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U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $1.5 Million to Support Maine’s Commercial Fishing and Aquaculture Sector


WASHINGTON – U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross today announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $1.5 million grant to the University of Maine-Orono to make infrastructure improvements and increase the availability of business incubator space at the Darling Marine Center. The Center provides critical research in support of Maine’s commercial fishing and aquiculture economy.

“The University of Maine-Orono plays an important role in helping to sustain the state’s commercial fishing and aquaculture sector,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “This project will help provide the Darling Marine Center with the infrastructure they require to continue supporting regional businesses and the local population.”

“This grant comes at a critical time as the University of Maine System works to modernize our infrastructure and invest in the marine sciences to fuel innovation and growth in the Maine economy,” said Governor LePage. “We are thankful that Secretary Ross and the EDA recognize that Maine is poised to lead the nation in innovation for commercial fishing and aquaculture.”

The project will help the Darling Marine Center demolish and replace their deteriorated pier, renovate the Flowing Seawater Laboratory, upgrade the flowing seawater system, and add three new business incubation laboratory spaces. The improvements will ensure the continuing availability of marine environmental and ecosystem data essential to the management of Maine’s coastal fisheries, and the long-term health as well as sustainability of the commercial fishing economy.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.