the water quality of eastern Maine’s most important rivers, according to the Ellsworth American.

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Louisiana crab fishermen and their catch are feeling the pressure of a downturn in the state economy, and a resulting upturn of people entering the fishery.

“It’s a crazy business right now,” said Pete Gerica, the New Orleans fisherman who now serves as president or the Louisiana Crab Task Force, a legislatively-created board of industry voices that makes recommendations to state government.

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