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The State of Maine's
Working Waterfront Report

The State of Maine's Working Waterfront Report

With generous support from Ram Island Foundation and Maine Community Foundation donors, the Maine Coast Fishermen’s Association was able to spend six months, from April – September 2019, visiting communities along the coast to examine the current status of infrastructure along Maine's coast.
Our full report serves to update our collective knowledge and inform future steps for the protection and preservation of Maine’s working waterfront from the lens of the commercial fishing industry. Our research included one-on-one interviews, literary research, and feedback from a broad group of advisors. The interviews were conducted during a 6-month period, mostly with fishermen, but also with town staff, selectmen, and community members. The study focused on the communities of Portland, Harpswell, Boothbay Harbor, St. George, Surry, Stonington, Milbridge, Cutler, and Jonesport, but the fi ndings are applicable for all coastal communities in Maine. We hope that this short summary document can help further important
conversations about Maine’s working waterfront.



A working waterfront is a property that provides access to the water, such as a wharf, pier, or right of way. The term also pertains to marinas, boatyards and other marine related businesses. For this study, we focused on the definition specific to commercial fishing.

For Fishermen, a working waterfront includes all aspects of their daily business, including bait, fuel, ice, trucking, storage, maintenance and parking.

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