KRSA PLANNING SPORT TAKEOVER OF COOK INLET SALMON

The following article was written by Bob Tkacz and printed in the Laws for the SEA Vol 13, #15 April 30, 2007

     The heads of the Kenai River Sportfishing Association discussed plans to takeover the Cook Inlet salmon fisheries with a shift in harvest priorities that would limit the commercial catch to whatever remains after all other user groups, including tourists, catch their limits. The chairman of the committee that heard their testimony said he plans to bring Cook Inlet salmon allocation before the legislature next year.  “The public should have the first right to allocation for the fisheries they need. Your family, my family, people that live here should have the amount of fish they need for their own needs, and the tourists should. Then whatever is surplus to our needs could be commercially harvested,” said Bob Penney, maven of the Kenai Peninsula sport charter industry and a board member of KRSA.”That’s the way the fishery has got to be changed and it’s going to be coming down to see you in the next few years in some manner because the public is going to want to see that done,” Penney said at an April 24 hearing before the House Special Committee on Economic Trade and Tourism.“You talked a lot about the Cook Inlet area, but I think the comments could probably pertain statewide,” said Rep.Mark Neuman (R-Big Lake), chairman of the committee, in response to Penney’s comments.

     Despite the legislature’s long aversion to involving itself in fisheries allocation, Neuman, in his third year in the House, said he’s taking the plunge. “It is this chair’s intention to go back and look at quotas. Go back a little bit and look at  hearing. Referring to discussions “in different fishing communities and boards” on Cook Inlet allocation, Neuman added, “Next year this body needs to take a look at that too, at the legislative level and I think that would be appropriate. Forewarned.”     Penney, who helped organize the 1996 “Fairness In Salmon Harvest” (FISH) initiative petition said followingthe hearing that a proposal submitted to the Board of Fisheries for the coming winter’s Cook Inlet meeting cycle asks for a

     Penney, who helped organize the 1996  shift in harvest priorities there to put commercial fishing at the bottom of the list. “If the board doesn’t pass this, this is going to become a public issue in the next three to five years while I’m still on this earth. We’re going to see that take place and be put to a vote of the people in some way,” Penney said.Jim Marcotte, Fish Board executive director, said KRSA submitted 14 proposals, including one “that seeks to  limit the department’s emergency order authority on closing the windows.” April 10 was the deadline for submission ofproposals, which will be published for public review in May.  The legislative hearing was posted as a review of the economic value of sport fishing and began with calls from a string of KRSA board members and staff for a new, comprehensive state study on the value of charter fishing. Over the course of an hour it morphed into a push for reallocation of the Cook Inlet salmon harvest.Following the hearing Talkeetna charter fishing business operator Bob Meals acknowledged that the economic data is necessary to support his industry’s goal of reallocating the fishery. “It’s a proper reallocation of a resource that’s been misallocated for a number of years … That’s called the free market. That’s exactly the way it should be,” Meals said. After working in the charter business for 25 years, Meals said his operation has developed to the point where he can make a living working only during the summer fishing season.Wasilla fishing guide Bruce Knowles, who was also a sponsor of the FISH initiative, called for a new  classification that would eliminate the distinction between sport, subsistence and personal use. “The average Alaskan is called a sport fisherman. In reality they are consumptive users and they are beat about the head and shoulders because they go out there and harvest fish with a rod and reel,” Knowles said. “This way they have managed to say they don’t have to have those fish, they’re out there enjoying themselves,” Knowles added, without specifying who “they” are.

     Proposed for the 1996 general election ballot, the FISH initiative would have given users other than commercial harvesting a priority for five percent of statewide salmon harvests, but allowed the noncommercial users to take more than five percent in any given area as long as they stayed below the statewide cap. An Alaska Supreme Court decision that fish stocks could not be allocated by initiative petition knocked it off the ballot.

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Laws for the SEA Interview with Gov. Palin on Fisheries Issues

The following article by Bob Tkacz was in the Laws for the SEA Vol 13 #15 April 30, 2007 and was reprinted with his permission. 

 

THE PALIN INTERVIEW, 2007

YOUNG GOVERNOR STILL DEVELOPING FISHERIES POLICIES

Laws for the SEA interviewed Gov Sarah Palin on April 5. Over the course of almost 40 minutes the governor, then four months in office, indicated she is still developing many policies and initiatives. Fish and Game Commissioner Denby Lloyd and Deputy Chief of Staff Mike Nizich sat in on the interview in her office in Juneau.

Here’s what the governor had to say.

LFTS: WHAT’S YOUR PLAN FOR GULF OF ALASKA RATIONALIZATION?

PALIN: “I’m glad that we’ve been able to request the stay for more consideration to be given on gulf rats and the impacts because my understanding is there have been some adverse impacts on the communities with the idea of gulf rats, specifically job loss which hurts our communities, hurts our fishing families. I’m studying the impacts still and they’ll provide me with the information.

LFTS: DO YOU HAVE A FINAL GOAL AS OPPOSED TO THE SPECIFICS OF HOW TO GET THERE, OTHER THAN THROUGH THE COUNCIL PROCESS? WHAT WOULD BE THE FORM OF THAT NEW SYSTEM WHENEVER GULF OF ALASKA GROUNDFISH IS RATIONALIZED?

PALIN: “That council will be able to provide me information on what they’re finding, again in the way of impacts and I haven’t received that information yet, so, no.”

LFTS: WHAT IS YOUR TIMEFRAME?

PALIN: “It was an 18-month stay initially. I would anticipate when that time period is up we would have that information.” (Commissioner Denby Lloyd reminded the governor that the 18 month period related to the Bering Sea crab fishery and that she had written to the North Pacific Fisheries Management Council asking for a freeze on Gulf of Alaska groundfish rationalization at least until this October.)LFTS: DO YOU HAVE ANY PLANS FOR CHANGES TO THE CDQ SYSTEM?PALIN: “Denby and I were talking about that also and their impacts to Alaska. They’re fundamental. Do you mind if these guys chime in at any time also as it relates to administration’s policies as we’recrafting our policies?”

LFTS: IF YOU NEED HINTS GO AHEAD.

PALIN: “I don’t need any hints, but I want to make sure we’re all on the same page. For instance,  Denby just was able to be a participant in the North Pacific meetings over the last week. I wasn’t. Anything maybe that Denby has been able to learn I haven’t been privy to yet, here’s an opportunity to share with me today.”COMMISSIONER LLOYD: “CDQ’s themselves haven’t been on the agenda recently. As far as I’m concerned we don’t have any specific plans to change the CDQ program, but there were recent amendments considered in the Magnuson Act. We’re still trying to understand what those mean. We don’t have a plan laid out for particular changes.”

LFTS: DO YOU SUPPORT CDQS IN THE GULF OF ALASKA?

PALIN: “With some of these areas where CDQs have been a success, it makes sense to take those successes and plug those into other communities, other areas. Again, I’m still studying the impacts on it. Four months into office, before coming into office I didn’t work with CDQs so I would not have known what the impacts were or the significance or the adverse effects. That’s what I’m learning.”

LFTS: IT’S A TOUCHY SUBJECT IN THE GULF. IS THAT SOMETHING YOU WOULD CONSIDER? I DON’T WANT TO OVERSTATE WHAT YOU’RE CONSIDERING.

PALIN: “I’m going to consider what the successes have been in other parts of Alaska in terms of CDQ and see if those be plugged into other regions as the local communities may be requesting. It’s part of the broad administrative policy we’re crafting with fisheries.”

LFTS: WHAT IS ACCEPTABLE TO YOU ON A FEDERAL FISH FARMING BILL IN THE US ECONOMIC ZONE?

PALIN: “I have great concerns over the Bush administration’s fish farming bill that has recently surfaced. We just did a presser on that articulating what our concerns are. I certainly will hope that the federal government will listen to Alaskans on this. “It’s an issue that I also got to speak to also yesterday with the premier of British Columbia on this. We have our differences there with fish farms. It’s not just our federal government but it’s the Canadian government also that I will certainly hope will listen to Alaskans.”

LFTS: DID THE PREMIER GIVE YOU ANY INDICATION B.C. WOULD LISTEN? THE PROVINCE HAS NOT LISTENED TO THE LAST TWO GOVERNORS?

PALIN: “We agreed to disagree on whether fish farms are good or not good in our waters and we  don’t have to have a relationship that’s adversarial about it. He’s assured me that there’s strict enforcement of regulations that will allow that safety net around our waters essentially to make sure there aren’t the escapees. All those things we fear about fish farms being close to Alaska he’s assured me and I’ve told him that we have to trust that his government will have the strict enforcement of thoseprotective measures.”

LFTS: IS THE 12-MILE STATE WATERS EXCLUSION ZONE PROPOSED IN THE US FISH FARMING BILL SUFFICIENT?

PALIN: “We have concerns about the entire bill. If you want to talk to Denby about what some of  our advisors have expressed on that one, too.”LLOYD: “The 12-miles isn’t really sufficient because fish can swim 12 miles pretty quickly. The idea of spreading disease or crossbreeding genetics impacts, the 12 miles doesn’t provide us the protection we’re looking for.”

LFTS: YOU WOULD WANT A TOTAL STATE OPT-OUT PROVISION SUCH AS SEN. TED STEVENS IS SEEKING?

PALIN: “That would be our ideal.”

COMMISSIONER LLOYD MENTIONED IN A HEARING YESTERDAY THAT THERE HAD BEEN AMENDMENTS TO THE ADF&G DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES MEMORANDUM ON HABITAT PERMIT REVIEWS. HAVE YOU REACHED A DECISION ON WHERE THAT DIVISION WILL FIND A HOME IN YOUR ADMINISTRATION?

PALIN: “Commissioner (Tom) Irwin and Denby are still gathering information on that and will present that to me.”

LFTS: ANY IDEA WHEN YOU’LL HEAR FROM THEM?

PALIN: “No.”

LLOYD: “The governor hasn’t set a deadline for us yet. We’ve had one meeting already. We’re going to be doing some staff work over the next month or so and prepare some information for the governor’s consideration later this year.”

LFTS: YOUR OCTOBER 11, 2006 CAMPAIGN RELEASE ON FISHERIES ISSUES SAID YOU WOULD NOT SUPPORT THE USE OF MIXING ZONES IN WATERS WHERE FISH ARE USED FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION, YET YOUR ADMINISTRATION HAS TESTIFIED AGAINST THE BILL THAT WOULD REMOVE THE MURKOWSKI ADMINISTRATION REGULATIONS THAT BAN MIXING ZONES ONLY SALMON SPAWNING AREAS.

PALIN: “The bipartisan legislation that addresses this … There is support in this administration for regulations that are on the books now that do allow us a comfort level ensuring that we have some protections there. It’s another one of those issues, mixing zones and the habitat issue that you and I talked about, probably right after I got elected in one of our first interviews, about giving it time to study all the ramifications because these are very significant issues. Four months into office hasn’t been enough time for me to direct staff to be 100 percent opposed or 100 percent for the proposal to change that law.”

LFTS: BUT YOUR ADMINISTRATION IS ALREADY ON RECORD OPPOSING THE BILL.

PALIN: “Read my quote.”

FROM YOUR THE OCT. 11, 2006 RELEASE TITLED “PALIN SHOWS SUPPORT FOR ALASKA FISHERMAN: “Palin does not support the use of mixing zones in waters where there are fish used for human consumption. ‘The Murkowski administration developed regulations that changed the requirements for mixingzones,’ said Palin. ‘The proposal made by the current administration to allow seasonal discharges won’t work because Alaskans eat fish from our rivers and lakes all year.”PALIN: “Well, you know, that House Bill, it’s going through the process now. We’re giving input. I

 don’t know what the status is on that bill now. There’s still information being gathered on that issue that is being presented to me now and more will be presented in the future.”

LFTS: WHY ARE YOUR PEOPLE TESTIFYING AGAINST THE BILL IF YOU’RE STILL IN THE STUDY MODE?

PALIN: “Because there are protections there with existing mixing zone regulations that we’re comfortable with.”

LFTS: EVEN THOUGH THEY ARE MUCH LOWER FOR ANY OTHER SPECIES THAN SALMON?

PALIN: “We’re still deciding what the policy is going to be on that one.”

LFTS: THERE HAS BEEN A LOT OF DISCUSSION ABOUT THE PROCESS FOR COMMISSIONER LLOYD’S APPOINTMENT AND THE FACT THAT THE BOARDS OF FISH AND GAME ONLY NOMINATED ONE NAME FOR YOU TO APPOINT. THIS ISN’T THE FIRST TIME THAT A GOVERNOR HAS RECEIVED ONLY A SINGLE NAME, BUT DO YOU BEAR ANY RESPONSIBILITY FOR THAT?

PALIN: “What’s the controversy, that it’s Denby or that it was only one name?

SOME OF BOTH.

PALIN: “Let’s address the first controversy being Denby. He is my pick. I confirmed the name that  the board brought to me. I could go on and on the reasons why he’s the right person for Alaska for Fish & Game. “The second part of the controversy, you say, is only one name was brought forward? I didn’t tell the board to give me a name or a dozen names.”

LFTS: IT WAS PRETTY WELL KNOWN THAT DENBY WAS YOUR CHOICE FOR COMMISSIONER.

PALIN: “Obviously, or I wouldn’t have asked for him to serve as acting commissioner.”

LFTS: STATE LAW NOW SAYS THE JOINT BOARDS SUBMIT A LIST OF NOMINEES, WHICH LEGAL COUNSEL HAS SAID CAN CONSIST OF A SINGLE NAME. SHOULD IT BE CHANGED TO REQUIRE MORE THAN

  ONE NAME?PALIN: “I wouldn’t propose any kind of change in the law in the way it reads today. If the lawmakers want to change that’s their prerogative and we’ll see a proposed change if they feel that burden to do so. I think at the end of the day Alaskans are going to be extremely thankful for Denby accepting the position.”

LFTS: WHAT’S THE STATUS OF YOUR POLICY ADVISOR?

PALIN: “Interviewing people, taking resumes and still feeling folks out on their fit on this team.”

LFTS: WHEN DO YOU EXPECT TO HIRE SOMEONE?

PALIN: “Hopefully soon because we’re inundating Mike Nizich, and Denby, and others with so many fisheries issues. It will be helpful to have a third floor person to help take some of that burden off and help coordinate some of these efforts. I owe it to these gentlemen to do it soon.”

LFTS: ARE YOU TO THE POINT OF HAVING A SHORT LIST?

PALIN: “The final selection should be shortly, yes.”

LFTS: A MATTER OF DAYS OR WEEKS?

PALIN: “I don’t know because the logistics of a couple of the potential candidates still have to be worked out in terms of they being able to speak with their present employers and families. I don’t want to speak for the candidates.”

(LFTS; AS OF APRIL 27 THE POSITION HAD NOT BEEN FILLED.)

(Position has been filled by Cora Crome who starts work on May 9th. – SEAFA)

LFTS: TALKING TO LLOYD AND NIZICH BOTH, IT SOUNDS LIKE THIS PERSON WILL NOT BE THE POLICY HEAD, OR CZAR SORT OF POSITION. THEY WON’T BE THE POLICY HEAD FOR FISHERIES ISSUES.

PALIN: “They’re going to be working as a member of the team.”

LFTS: WILL THE POSITION HAVE POLICY POWERS/ WHAT WILL BE THE DUTIES OF THE POST?

PALIN: “Our fish and game commissioner will be the policy advisor, the big guru there, the czar.  This person will be assisting, having and appropriate and significant role on the team.”

LFTS: YOUR OCTOBER PAPER SAID YOU WOULD HAVE A ‘STRONG LEAD PERSON IN THE GOVERNORS’ S OFFICE ON FISHERIES AND OCEAN POLICY WHO WILL FOCUS ON THERE ISSUES.” THAT SOUNDS LIKE A CHANGE

PALIN: “Denby, he’s the policy advisor. That’s not inconsistent at all with any kind of campaign  promise. We’ve got him in Denby. We’ve got him also in Mike Nizich. A lot of help from Mike Tibbles, even on fisheries and our third floor fisheries person whom we’re speaking of now will be a part of that also.

LFTS: SO DENBY WILL BE YOUR CHIEF FISHERIES POLICY ADVISOR, FISHERIES COMMISSIONER AND CZAR?PALIN: “You can characterize Denby’s role as not only fish and came commissioner but also fisheries policy advisor to me.”

LLOYD: “Don’t call me czar, please, governor.”

LFTS: WHAT IS YOUR LONG TERM PLAN FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF FISH & GAME BUDGET. THE INDUSTRY ARGUMENT FOR A HIGHER BUDGET IS THAT IT TRANSLATES INTO MORE OPENINGS, MORE STATE AND LOCAL TAXES AND A MORE PROFITABLE PROFITABLE PRIVATE SECTOR. YOU’VE TREATED THEM PRETTY WELL THIS YEAR.

PALIN: “I tend to agree with that principle there that an upfront investment in our fish and wildlife  resources, in management of, results in a stronger economy here in Alaska. Some specifics in the budget that this go-round I wasn’t able to study as in depth as I want to be able to study for next go round will be salaries. I want to make sure we’re able to recruit and retain the biologists that we need here in the state. “You know, ultimately, as we make decisions based on biology, based on scientific data that we need in order to have a very trustworthy policy foundation here we have to make sure we have the best biologists in the world in Alaska. There’s no reason that we shouldn’t. “Fish and game resources are that important to me and this administration that I want to make sure we have the best managing our resources so salary is going to be an aspect of the budget that I want to pay close attention to.”

LFTS: IT SOUNDS LIKE THE DEPARTMENT CAN EXPECT YOU TO PROPOSE BUDGET INCREASES, WHETHER OR NOT THE LEGISLATURE GOES ALONG WITH THEM.

PALIN: “I’m not going to get out there and promise an increase in salary to persons without having  very, very good information in front of me, but I want to make sure we’re not losing our people to the feds, to the private sector also. We need the best managing our resources here.”

LFTS: ARE WE DOING THAT NOW? WE SEEM TO BE LOSING BIOLOGISTS?

PALIN: “We are losing them. We’re losing too many of them. That’s a red flag. We had to, of course,  roll out our budget 11 days after we were sworn in. That wasn’t enough time to study the salary issue with Fish & Game.”

LFTS: SO OVERALL THE DEPARTMENT CAN EXPECT BUDGET INCREASES RATHER THAN DECREASES?

PALIN: “I believe there will be a manifestation of our support for the tools needed by fish and game  personnel and the salaries required to recruit and retain the best in our department. There will be that manifestation in our next budget.”

LFTS: HOW ABOUT RESEARCH FUNDING? THE DEPARTMENT DOESN’T DO ANYTHING THAT COULD BE CALLED PURE RESEARCH AND A LOT

  OF PEOPLE SAY THAT’S NEEDED FOR EXPANSION INTO NEW SPECIES.PALIN: “We need to be better coordinators with our university system there and make sure that the  funding of our university is going toward the research in wildlife and fish management measures that we need here. “An aspect of future funding issues is better coordination with the university in their research. I can’t promise more money. What I can promise is, our mission here is to be more efficient in the way that we’re operating state government, all aspects of it, including research and monies going to the university where those dollars are ending up and I’d like to see better coordination there between an entity like the university receiving such a large amount of money and a department life Fish & Game that is so important to our economy and our culture.”

LFTS: ALMOST EVERY DAY A LAWMAKER MAKES A REFERENCE TO THE FACT THAT WE’RE GOING TO BE IN A DEFICIT SITUATION, PERHAPS BY FISCAL YEAR 2009. WHAT’S YOUR PLAN FOR DOING THE THINGS YOU’VE TALKED ABOUT TO SUFFICIENTLY FUND ADF&G AND ALL THE DEPARTMENTS UNTIL GAS PIPELINE REVENUES ARE AVAILABLE?

PALIN: “That’s why we’re so concerned about AGIA and getting the gasline project underway and  hopefully sticking with our timeline with AGIA so we can see fieldwork in the summer of ’08 and get going on it. Each year we delay is another one-point-something billion dollar delay to the State of Alaska. “As the lieutenant governor and I said right after being sworn in also in crafting that first budget, we have got to start living within our means here in Alaska. We have got to start prioritizing and priorities for me and for Sean Parnell, they’re pretty basic and pretty simple. It’s not a lot of frills it’s public safety, basic infrastructure, education. “As I’ve already expressed, my commitment to fish and game, here in Alaska, management for abundance there, not only for the good of our economy but for continuation of so many positive aspects of Alaska’s culture. Those are our priorities and working with the legislature through the budget process focusing on those four priorities and building the budget around those, that’s what our philosophy is going to be in the next four years.”

LFTS: SO IS IT YOUR PLAN TO CUT BUDGETS TO FIT REVENUE OR TO SEEK NEW REVENUES TO MEET YOUR PRIORITIES BETWEEN NOW AND GASLINE REVENUES?

PALIN: “Right now we’re very blessed. Today I think oil is $63 and some cents again. We have to  be fiscally conservative in our budgeting. We can’t be spending more than we’re bringing in. Right now we have a surplus. We’re going to sock away that surplus to the greatest degree possible that the legislature will let us cushion ourselves for when the price of oil drops again until the gasline comes on line.

LFTS: WILL SPORT FISHING HAVE TO PAY MORE TO SUPPORT ITSELF? IT SEEMS LIKE THE FISH & GAME FUND IS NOT LARGE ENOUGH ANY MORE TO SUPPORT THAT AND HUNTING AND TRAPPING FOR THAT MATTER?

PALIN: “I don’t want to have to raise hunting and fishing license fees. I’m probably going to get out there and feel the wrath of tourists when I say this but if we’re going to raise fees it’s going to be on nonresidents. It’s not going to be on the people who live here who rely on the personal use fisheries and hunting and Comfish also, it wouldn’t be on the residents of Alaska. “But that’s part, too, of the budget process that, in just a few months in office I haven’t been able to be privy to all the kind of information that would enable me to say yeah or nay to what kind of fees the state would be looking at in the future.” “Another thing that Sean Parnell and I did in the budget was come in and propose fees and taxes that are nuisances to Alaskans and get rid of them, the tire tax and the fees that were put in place by the prior administration, get rid of them and send a message that we want people doing business here, and those things that, in some respects cost government more than they do take in almost, we want to get rid of them. “When I look at fishing and hunting fees that will be a consideration.”

LFTS: NEITHER OF THE BILLS TO ELIMINATE TIRE TAXES OR CUT BUSINESS LICENSE FEES HAS BEEN ADVANCING. REP. BILL THOMAS FROM HAINES, SAID SEVERAL WEEKS AGO WHEN YOU WERE PROPOSING A $4 MILLION CUT TO THE FISH & GAME BUDGET, THAT HE WOULD OPPOSE THE BUSINESS LICENSE REDUCTION, WHICH COINCIDENTALLY IS PROJECTED TO CUT STATE REVENUES ABOUT $4 MILLION. THOMAS SAID EVEN THOUGH IT WAS A RELATIVELY SMALLAMOUNT OF INCOME WE ARE COMING TO THE POINT WHERE EVERY DOLLAR COUNTS.

PALIN: “It is a tiny bit of revenue, relatively speaking. We have a nearly an $8 billion budget here in  the State of Alaska and to give up, if you will, a sliver of that revenue to send that message that we want activity here in Alaska, we want revitalization of small business, we want to be able to help the Mom & Pops, I ‘m willing to give up that $4 million. I think it’s going to spur more activity. “Maybe we have a different way of thinking about government’s proper role. I think government’s proper role should be, in some sense, to get out of the way and let the private sector create opportunities. Don’t burden them with nuisance fees and those things that would stymie activity or stymie progress.

“That’s what I did in the city of Wasilla when I first came in. We came in there when I was first elected we got rid of personal property taxes. We got rid of business license renewal fees. We reduce real property tax levies. We did all these things that we could. I had a very cooperative city council, so that helped. It was a true team effort. It did spur activity. We sent the message that you don’t have to be in the town next door in big city Anchorage, come to our town and participate in this economy and it will grow and it did. We had tremendous economic indicators of success with that type of philosophy into the state of Alaska.”

LFTS: WHY DOESN’T EVERY DOLLAR COUNT?

PALIN: “Every dollar is going to count when we get into … well, every dollar counts anyway, but  today we have tremendous surplus right now. The sky isn’t falling today and it’s our opportunity right now to start living within our means and start being disciplined with our budget but to give up $4 million. I’m going to trust him that it’s a $4 million hit but out of nearly $8 billion that operates this state, I’d be willing to give that up to spur activity.” 

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Management Plans Available

The gillnet and spring troll management plans are available at ADFG offices or online.  The Seine management plan is not yet published.

Gillnet

http://www.cf.adfg.state.ak.us/region1/pdfs/salmon/rir_1j07_05_2007.pdf

Spring Troll

http://www.cf.adfg.state.ak.us/region1/pdfs/salmon/rir_1j07_06_07_spring_troll_mp.pdf

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Cora Crome Hired as Governor’s Fish Person

The Governor hired Cora Crome from Petersburg to become the fish person in the Governor’s office.  The official notice will come out when Cora formally starts work.  In the meantime Cora will be busy moving to Juneau.

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Alcohol Testing Strips Just Arrived

SEAFA will be sending out FREE to our members this years supply of alcohol testing strips.  We just received them and will be sending out 2 test strips for each boat.  If more is needed, please contact us.

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Bush’s Recovery Plan for Salmon Rejected

The ruling by a three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco upheld U.S. District Judge James Redden’s order requiring the dams to sacrifice power production to help juvenile salmon migrating to the ocean.

It also keeps open the possibility that Redden could order four dams on the lower Snake River in eastern Washington breached to restore salmon — a step he has said he would be willing to take

To read the full article published by the Seattle Times – click on the link below.

http://archives.seattletimes.nwsource.com/cgi-bin/texis.cgi/web/vortex/display?slug=salmondams10m&date=20070410&query=salmon+dams

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Pot Shrimp Survey Charter Bid Packets Available from ADFG

POT SHRIMP SURVEY CHARTER BID PACKETS AVAILABLE

Juneau. . . The Alaska Department of Fish and Game announced today that bid packets are available in

Douglas, Petersburg, Sitka, and Ketchikan offices to conduct a pot survey to assess stocks of spot and

coonstripe shrimp populations in Districts 3, 7, 12, and 13 of Southeast Alaska. Details of the survey

including a work summary, and minimum qualifications follow. Bid packets are due in the Douglas office

by 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday May 2, 2007. The contract will be awarded by May 15 to the lowest

qualifying bidder, after a 5 percent Alaska bidder’s preference is applied.

WORK SUMMARY

The primary purpose of this work is to obtain a pre-season index of abundance for spot shrimp in some

productive fishing areas in Districts 3, 7, 12, and 13 of Southeast Alaska. Survey work will be conducted

for 16 pulling days, in 4 areas with running time between areas, several crew swaps, and gear pickups and

drop offs before and after the survey. Six research sets of 10 longlined pots each will be pulled daily.

Except in District 7, an additional cost recovery/exploratory set of 10 longlined vessel pots may be made

daily, with a maximum of 4 per area. Pots will be set beginning the afternoon of Tuesday, September 4,

2007 and the final day of pulling pots for the trip will be Thursday, September 26. The vessel must be

capable of housing three ADF&G biologists in addition to the vessels minimum crew of 3. Because

shrimp captured will be retained for cost-recovery, the vessel must be capable of processing and freezing

shrimp onboard and the contractor must possess all of the licenses and certifications required to do so.

All marketable shrimp caught during the trip will be the property of the contractor however must be

recorded on the department’s gear card.

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS

The contractor must have commercial experience fishing for shrimp with pots in Southeast

Alaska as documented by fish ticket landings.

Vessel must be at least 50 ft in overall length and capable of processing and freezing shrimp.

Deck must have 50 square feet of sheltered area for shrimp sampling, and a sheltered marine

head.

Operational DGPS, 24-mile radar, color video sounder, and VHF are required.

The winning bidder may be required to make the vessel available for inspection in Juneau,

Ketchikan, Petersburg or Sitka between May 15 and May 30, 2007.

Pot shrimp charter bid packets page 2 of 2 April 10, 2007 The contractor will be responsible for all catching, processing, and marketing all shrimp caught

during the charter and must have all the appropriate licenses to do so.

The contractor will provide a minimum of three crew (skipper + 2 deckhands).

The contractor must have a letter certifying USCG inspection within the prior 12 months and all

U.S. Coast Guard required safety equipment.

The contractor will provide all bait. The baiting protocol for each pot is 1 pint chopped herring

and hanging bait of 1/3 a chum salmon, per pot.

The contractor will furnish all fuel, lubricants, and filters, and at least three meals per day for the

vessel crew and scientific staff.

The contractor will provide all gear for a longlined set of 10 shrimp pots of their choice for the

daily cost-recovery set.

The department will provide the survey pots, bait jars, and bait hangers, ground line marked at

10-fathom intervals, buoy-line, and numbered buoys during survey work.

The contractor will be responsible for setting and retrieving longlined shrimp pot gear.

Vessel must have bunk space for at least three ADF&G biologists and the vessel’s own minimum

required crew of three, including the vessel captain.

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2007 Commercial Troll Chinook Salmon Quotas

ALASKA DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND GAME

DIVISION OF COMMERCIAL FISHERIES

NEWS RELEASE

Denby S. Lloyd, Commissioner

John Hilsinger, Director

Contact: Petersburg Area Office

Brian Lynch P.O. Box 667

Petersburg, Alaska 99833

Phone: (907) 772-3801

Date: April 10, 2007

Fax: (907) 772-9336

Time: 9:00 a.m.

2007 COMMERCIAL TROLL CHINOOK SALMON QUOTAS

Petersburg. . . The Alaska Department of Fish and Game announced today that the commercial troll

fishery pre-season Chinook salmon harvest target for 2007 is 243,741 fish, which is 12,920 fewer than the

2006 target. The Southeast Alaska all-gear quota is 329,392 treaty Chinook, down from last year by

approximately 17,400 fish. The all-gear quota is allocated among commercial and sport fisheries

according to management plans established by the Alaska Board of Fisheries. The Chinook salmon quotas

specified by gear group are as follows:

Troll 243,741

Purse seine 14,164

Set and drift gillnet 10,552

Sport 60,935

Total all-gear quota 329,392

Trollers are advised that the catch allocations presented here do not include the majority of Stikine River

Chinook that may be harvested in commercial and sport fisheries in Districts 8. For more information on

this issue, please refer to the news release issued out of the Petersburg office on January 31, 2007.

The reduction in the all-gear quota and the troll allocation could result in reduced fishing time and harvest

opportunities for Chinook salmon in the summer troll fishery. However, because we don’t know what the

final harvest of non-Alaska hatchery fish (Treaty fish) will be in the winter and spring fisheries, the

magnitude of any reduced fishing time will not actually be known until just prior to the first summer

season Chinook salmon opening on July 1. The summer troll quota is calculated by subtracting the winter

and spring fishery Treaty Chinook harvest (there is no specific total limit on the number of Treaty

Chinook that may be harvested in the spring fishery) from the annual troll quota and 70% of the total

summer quota is targeted in the first summer Chinook opening. We anticipate at this time that the first

summer opening will be managed in season rather than for a fixed number of days.

Although the pre-season all-gear and troll Chinook salmon quotas are reduced from the past 4 years, the

2007 quotas are still larger than the quotas allowed from 1985 – 2001 and are very similar to the preseason

quota in 2002 and 2006.

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Waste Generated by Washington Fish Farms

The PR spin on fish farming continues. There was an article in the Bainbridge Island paper.
This is the basis for the amount of pollution that flushes from the salmon farms into Washington waters, which I sent to the reporter:

Arthur Whiteley, using information from the Dept. of Ecology, calculated that the 6 active salmon farms in our state released 4,919,739  lbs. of fish waste into Puget Sound waters in 2005. According to Whiteley, there are 8 licensed farms, and two of these (Site 1, Deepwater Bay and Fort Ward) were fallowed (not used) in the year 2005.  The 4,919,739 lbs of feces came from the farms owned by American Gold Seafoods, LLC.  These are : Clam Bay, Orchard Rocks, Site 2 Deepwater Bay, Site 3 Deepwater Bay, Site 4 Hope Island, Pt. Angeles,   The owners report that they used 7,986,590 kg of feed (17,570,498 lbs) in 2005:  28% of this is 4,919,739 lbs of feces.

Whiteley compares this to 4,009,900 lbs of Total Suspended Solids released by the Seattle West Point Treatment Plant, the facility that treats the sewage of 830,000 residents of Seattle. The Treatment Plant process includes settling, bacterial digestion, re-settling, chlorination to kill the bacteria, dechlorination and then release into Puget Sound.  The cost was $530,000,000 to build the treatment plant, and $80,000,000 a year to operate it, which are valid costs for us to pay to clean up and maintain our aquatic environment.

The six fish farms release 123% as much TTS into Puget Sound marine waters as does the treatment plant.  Whiteley says that “TSS” really should read “Total Solids”, because it includes both suspended solids and the bulk of the feces, which settle rapidly. This material is released untreated and unsterilized directly into Puget Sound. There is no cost to the company for this use of Puget Sound to absorb the pollution flushing from their open cage feedlots.

By Anne Mosness

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Ocean Ranching by Hatcheries is top agriculture Product in Alaska

Ocean Ranching of salmon by our hatcheries is considered largest agricultural industry in Alaska. Laine Welch in her weekly column wrote, “According to the annual report on Alaska’s salmon enhancement programs, nearly 1.5 billion baby salmon were released to the ocean last year, while 48 million returned to their home hatcheries.

Those fish accounted for about 20 percent of Alaska’s total salmon catch last year — and at nearly $59 million, 21 percent of the harvest value.”

http://community.adn.com/?q=adn/node/106424

 

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