Summary of Board of Fish Actions

The summary of Board of Fish actions at the Statewide meeting this month are now posted online.

http://www.boards.adfg.state.ak.us/fishinfo/meetsum/2009-2010/statewide-finfish-2010.pdf

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Chitina Dipnet Fishery Remains A Personal Use Fishery

The Board of Fish first accepted the definition of “Subsistence way of Life” as it was defined in Proposal #200.  After that they deliberated as directed by the Court in reapplying the 8 subsistence criteria on Proposal #201.  After going through the criteria for determining a “Customary & Traditional finding” the board voted to retain the Chitina dipnet fishery as personal use. 

In other Board of Fish actions, the board opposed the implementation of statewide bag limits for sablefish, electric reels were made legal and provided a definition and weight limit of 15 pounds, Dungeness crab in District 2 was closed for the summer season and is now a winter fishery again. 

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Coast Guard host Marine Industry Day in Juneau Thursday 3/18/10

JUNEAU, Alaska — Personnel at Coast Guard Sector Juneau are hosting a Marine Industry Day Thursday at the Juneau Arts and Cultural Center from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. to discuss with industry partners about vessel inspection requirements, commercial fishing vessel examinations, uninspected passenger vessel examinations and other maritime topics.  

Industry Day is designed to provide a forum for members of the marine industry to interact and discuss various issues with personnel from the Coast Guard.  The event is open to the general public but is geared especially to commercial vessel operators and waterfront facility representatives. 

“I encourage all our industry partners, especially smaller operators, to attend this event,” said Lt. Cmdr. Vivianne Louie, chief of Prevention at Sector Juneau.  “We really look forward to this event because it will provide us with a fantastic opportunity to establish stronger relationships with our maritime partners through face to face interaction”. 

Morning presentations will include an overview of Sector Juneau organization and functions, as well as an introduction to program managers and subject matter experts.  An open session in the afternoon will give industry members the opportunity to engage in informal discussions on topics mentioned above as well as  variety of topics including marine casualty reporting, Maritime Transportation Security Act regulations and pollution response procedures. 

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Governor Nominates Duncan Fields & James Hubbard for NPFMC

     March 15, 2010, Juneau, Alaska – Governor Sean Parnell forwarded his nominations of Duncan Fields of Kodiak and James Hubbard of Seward for consideration by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce for seats on the North Pacific Fishery Management Council (NPFMC). The governor also forwarded Sam Cotten of Eagle River and Matt Moir of Kodiak as alternate nominees.
     “I have confidence that these nominees will serve with the best interest of Alaska’s resources, coastal communities and Alaskans at heart,” said Governor Parnell. “Continuing our tradition of sound fisheries management is essential to protecting Alaska jobs and families who rely on these resources.” 
     The North Pacific Fishery Management Council is one of eight regional councils established by the 1976 Magnuson Fishery Conservation and Management Act, later renamed the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, to oversee management of the nation’s marine fisheries. The council has jurisdiction over 900,000 square miles of ocean from three to 200 miles off Alaska’s shores, and the primary responsibility for managing pollock, cod, halibut, sole and other groundfish.
     Duncan Fields, of Kodiak, is completing his first term on the NPFMC. He has been an active fisherman since 1960 and also serves as a technical advisor for the Gulf of Alaska Coastal Communities Coalition (GOAC3), the vice president of natural resource and community development for Old Harbor Native Corporation, and a natural resource consultant for Shoreside Consulting. He served on NPFMC Advisory Panel from 2001–2007, and is a member of the Board of Directors of the United Fishermen of Alaska. He earned a bachelor’s degree with a comprehensive social science major from Cedarville College, and a juris doctorate from the University of Oregon School of Law.
     James Hubbard, of Seward, has been a fisherman since the 1970s and participates in the halibut, sablefish, Pacific cod, and other groundfish fisheries throughout the entire Gulf of Alaska. With his wife, Rhonda, he is a co-owner of J&R Fisheries, which markets the seafood products caught and processed aboard his freezer-longliner, the F/V Kruzof. He currently serves on the Research Advisory Board to the International Pacific Halibut Commission. Hubbard is also a member of the United Fishermen of Alaska and several other commercial fishing organizations.
     Sam Cotten, of Eagle River, is completing his first term on the NPFMC. He is a resource analyst for the Aleutians East Borough and has significant experience in Alaska as a sport fisherman and commercial fisherman. Cotten is a former director of the Commercial Fishing and Agriculture Bank, and a former member of the Alaska State Legislature.
     Matthew Moir, of Kodiak, is the general manager of Alaska Pacific Seafoods, where he has worked since 1987. He is a current member of the NPFMC Advisory Panel. Moir is also a member of the Alaska Fishery Development Foundation, the Kodiak Fishery Advisory Committee, the Kodiak Island Borough Fisheries and Oceanic Research Board, and is an advisor to the Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission. He earned a bachelor’s degree in natural science from St. John’s University and a master’s degree in food technology from the University of Alaska Fairbanks.
     The Magnuson-Stevens Act requires governors of specific coastal states to provide nominations for each vacancy, from which the Secretary of Commerce makes a final appointment.

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House Fisheries Committee

House Fisheries Committee will be meeting Tuesday March 16, 2010 in Barnes room 124 and hearing the following three bill plus any bills previous heard and held.

HB 365 – Processors records for federal buyback programs http://www.legis.state.ak.us/basis/get_complete_bill.asp?session=26&bill=HB365

HB 389 – Commercial Fishing Loan Act http://www.legis.state.ak.us/basis/get_complete_bill.asp?session=26&bill=HB389

HB 246 – Sport Fish Guide Licenses http://www.legis.state.ak.us/basis/get_complete_bill.asp?session=26&bill=HB246

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RPT Meeting Announcement

SOUTHERN, NORTHERN, & JOINT SOUTHEAST 

REGIONAL PLANNING TEAM MEETING & WORKSHOP 

Tuesday, April 6, 2010 (9:00 a.m.) and  Wednesday, April 7, 2010 (9:00 a.m.) 

NSRAA Board Room 1308 Sawmill Creek Road, Sitka, Alaska 99835 

Juneau. . .The Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G), announces the Joint, Northern, and Southern Southeast Regional Planning Teams Spring 2010 meeting will be held at the above time and place. Tuesday, April 6 a workshop to discuss the development of a long-term solution to address allocation imbalances within the current allocation management plan will be held. These meetings will be open to the public. The Regional Planning Teams consist of representatives of salmon fishing gear groups and regional ADF&G representatives. The Planning Teams were established by the Commissioner of ADF&G for the purpose of development and amendment of comprehensive salmon plans; making recommendations concerning private non-profit hatchery permit alteration requests (PARs); and the allocation of enhanced fish throughout Southeast. 

The RPT will vote on PARs submitted by: 1) Southern Southeast Regional Aquaculture Association to; a) allow Whitman Lake Hatchery to collect Chinook salmon eggs for POWHA, b) allow Whitman Lake Hatchery to collect coho eggs for Neets Bay Hatchery, c) change permit accounting to allow Neets Bay Hatchery to collect chum salmon eggs for Whitman Lake Hatchery, d) establish a permitted capacity of chum salmon eggs at Burnett Inlet Hatchery, e) allow Neets Bay Hatchery to collect chum salmon eggs for Burnett Inlet Hatchery, 2) Prince of Wales Hatchery Association to; a) change broodstock of the Coffman Cove project from Unuk River Chinook stock to Chickamin River Chinook stock, b) increase permitted capacity of  Klawock Hatchery from 5M green coho eggs to 6M green coho eggs, 3) Northern Southeast Regional Aquaculture Association to; a) increase permitted capacity of Hidden Falls Hatchery from 6.1M green coho eggs to 6.9M green coho eggs, b) increase permitted capacity of Hidden Falls Hatchery from 91M green chum eggs to 136M green chum eggs, 4) Douglas Island Pink and Chum inc. to; increase permitted capacity of Macaulay Salmon Hatchery from 121M green chum eggs to 125M green chum eggs, 5) Armstrong Keta Inc. to; a) change the permitted capacity from 85M green pink salmon eggs and 30M green chum eggs to a combined permitted capacity of 115M combined pink and chum eggs with no more than 50M being chum eggs and no more than 85M being pink eggs, b) allow collection of an additional 50M green chum eggs for other hatcheries. The Joint Southeast Regional Planning Team will make a recommendation to the commissioner regarding the review of the final 2008 enhancement allocation numbers and the preliminary 2009 enhancement numbers for Southeast Alaska. The RPT will discuss Sheldon Jackson Hatchery chum salmon monitoring and possibly additional hatchery topics. 

PDF copies of PARs can be found at http://www.cf.adfg.state.ak.us/geninfo/enhance/enhance.php

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EPA Vessel Discharge Draft Report Released

EPA has released the draft report on vessel discharges (including fishing vessels).  Fishing vessels and some others were exempted from the new Vessel Discharge Permit requirements for two years while a study by the EPA was conducted.  Comments on the draft report will be accepted through April 7, 2010.

http://frwebgate3.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/PDFgate.cgi?WAISdocID=09150632391+0+2+0&WAISaction=retrieve Federal Register notice for comments

http://cfpub.epa.gov/npdes/vessels/reportcongress.cfm Page with draft report and/ or summary

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Last Day to Comment on DOT Proposed Rule

Today, March 5th is the last day to comment on the DOT proposed rule 17 AAC 25.210 and 17 AAC 25.220 which proposes to be changed to exempt in certain circumstances persons holding commerical fishing licenses, sport fishing operator licenses, or sport fishing guide licenses from commercial vehicle safety and hours of service regulations.

http://www.dot.state.ak.us/mscve/main.cfm?go=director Link to Proposed Rule

SEAFA Testimony

 

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Deep Inlet Rotational Schedule

     The following information is my understanding of the motion just passed at the NSRAA board meeting.

     The NSRAA Board has made some changes to the way the Deep Inlet rotation schedule will be conducted.    Rather than try to conduct cost recovery throughout the season, Deep Inlet THA will be closed when the chum runs builds in strength in August, closed until cost recovery is reached and then re-opened.  Staff will attempt to close the fishery following gillnet days and after cost recovery is done the troll fleet will get two days in the terminal harvest area followed by 2 seine days and then 2 days and thereafter it will be two seine/two gillnet continuously.

     Between June 21st and August 8th the Deep Inlet rotation will be Seine on Sundays, Thursday and Fridays; Gillnet on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday and Saturdays;  Troll on Saturday. 

     After August 8th the schedule will be 2 seine days followed by 2 gillnet days until closed for cost recovery.

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Field Hearing to be Conducted on Sealaska Land Bill

Senator Murkowski is holding field hearings that will be recorded and transcribed for Senate Energy  Natural Resources Committee on the Sealaska Lands Bill on S. 188.

The hearings will be held in the following communities:

3/8/10  6:30 pm  Craig School Auditorium

3/9/10  12:00 pm  Thorne Bay City Council Chambers

3/10/10  5:30 pm  Naukati School

3/11/10  12:30 pm Port Protection Community Building

3/11/10  7:00 pm Petersburg City Council Chambers

3/12/10  7:00 pm Sitka Centennial Building

Senator Murkowski’s website regarding Sealaska Lands Bill http://murkowski.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=SealaskaLandBill

Sealaska website for Lands bill legislation http://www.sealaska.com/page/our_lands.html

Sealaska Land Bill link to legislation http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/thomas

 

Residents can also submit comments on the bill to: Chuck Kleeschulte, Professional Staff, Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, SD 316, Washington, DC 20510.

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