CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Because of Texas’ efforts to curb the spread of the coronavirus, the local economy has suffered and local fishing charters are trying to stay afloat.
Like so many other businesses in this tourist-driven area, the Port Aransas fishing charter business took a major hit thanks to the state shutdown.
“We only get four or five months to make money here on this island. And we were just coming into that season, and we didn’t know how it was going to end. We didn’t know if people were going to be afraid to come down here or really how we were going to be affected long term by the coronavirus,” said Deep Sea Headquarters General Manager Mac Owens.
His fishing charter lost 20-25 percent of an average year's revenue, Owens said.
“So we dived into our personal funds, our reserves, almost depleted the whole fund just to keep everyone here working," he said. "We are the second-largest employer in Port Aransas, and that is a lot of mouths to feed, and a lot of money gone. It got scary, absolutely."
Local fishing charters have now been allowed to get back on the water. However, there are some restrictions.
“Sanitizing stations throughout our property, social distancing markings inside the store and on the boats. Down the rails of our boats and our tour boats, we have 6-foot markings so we can keep the groups 6-feet apart,” said Owens.
Owens tells KRIS 6 News that they are getting into their busy season. Hotels, condos, and rental houses are booked for the remainder of the summer, and that is good news for Port Aransas and his business.