(Washington, DC)-U.S. Senators Judd Gregg and Jeanne Shaheen today announced that they have secured $825,000 to help New Hampshire commercial fishermen and lobstermen comply with recent federal rule changes and stay competitive. The Senate approved the funding as part of the Fiscal Year 2010 Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies Appropriations bill, which will now go to conference committee to be merged with House bill.
"New Hampshire's fishing industries are critical to the economy of Seacoast communities, and require assistance to remain competitive in light of new and existing harvest restrictions. This funding is an important step, and we will continue working to minimize the impact of these new regulations on the Granite State's fishermen and lobstermen," said Gregg and Shaheen in a joint statement.
The New Hampshire Commercial Fishermen Sustainability Initiative will allow the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department to provide assistance to the 300 commercial fishermen and lobstermen that have been impacted by recent federal fisheries regulations, such as a rule that requires replacement of all floating groundlines with sinking groundlines to prevent entanglement with whales. These costly modifications to fishing gear have put state fishermen at a competitive disadvantage with others in the Gulf of Maine during already difficult times.
The funding was approved today by the Senate as part of the Fiscal Year 2010 Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies Appropriations bill, which includes $7,550,000 for projects in New Hampshire.