South Jersey fishing ports escape brunt of storm, but fleet damage extensive up north

New Jersey’s commercial fishing industry is asking the federal government to declare a “fisheries disaster” from Hurricane Sandy that could lead to aid to rebuild. The Garden State Seafood Association, a trade group based in Cape May, has asked Gov. Chris Christie to seek the declaration from the U.S. Secretary of Commerce to make the declaration. The U.S. Department of Commerce oversees the National Marine Fisheries Service. Ernie Panecek, who runs the Viking Village docks in Barnegat Light, said they only suffered minimal damage but none of the smaller boats has been out fishing for days. One larger boat that weathered the storm in New Bedford is due in today.

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