From: Associated Press
Published June 10, 2005 12:00 AM

Massachusetts Governor Declares Red Tide a Disaster

BOSTON — Gov. Mitt Romney on Thursday declared a state of emergency because of the red tide bloom off the coast of Massachusetts, a move that allows the state to seek federal disaster aid for the shellfish industry.


Red tide is an algae that contaminates shellfish and can be dangerous to humans who eat the shellfish. It does not pose a risk to people who eat lobsters or finned fish.


The red tide that has advanced southward from Maine over the past two months is the worst in New England since 1972. This is the first time Massachusetts has declared a state of emergency because of red tide.


Romney said he is seeking aid from both the U.S. Small Business Administration and the Department of Labor for shellfisherman and others affected by the algae. He said he didn't know how long it would take to get a response but that the request is being expedited.


Red tide is costing the shellfish industry about $3 million per week, Romney said.


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Source: Associated Press


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