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Gloucester Fisherman Pushes Congress For Disaster Aid

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BOSTON (AP) — A top fishing industry advocate has told a Congressional committee that New England fishermen need major improvements in fishing law, but first they need disaster aid.

Gloucester fisherman Vito Giacalone of the Northeast Seafood Coalition testified Wednesday before a House committee considering the reauthorization of the nation’s fishery law. His testimony comes as New England fishermen struggle with huge cuts in their allowed catch.

Giacalone said current fishing law doesn’t work because it demands science know things it can’t know about how fish populations respond to their dynamic environment — including how they’ll behave and how fast they will recover.

He said the law must better recognize to this unpredictability, to give the industry much-needed stability.

But first, Giacalone said, fishermen critically need federal aid so the industry doesn’t collapse during the current crisis.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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