Hearing set for changes to lobstering apprenticeship program

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AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) Lawmakers in Maine are set to consider a proposal to change the rules governing the state's apprenticeships for new lobster fishermen.

Republican Rep. Billy Bob Faulkingham of Winter Harbor has offered a proposal to allow new fishermen to complete the apprenticeship program by demonstrating proficiency as opposed to logging hours. The proposal's coming up for a public hearing before the marine resources committee on Tuesday.

Faulkingham's proposal would allow an apprentice to complete the program by bringing at least 4,000 pounds of lobster to land over a period of not less than two years.

He says it's a "better gauge of proficiency."

The committee is also scheduled to hold a hearing Tuesday on a proposal to tweak the state's rules about lobster fishing licenses for fishermen with medical conditions.