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Nearly $1.5 Million for Island Institute Secured by Senator Collins

Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senator Susan Collins, Vice Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced that she secured $1,477,000 in Congressionally Directed Spending for the Island Institute in the Fiscal Year (FY) 2024 Financial Services and General Government appropriations bill.  Congress has passed the bill, and the President has signed it into law.

“The lobster industry has significantly impacted Maine’s economy and cultural identity for hundreds of years,” said Senator Collins.  “As Vice Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, I worked hard to secure this funding, which will support the Island Institute’s efforts to improve the economic resilience of Maine’s lobster industry and communities along coastal towns from Damariscotta to Eastport.”

“We are extremely grateful for Senator Collins’ determination and leadership in fighting on behalf of Maine’s lobstering families at a critical time for the industry,” said Kimberly A. Hamilton, President, Island Institute.  “We know first-hand that our coastal and island communities depend on jobs created in the lobster industry.  This project aims to build business resilience and entrepreneurship, support income diversification, and help people develop new skills to adapt to changes in the industry.  In turn, those communities most dependent on the lobster industry today will build a sustainable economic pathway for their future.”

This project will support the Island Institute's work to strengthen economic resilience among the most vulnerable lobstering communities along the Maine coast by providing financial education, income diversification training, and business skill development for Maine lobstermen.

This funding is part of the 231 targeted investments Senator Collins secured through the FY2024 appropriations process, driving more than $577 million to the state for projects throughout each of Maine’s 16 counties.

In 2021, Congress reinstituted Congressionally Directed Spending. Following this decision, Senator Collins secured more than $500 million for hundreds of Maine projects for FY2022 and FY2023.  As Vice Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Senator Collins is committed to championingtargeted investments that willbenefit Maine communities.