SWAN’S ISLAND — The Maine Coastal Program has awarded $155,050 to support seven waterfront development projects. The funds are awarded through the Shore and Harbor Grant Program. These awards will provide coastal towns with funds for harbor management, dredging studies, public access and waterfront planning through municipal and regional projects. Locally, $20,000 was awarded to the town of Swan’s Island to “Perform geotechnical investigation for reconstruction of a wharf for safe use by fishermen and other users.”
AUGUSTA— The Maine Warden Service is looking for new team members who are dedicated to conserving Maine’s fish, wildlife and other natural resources and protecting the people who enjoy them. Interested applicants are encouraged to submit their application as soon as it is complete.
Before applicants can apply, they must pass the physical fitness exam. Register for the exam by calling the Maine Warden Service at (207) 287-5305. Typically, applicants are also required to pass an ALERT exam through the Criminal Justice Academy. The ALERT exam is currently waived due to COVID-19. Visit mainegamewarden.com/gethired to learn more.
BRUNSWICK—Three years ago, the Maine Coast Fishermen’s Association (MCFA) began working with fishermen and local businesses to improve scallop management and give a voice to scallop fishermen on important regulatory issues. As a result of the work from these efforts, at a virtual meeting of the New England Fishery Management Council, the council voted in favor of regulations that protect both the scallop resource and the smaller Northern New England scallop fishing businesses.
The outcome of that meeting ensures that there will be a scientifically set limit on scallops harvested from the Gulf of Maine and meaningful investments in science and accountability to ensure the resource continues to grow.
The council also voted to set aside a portion of catch specifically for the federally permitted smaller fishing businesses from Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts. The scallop set aside will allow for preferential access for the small boats within this area and create stability for the small-boat fleet moving forward.
Scallops are one of the most valuable fisheries in the U.S. but for decades the resource had been absent from the Gulf of Maine. As waters warmed and state fisheries rebounded, scallops have begun to rebuild in fishing grounds offshore in federal waters. With the potential growth of the scallop fishery in the Gulf of Maine, access became a contentious issue as businesses from southern New England and the mid–Atlantic vied for access and control of the fishery. In response, fishermen from around the state, the Department of Marine Resources, Downeast Dayboat and MCFA worked collaboratively to ensure that the small boats had a seat at the table and were heard throughout this process.