Sacramento, CA – North Coast State Senator Mike McGuire, Chair of the Joint Committee on Fisheries and Aquaculture, has been focused on the unprecedented delay of the crab season for months. Leading a bi-partisan delegation of state legislators, McGuire requested Governor Brown advance a disaster declaration due to the devastating closure of the multi-million dollar crab harvest. That request from the Governor for federal declarations of a fishery disaster and a commercial fishery failure happened moments ago.
“We are grateful to the Governor, as well as the Director of Fish and Wildlife, for making the official request for a disaster declaration today to assist our crab fishermen, their families and crews,” Senator McGuire said. “This will provide desperately needed assistance to the crab industry and local businesses who are struggling. Fishermen are losing homes, racking up debt they can’t afford, and selling off assets, and the impacts are even greater in coastal towns that depend on a healthy crab harvest for their livelihood.”
Senator McGuire recently authored a letter, along with a delegation of 10 other state legislators, encouraging the Governor to advance a disaster declaration to the United States Secretary of Commerce for the California crab industry and allied sectors.
More details of the crab disaster declaration will be discussed at this Thursday’s annual Fisheries Forum, convened by Senator McGuire, chairman of the Joint Committee on Fisheries and Aquaculture.
The 43rd Annual Zeke Grader Fisheries Forum, scheduled for Thursday, February 11 at the State Capitol, will include presentations from John Laird, California’s Natural Resources Secretary, and Charlton Bonham, Director of the state Department of Fish and Wildlife, as well as commercial and recreation fishing representatives, river advocates, aquaculture producers and fish processors.
For more information about the Fisheries Forum visit the Committee web site at: http://fisheries.legislature.ca.gov/.