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Cortez’s Coast Guard unit isn’t being paid during shutdown. Here’s how you can help

Members of the U.S. Coast Guard missed their first paycheck due to a partial shutdown of the federal government Tuesday, but the local community is banding together to support servicemen in their time of need.

In a Facebook post that skyrocketed in popularity Saturday afternoon, Star Fish Company Market & Restaurant, 12306 46th Ave. W., announced a donation drive to accept gift cards on the behalf of the Cortez Coast Guard unit.

“During the government shutdown, our local Coast Guard unit in Cortez continues to work without pay. In an effort to support them, A.P. Bell Fish Co., Star Fish Co. and Tide Tables will be collecting gas and grocery store gift cards at each of our locations,” the post said.

By Saturday evening, the post had been liked more than 500 times and shared nearly 200 times.

The donations will be passed along to Station Cortez crew members. According to the Department of Interior’s gift guidelines, federal workers may accept gift cards valued at $20 or less per occasion and a maximum of $50 a calendar year.

For more information, call Star Fish Co. at (941) 794-1249.

Donation locations:

  • Star Fish Co. Market & Restaurant, 12306 46th Ave. W., Cortez
  • A.P. Fish Bell Co., 4600 124th St. W., Cortez
  • Tide Tables Restaurant & Marina, 12507 Cortez Road W., Cortez
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