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Mass. gov asks again for emergency fishing aid

November 15, 2011

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BOSTON—Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick has renewed his request for $21 million in federal fisheries disaster assistance for communities affected by new fishing rules.

Patrick was denied the same request last year, but the U.S. Commerce Department said future aid could be available.

On Tuesday, Patrick wrote Commerce Secretary John Bryson to request the aid and sent two new reports he said detail the "severe economic hardship" caused by the fishing rules, which went into effect in May 2010.

The rules have been contentious. U.S. Sen. Scott Brown has co-authored a bill to scrap them, saying they're killing jobs.

But on Monday, 108 fishermen signed a letter to New England congressmen, saying the new system is working. They asked Congress not to overturn it based on a "few voices" that "have been amplified in the media."