National Fisherman


Lawmakers from Maine and two other states are urging federal regulators to "exercise all authority under the law" to help the New England groundfishing fleet weather severe catch limits that many fear could decimate the industry.

In a letter sent Thursday, 13 members of Congress from Maine, Massachusetts and New Hampshire asked acting Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank to help owners cover the costs of having catch monitors on vessels as mandated by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. All four members of Maine's delegation -- Republican Sen. Susan Collins and independent Sen. Angus King and Democratic Reps. Chellie Pingree and Mike Michaud -- signed the letter.

"NOAA Fisheries must seriously consider the impact of further burdening our fishermen with at-sea monitoring costs and dedicate the resources necessary to continue to cover these costs," the members wrote. "Even without the drastic reductions in catch limits, our fishermen cannot feasibly afford their expected share of at-sea monitors."

Read the full story at Portland Press Herald>>

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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