L E T T E R T O T H E E D I T O R
Just One More Tax
I attended a meeting on the new plan to promote Maine lobster. Its just what we have now with the promotion council, "Nothing."
Only this time its going to cost us $500 bucks to start with and like the trap tag tax, it will never go up. We all remember that.
When I came in yesterday the boat price was $1.35 a lb. About 100 yards from the wharf there is a little lunch place and on their sign outside was their lobster special, "Lobster Roll and Fries - $16.95". The problem with the lobster business is that 4 or 5 people are handling the lobster before it gets to the consumer and now it has boiled down to this: $100 for a new lobster trap with rigging, 50 cents a pound for bait and $1.35 for lobsters. If anyone thinks that having fishermen paying another $500 to an advertising company is going to help that, then you must believe in the Easter bunny. Three million dollars in the ad business is like the three Stooges taking a pee off the Bangor bridge to turn the Penobscot River yellow. Its just one more tax, one more straw to break the camel's back.
The answer is that we have the largest and best lobster pond in the world at our disposal and it’s free. If we hauled one day per week until the market clears out, we could get a fair price for our catch.
The MLA Newsletter stated that the "Project Maine lobster promotion plan gets a positive reception from lobstermen." I would like the DMR and the LAC to send out a questionnaire to all lobster fishermen holding a license and see what the real opinion is. The MLA makes it sound like they speak for everybody, when in fact they speak for a very select few.
– Kitt Johnson, Winter Harbor