Massachusetts reps seek aid for state’s fishermen


Members of the Massachusetts congressional delegation are calling for federal disaster relief for Bay State fishermen.

“We need a disaster declaration from the administration,” U.S. Sen. John Kerry told reporters gathered outside his Boston office Aug. 3, according to the State House News Service.

He said that just as droughts in the Midwest are withering cornfields, “off our coastline, Mother Nature is taking away the fish,” according to the news service.

The report — a preliminary fish stock assessment — showed that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s plan to rebuild cod, haddock and flounder and other groundfish fisheries could drop next year’s fish harvests by about 70 percent.

The one-page document shows the biggest drop in Gulf of Maine haddock harvests, which would fall by 73 percent from 2012 to 2013. Compared with 2011 levels, Georges Bank yellowtail flounder is set for a 93 percent drop-off in 2013.

In 2010, fishermen in New Bedford brought in $306 million worth of catch, the greatest value in 30 years, which placed it as the top port in the nation in the value of its catch, according to NOAA.

While using the report to back his call for disaster relief, Kerry also said swings in the projections by the National Marine Fisheries Service make it hard for fishermen to have confidence that the projections are accurate.

Kerry was joined in his appeal for relief by Sen. Scott Brown and U.S. Reps. Barney Frank, John Tierney and William Keating.

U.S. Rep. Ed Markey, the ranking Democrat on the Natural Resources Committee, called for federal assistance, but did not call into question the federal agency’s preliminary assessment.

In February, Brown called for the firing of NOAA Administrator Jane Lubchenco because of a report that NOAA officials used a $300,000 “undercover vessel” as a “party boat,” including for a trip to Seattle for lunch where the boat stalled out in a shipping lane.

Click here for the full report.


Mustang Survival Hires PR Partner

Formidable Media will provide public relations for the safety gear and apparel manufacturer.

Southern Marinas Acquires N.C. Facility

Ocean Isle Marina along the Intracoastal Waterway is the latest acquisition of Southern Marinas Holdings II.

NMMA Reports Retail Trends for Cruising, Water Sports and Fishing Boats

A newly released section from its U.S. Recreational Boating Statistical Abstract shows record growth across these categories.

Smartgyro Expands Operations

The gyrostabilizer manufacturer moves to a larger facility and makes hires in anticipation of growth.

SmartPlug Adds Employee, Moves to Larger Facility

Andrew Lankford is named quality assurance engineer, while the move gives the company 40 percent more manufacturing space.

The Next Wavve

The smart-device-based navigation app expands functionality with real-time tide and current monitoring.

Dealers: Have You Added Service Staff?

This month’s Pulse Report survey addresses the service department. Take the survey here.