Good crab season boosts coastal economy

| Print |  Email
Articles - February 2010
Thursday, January 21, 2010
crab1
Crabbers on the Buck & Ann haul pots on the Coast.
PHOTO COURTESY OF JOHN CORBIN

Al Pazar has been a crab fisherman on the Oregon Coast since 1975 so it didn’t take him long to realize that the 2009-2010 season was going to be good. By noon on the first day of the fishery season in December his 50-foot boat, the Delma Ann, was fully loaded and headed to port. That boatload was followed by five more in quick succession and by the time Pazar and his three crew members came up for air they had caught 110,000 pounds of Dungeness crab, worth nearly $200,000.

“Our crewmen all had a good Christmas,” says Pazar. “Their kids got some nice presents under the tree.”

Oregon fishermen caught about 16 million pounds of Dungeness crabs in December. That’s 3 million pounds more than they caught in the entire eight-month season a year ago. Unseasonably calm seas allowed smaller boats to share in the bounty, and the crabs have been plentiful and meaty. Using a multiplier of two, the economic impact of the state’s Dungeness fishery in December alone was about $55 million, a welcome jolt for coastal towns from Astoria to Brookings.

“A lot of guys really needed this season,” says Pazar. His strong December ensures that the restaurant and seafood shop he runs with his wife Pam in Florence, the Krab Kettle, will be well stocked through the winter. He’ll also be able to invest in maintenance and new equipment for the boat he has operated since 1983.

Dean Fleck of Englund Marine Supply in Newport says he has been selling more depth sounders, rain pants and fishing boots this season than usual, and he’s hearing similar news throughout the business community. “The money the crab fishermen earn trickles its way through the entire economy around here,” he says.

John Corbin, who runs the 56-foot Buck & Ann and is part owner of the 78-foot Northern Endurance, says, “After this season you’ll see a lot of boat owners spending money at the gear stores and the shipyards. There’ll be a lot of guys doing home improvements and buying new pickup trucks.”

Corbin’s big purchase with his early Dungeness earnings was a natural-gas-powered generator for the next power outage on the Coast. As for Pazar, his money is going the same place it’s been going since his two kids began attending private colleges. “I don’t go out and buy new pickup trucks or take trips to Vegas,” he says. “I write tuition checks.”

BEN JACKLET
 

More Articles

Oregon needs a Grand Bargain energy plan

Linda Baker
Monday, June 22, 2015
0622-gastaxblogthumbBY LINDA BAKER

The Clean Fuels/gas tax trade off will go down in history as another disjointed, on-again off-again approach to city and state lawmaking.


Read more...

Reader Input: Road Work

March 2015
Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Oregon's roads are crumbling, and revenues from state and local gas taxes are not sufficient to pay for improvements. We asked readers if the private sector should help fund transportation maintenance and repairs. Research partner CFM Strategic Communications conducted the poll of 366 readers in February.

0315 input01 620px

 

Reader comments:

"I feel private enterprises are capable of operating at a higher efficiency than state government."

"This has been used in Oregon since the mid-1800s. It is not a new financing method. This form of financing may help Oregon close its infrastructure deficit by leveraging funds."


Read more...

Fueling Up for the Climb

July/August 2015
Friday, July 10, 2015
BY GREGG MORRIS

Rita Hansen aims to scale natural gas vehicle innovation.


Read more...

Staffing Challenge

July/August 2015
Monday, July 13, 2015
BY KIM MOORE

A conversation with Greg Lambert, president of Mid Oregon Personnel Services.


Read more...

Reader Input: Fair Play

May 2015
Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Former Governor John Kitzhaber's resignation in February prompted some soul searching in this state about ethical behavior in industry and government.


Read more...

Reader Input: Energy Overload

June 2015
Wednesday, July 15, 2015

We asked readers to weigh in on the fossil fuel-green energy equation.


Read more...

Wildcards

Guest Blog
Tuesday, July 28, 2015
China A SharesBY JASON NORRIS, CFA | OB GUEST BLOGGER

Uncertainty in Greece and China, along with potential interest rate hikes mean investors are looking at the market and nervously questioning where they should be invested.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS