Pembroke: Officials Want State to Fine Brockton for Herring Loss

Massachusetts has a ban on taking herring enforced with a fine of $50 per fish. In October, the Massachusetts Division of Marine fisheries estimated the number of herring killed in Silver Lake was 2,500 because the City of Brockton diverted them there from Pembroke’s Furnace Pond. Because Brockton has lowered the level of Silver Lake to feed its public water supply, the exit from the lake, the Jones River, no longer flows from there, preventing herring migration. So the fine for the loss of 2,500 herring would be $50, times 2,500 fish, equaling $125,000.

Chairman of Pembroke Selectmen, Bill Boulter, hopes the state will fine the city:

“The division of marine fisheries has been trying for years to get the same problem fixed and they just don’t want to fix it, they don’t want to spend the money,” said Boulter.

For years, Pembroke and other Silver Lake watershed towns have tried to get Brockton’s attention about the effects water diversion has had on them.


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About Charles Mathewson

Charles Mathewson worked in print journalism for more than two decades as a reporter and editor, and has won several regional and national awards. He resides in Plymouth where he writes fiction and paints, when not producing award-winning news as a reporter for WATD.