Pappas Leads Bipartisan Call For Support for New Hampshire’s Seacoast

February 11, 2021 by TWN Staff
Boats gather along the North Carolina coast. (Photo via Pixabay)

WASHINGTON – Rep. Chris Pappas, D-N.H., led a group of 10 lawmakers this week in a bipartisan call for $100 million in funding for the National Sea Grant College Program in the next COVID relief package.

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, coastal communities, and in particular, the marine and aquaculture industries, have experienced severe negative economic impacts due to decreases in exports and sales to restaurants, Pappas ad his colleagues said in a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy.

They pointed out that local Sea Grant programs have been instrumental in supporting these communities. For example, they said, New Hampshire Sea Grant has been able to leverage their funding and expertise to provide fisheries with additional information to help sustain their businesses, assist business owners in tourism and other coastal-dependent industries, and collaborate with local leaders to make better informed decisions for struggling communities.

“Across the country, Sea Grant programs have played an instrumental role in supporting our coastal communities and fisheries who have been disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Pappas said.

“Here in New Hampshire, Sea Grant’s efforts allowed many growers to stay afloat by utilizing their oysters for research and habitat restoration while infusing more than $75,000 in relief funds to local growers who were unable to sell their goods at the markets. Our coastal communities have a long road ahead of them to full economic recovery, and I am proud to lead this bipartisan call to increase funding for National Sea Grant programs across our country,” he added.

Joining him in signing the letter were Reps. Peter DeFazio, D-Ore.; Anne McLane Kuster, D-Mass.; Don Young, R-Alaska; David Cicilline, D-Calif., Jennifer Gonzalez-Colon, R-P.R.; Peter Welch, D-Vt.; and Gerald Connolly, D-Vt.

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