BOSTON (AP) — Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley plans to sue federal fishing regulators to block new rules New England fishermen say will kill the local industry.
Coakley is planning a news conference for Thursday afternoon to announce the suit against the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
The suit comes weeks after massive new cuts in catch limits for bottom-dwelling fish went into effect May 1. The worst of the cuts is a 78 percent year-to-year reduction in the catch of Gulf of Maine cod.
The AG's suit alleges federal regulators ignored the devastating regional impacts of the cuts and used flawed science to enact overly-restrictive rules.
Regulators say the science is sound and clearly indicates key groundfish populations are weak. They say deep cuts are needed to help fish species rebound.