Public Comment Sought On Draft Spending Plan For Fishery Disaster Funds

May 13, 2020

Public input is being sought on a draft spending plan for $7.7 million in federal aid that will support some local businesses that lost revenue due to Hurricane Florence.  The spending plan must be approved by NOAA Fisheries for the state to receive the funding.  The North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries said in a news release that the federal fisheries disaster aid will be distributed to affected seafood dealers and processors, bait and tackle shops, for-hire businesses, and ocean fishing piers. Commercial fishermen and shellfish harvesters already received compensation for Hurricane Florence losses. Written comments on the plan should be submitted by 5pm on May 28. NOAA Fisheries’ 2019 Hurricane Florence Fisheries Damage Assessment report estimated the 2018 storm caused $38 million in damages to vessels and business, $56 million in lost revenues, and 3,500 fishing-related job losses.