Fishery disasters declared for areas hit by hurricanes

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MIAMI (AP) Federal officials have declared catastrophic fishery disasters for areas affected by Hurricanes Irma and Maria last fall.

U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced the designations in a news release Friday.

The governors of Florida, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico had asked the Department of Commerce to determine whether a commercial fishery failure occurred because of storms making landfall last August and September. Officials concluded that it did.

Through these fishery disaster declarations, participants are eligible for Small Business Administration disaster loans. And because these fisheries are in areas where the president has declared a natural disaster, public fishery infrastructure-related losses are eligible for federal emergency money.

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