Senator Cantwell casts a net for fishing advice

This is the culture of our state, this is about a way of life,” U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell told a packed house of about 30 Pacific County fishing/shellfish industry representatives Saturday in the Port of Ilwaco’s tiny boardroom. Noting that fishing in all its various forms is a pillar of the county’s economy, Washington’s third-term junior senator, a Democrat, said “we want to keep it that way.” She expects to win passage this spring of the “crab bill.” This will ensure Washington’s most lucrative fishery continues operating under the generally popular tri-state process, in which the three mainland West Coast states negotiate season details among themselves. Cantwell also noted that reauthorization of the far-reaching Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act is coming up soon, something that will benefit from local input. Meeting attendees peppered her with numerous suggestions and concerns, several of which go to the heart of industry survival. continue reading the story here 15:22