Mass. fishermen receiving disaster aid this week

Almost half of the first 57 Massachusetts-based permit holders expected to receive direct disaster aid this week are based in Essex County, establishing the North Shore as one of the first areas to receive tangible financial assistance since the Northeast multispecies groundfish fishery was declared a federal disaster in 2012.
 
Late last week, the state released approximately $2 million of the projected $6.5 million in direct aid to permit holders already registered in the state system as vendors and whose information is current, according to the state officials.
 
Mary Griffin, commissioner of the state Department of Fish & Game, said Tuesday that 28 of the initial beneficiaries are Essex County-based permit holders.
 
Those permit holders, representing almost one-quarter of the 201 Massachusetts-based permit holders eligible for the direct assistance, should see the $32,500 per permit transferred into their accounts early this week, Griffin said.
 
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