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Rising gas prices impacting charter boats, fishermen

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Posted at 12:26 AM, Mar 28, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-28 00:49:19-04

John Hargan wears many hats, one as a bartender at Riverside Cafe in St. Marks, and another as a fisherman.

"We just got great fishing," said Hargan.

As a recreational fisherman, Hargan says rising gas prices are keeping him closer to home

"Shorter trips out and a little bit more hanging out in the marina," said Hargan. "It's somewhere between $4.60 to $5.00 per gallon."

For those that rely on fishing for a living, they say the gas prices are starting to cut into their bottom line.

"Fuel service has kind of doubled in the past year, so fuel is normally our largest expense, it's our largest operating expense as fishing guides," said Hargan.

Captain Mike Mcnamara of St. Marks Outfitters says as of right now, fishing guides in the area are doing their best to not pass on fuel costs to their customers.

"It's hard to pass onto customers, but it will definitely have an affect on our bottom line, so it will definitely have an effect on our bottom line. We're a little price sensitive, but we do our best to-- we might have to eat fuel costs until it corrects," said Mcnamara.

Hargan adds that fishing seasons for fish like sheepshead, trout, and flounder are what helps drive people to the area, without fishing, St. Marks wouldn't have as much business.

"When people aren't going out on their boats, I have less traffic down here in St. Marks, and I have less traffic down at the marina which means less traffic here at riverside which we like to stay busy down here," said Hargan.