Richard Bogren | 8/26/2006 1:26:10 AM
Louisiana’s fisheries resources affected by hurricanes Katrina and Rita will benefit from fisheries restoration funding in the 2006 Federal Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, according to state officials.
The $53 million in NOAA Fisheries funding earmarked for Louisiana, which is to be distributed through the Gulf States Marine Fisheries Commission, is part of $128 million in assistance being directed to the northern Gulf of Mexico.
Representatives of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, the Louisiana Fishing Community Recovery Coalition, the Louisiana Recovery Authority, the Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board, the LSU AgCenter and the Louisiana Sea Grant College Program will meet at 1 p.m. Aug. 30 at the state Department of Wildlife and Fisheries headquarters at 2000 Quail Drive in Baton Rouge to plan how the funds will be used.
Congress appropriated the funding to NOAA Fisheries for reseeding, rehabilitation and restoration of oyster reefs; rehabilitating oyster beds and shrimp grounds; and cooperative research to monitor the recovery of Gulf fisheries. NOAA Fisheries arranged for funding distribution through the Gulf States Marine Fisheries Commission to Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas.
Each state developed proposals for funding use within its jurisdiction, and the Fisheries Commission submitted a regional cooperative agreement request to NOAA Fisheries in July. Once approved, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries will be responsible for fund distribution and accountability for Louisiana.
The effort to bring the state’s fisheries issues to Washington was a unified approach involving the Louisiana Office of the Governor, the state Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, the Louisiana Fishing Community Recovery Coalition, the Louisiana Recovery Authority, the Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board, the LSU AgCenter, the Louisiana Sea Grant College Program and the state’s congressional delegation.
The LSU AgCenter and the LSU College of Agriculture