The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources’ Marine Resources Division announced this week that it is currently accepting applications for its CARES Act relief program for fishery-related businesses.
The program was established to provide financial relief for losses suffered by the state’s marine fishing industry due to the COVID-19 pandemic. For more information about the program, visit this website.
Congress awarded $3.2 million of CARES Act money to the state of Alabama to address financial losses caused by the pandemic that occurred in the state’s seafood industry between March 1 and May 31, 2020.
To qualify, fishery-related businesses must have experienced revenue losses greater than 35 percent between the dates listed above. The 35 percent revenue loss is compared to the average revenue earned between March 1 and May 31 in the preceding five years of 2015-2019.
Only Alabama residents and tribal members that are licensed as saltwater commercial fishermen — those that possess licenses for fishing, taking/catching of oysters, taking/carrying shrimp, gill net fishing, and “crab catching” — seafood or oyster aquaculture operators, non-retail seafood dealers or processors, live-bait dealers and for-hire vessel owners-operators are eligible to participate in the program.
Qualifying individuals and businesses must be able to substantiate their income reduction and complete the application process to be eligible for loss reimbursement. Alabama residents who participate in eligible fisheries in other states as non-resident licensees may also be eligible to participate in Alabama’s program.
Completed applications and supporting documentation can be mailed, shipped or hand delivered to the MRD office in Gulf Shores, Alabama, located at 999 Commerce Drive.
The applications must be postmarked no later than Friday, Oct. 30, 2020. Completed applications can also be hand-delivered by 5 p.m. that day. Electronic copies including email will not be accepted. For more information about the program, including FAQs and the application form, visit outdooralabama.com/CARES-ACT.
Learn more about the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources by visiting outdooralabama.com.
The coronavirus crisis and the economic shutdowns and business limitations to combat the spread of the coronavirus has been devastating to the American economy. At least 28 million Americans are still receiving unemployment benefits and the S&P 500 index closed on Wednesday at 3,236.9, which is still down 4.4 percent from its February peak of 3,386.
At least 982,513 people, including 206,598 Americans, have died from COVID-19 and more than 32 million people globally have been diagnosed with the coronavirus including 7,140,137 Americans.