New England Fishermen meet with Senators for help - ABC6 - Providence, RI and New Bedford, MA News, Weather

New England Fishermen meet with Senators for help

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By: Chelsea Priest,

The New England fishing business has been hurting for years as catching limits continue to decrease sharply. Many have left the business all together but there are some who are still fighting to keep their livelihood going.

Meghan Lapp who works for a commercial fish netting and fishing gear manufacturer says the economic status of the fleet is so bad, in Ned Bedford the fleet has gone from over 200 to just 26 ground fishing boats in just three years.

Now with another catch limit restriction quickly approaching on May 1st, many fishermen may need to call it quits all together. Jim Kendall who owns New Bedford Seafood Consultation says, "We're hurting. There really isn't the need for what's going on to be going on. Crisis happens everywhere but when you start inventing them and manufacturing them, that's where we are having our problems."

It's that reasoning that has so many fishermen upset. They say that there are plenty of fish to be caught and government restrictions are not realistic. Lapp continues, "I have fishermen coming into me all the time and the fish are so scrawny, they are starving to death because the fish are overpopulated."

Today in New Bedford, Senator Warren and Senator Cowan spoke to a group of men and women who are involved in the fishing business, all hoping something can be done. Senator Warren stresses that it's the science behind the catching cuts that needs to be improved. "It takes money to get out there and do the right kind of science and it's important that NOAA gets out there and really dedicates the money to science and not other work in their administration."


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