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May 30 - Chatham County Board of Commissioners Urges the U.S. Secretary of Commerce to Declare Fishery Disaster for Coastal Georgia

Savannah Business Journal Staff Report

May 30, 2018 - Chairman Albert J. Scott signed a letter today requesting the Secretary of Commerce, Wilber Ross, to declare the waters off the coast of Georgia a fishery disaster.

On January 24, 2018, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) closed federal waters off the coast of Georgia due to prolonged waters temperatures at or below 9 degrees Celsius. The closure was needed to protect the population of spawning shrimp. The closure has kept shrimpers from working for the past four months. The loss of income has been devastating to both the shrimpers and the local economy.

The designation of a fishery disaster begins the federal process of providing assistance to shrimpers affected by the closure of the waters. 

The waters off the coast of Georgia reopened last week and shrimpers were able to return to work.

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