GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

Letters/My View

February 28, 2013

My View: Unified effort needed to back fleet

It is good that our former mayor, the much concerned John Bell, is ready to petition President Obama to issue an executive order to save the Northeast fisheries industry.

It is good that the sharp mind of former Congressman Barney Frank is so soon coming out of retirement to help the Northeast fisheries industry.

Yes, if we save our local fishing fleet from the last draconian cuts in their allocations decreed by NOAA, we are going to save the family fishing fleet all up and down the Northeast coast. And the family fishing fleet does not operate in a vacuum. Being a primary economic activity, fishing generates enough wealth and income to sustain many businesses on land. The family fishing fleet creates jobs and income for machine shops and paint stores and bread makers and ice makers.

The local fisheries industry does not want a gift from the nation. The local fisheries industry is desperately offering to give a gift to the nation. While all other industries seem to request one form or another of assistance to the tune of $250,000 for the creation of a single job, the fisheries industry is offering to create jobs at zero cost to the taxpayer. Is that clear?

The fisheries industry is not asking for money to create jobs. It is asking for the removal of rules and regulations that are destroying jobs. The destruction of the family fishing fleet will only add burdens to the national taxpayer.

The president is to be made aware of this dysfunction between his words “jobs, jobs, jobs” and the actions of some of the agencies in his administration. But perhaps that will not be sufficient. If the president sees the request to stop NOAA now as a request of a few individuals, it is likely that he will justify his neglect of the needs of the fisheries industry as a personal preference to work for the welfare of the nation as a whole.

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