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NOAA News Releases 2003
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The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is awarding a grant of more than $1.2 million to the South Alabama Regional Planning Commission to assist in disaster relief for Alabama shrimpers. NOAA is an agency of the Commerce Department.

The funds from this grant will provide disaster relief to shrimpers along Alabama’s Gulf coast. In addition, the funds will provide ongoing input from the local shrimp fishery through the Alabama Shrimp Disaster Relief Grant Steering Committee and the South Alabama Regional Planning Commission. The commission provides communication, planning, policymaking, coordination, advocacy and technical assistance to its member governments and citizens of the three southern Alabama counties of Baldwin, Escambia and Mobile.

“We are constantly working to strengthen local and regional initiatives, such as the South Alabama Regional Planning Commission,” said retired Navy Vice Adm. Conrad C. Lautenbacher, Ph.D., under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA administrator. “These grants help to support the Alabama fishing industry and reinforce NOAA’s and the Bush Administration’s commitment to the fishing community.”

In fiscal year 2003, NOAA awarded more than 475 grants totaling $204.2 million to members of the academic, scientific and business communities to assist the agency in fulfilling its mission to study the Earth’s natural systems in order to predict environmental change, manage ocean resources, protect life and property, and provide decision makers with reliable scientific information. NOAA goals and programs reflect a commitment to these basic responsibilities of science and service to the nation for the past 33 years.

The Commerce Department’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and providing environmental stewardship of our nation’s coastal and marine resources. To learn more about NOAA, please visit

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NOAA Administrator Conrad C. Lautenbacher: