Local Fishermen’s Organization Hails New Groundfish Disaster Distribution Plan

fishing boatCHATHAM – A new state plan to distribute the final $6.7 million in federal groundfish fisheries disaster money is garnering praise from local fishermen.

The new plan from the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries gives direct financial aid to an additional 19 percent of vessels. Local fishermen had objected to the original plan, which cut out more than half of the Chatham groundfish fleet. The Cape Cod Fishermen’s Association, calls the new plan “more inclusive,” and worked with local, state, and federal officials in an effort to distribute money to more vessels.

“I thank Governor Baker for listening to our concerns,” said Jim Nash, a Chatham fisherman and president of the George’s Bank Cod Fixed Gear Sector. “We appreciate the hard work it took to expand the distribution criteria to help as many active fishermen in the industry as possible.”

“A lot of people put in a lot of time and effort to make our community’s point of view heard,” said Chatham fisherman Tim Linnell, f/v Perry’s Pride II. “We are grateful that Sen. Wolf, Rep. Peake and the whole Cape and Islands delegation worked with us to get an outcome that helped more working fishermen.”

It’s unclear how much money each vessel will receive.

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