April 29, 2013

New England fishermen rally for relief from cuts

Steve LeBlanc / The Associated Press

BOSTON — New England fishermen and their political allies have rallied at a Boston fish pier to make an urgent call for relief from devastating cuts in fish catch limits.

As of May 1, fishermen who chase bottom-dwelling groundfish face cuts that fishermen say will destroy the industry. But regulators say the weak condition of key stocks mandate the cuts.

The worst of the reductions is a year-to-year cut of 77 percent in cod in the Gulf of Maine.

At the rally, U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren called for disaster relief, arguing Washington should be as quick to respond to a disaster for fishermen as it is to respond to disasters that strike farmers.

Fishermen have also called on regulators to extend an interim emergency measure that would allow them to catch more fish this year.

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