Lawmakers ask for relief for salmon fishermen

March 7, 2008 6:44:11 PM PST
Hard times ahead for Bay Area salmon fishermen, and what some want done now, to ease their pain sooner than later.

California's two U.S. senators are asking for immediate disaster relief for salmon fishermen.

This comes as federal regulators consider a state-wide ban on salmon fishing this season.

That's because, in part, the number of salmon migrating up the Sacramento River are expected to hit an all-time low.

Fishermen say they desperately need the money. They point to years of low numbers of salmon, and there was also a late start on the crab season after November's disastrous oil spill on the San Francisco Bay.

"I think it's a great idea that we get a little money. We would still prefer to fish, that's what we do," said Fisherman Bob Longstreth from Half Moon Bay.

Senators Feinstein and Boxer say the salmon season, this year, may be as bad as 2006, the worst on record.

They've joined 47 other members of congress from the west coast to ask for disaster funds for fishermen on the pacific coast and related businesses.