Application Deadline for the CARES Act II Fisheries Assistance Program October 1

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Commercial fishing provides an annual economic benefit of $ 25 million in County Dare. [Coastal Review Online photo]

The NC Marine Fisheries Division reminds those wishing to apply for assistance from the 2021 Consolidated Appropriation Act Fisheries Assistance Program (CARES II Act) to do so by October 1.

Financial assistance is available to qualifying commercial fishermen and marine aquaculture operators, seafood traders and processors, and for-hire operators who can document loss of income greater than 35% by 2020 compared to the previous five-year average due to COVID-19. .

North Carolina is expected to receive $ 4.5 million from CARES Act II to provide financial assistance through direct payments to fisheries-related stakeholder groups affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

This funding is in addition to the $ 5.4 million in fishing aid the state received from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act 2020 and distributed earlier this year.

Applicants for CARES II 2021 relief must complete the application, an affidavit, and provide supporting documentation that documents a loss of income greater than 35% from March 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020 compared to the average income for the same period the previous five years (from March 1 to December 31, 2015-2019). Eligible stakeholders who have received relief from 2020 Cares Act funding can apply for 2021 CARES Act II funding, but any support will be adjusted for the amount already received.

One goal of the CARES Act II program is to make participants whole; that is, putting them in the same financial situation as they would have been if COVID-19 had not occurred. NOAA Fisheries requires that aid monies received from the program do not cause a participant’s annual income (January to December 2020) to exceed their five-year average annual income (January to December 2015-2019).

This means that the combination of fishing aid with any other relief from the CARES Act (like the paycheck protection program, the Small Business Association loan, or unemployment benefits) plus their fishing income. and / or other income in 2020 cannot exceed their average annual income for the past five years, or at least one year for people in business for less than five years.

Applications and supporting documents should be delivered in person to the Division Headquarters office at 3441 Arendell St., Morehead City or mailed to the NC Marine Fisheries Division, CARES Act II Fisheries Relief Program, PO Box 769, Morehead City NC 28557. and supporting documents will not be accepted at other division offices.

In August, the division mailed application packages to eligible licensees, leases and permits. Application packages are available on the Division’s Economic Assistance Programs webpage or at the division offices for eligible stakeholders who are not approved by the division.

If you have any questions regarding this financial aid program, email [email protected] or call the division’s licensing and statistics office at 252-503-3091.

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