Because of Alaska’s budget crisis, state agencies cut spending this year and are planning additional reductions in the next few years. For the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, those cuts have meant less monitoring of fish runs, a change that will lead to more conservative management and less fishing opportunity.

Coming up this week, there are even more options on the table regarding Gulf of Alaska bycatch after the North Pacific Council met; we have a new director of the commercial fisheries division, and once again proof that you shouldn't mess with the Lacey Act. Help from KSKA's Ellen Lockyer AND Monica Gokey in Anchorage, and KDLG's Molly Dischner in Dillingham.

Scott Kelley is Alaska's new director of commercial fisheries as of Oct. 21, replacing Jeff Regnart, who retired at the start of October. Kelley has worked for the Department of Fish and Game for nearly 25 years, all of it in division of commercial fisheries and a since-merged research arm.

Kelley started his career with fish and game as a port sampler at Excursion Inlet, a major processing facility west of Juneau. Since then he’s held a variety of roles in Southeast Alaska, including working on stock assessments, as an area management biologist, and as a regional management coordinator.

NOAA Fisheries is developing an Agency-wide Ecosystem-based Fishery Management policy, which outlines a set of principles to guide our actions and decisions over the long-term. The draft policy goals and framework are informed by NOAA Fisheries’ own practices and experience from that of our partners. These ideas are intended to limit neither discussion nor consideration of other potential policy goals.

A commercial fishing trade organization is donating 300 pounds of sockeye salmon to the Kenai Senior Center.

The first 50 pounds of the donation from Alaska Salmon Alliance arrived at the center Wednesday, The Peninsula Clarion reports.

The salmon meal was originally suggested by Kenai senior Howard Hill, who secured the donation from the Salmon Alliance, said senior center director Rachael Craig.

NOAA Fisheries is seeking letters of public support through Oct. 23, for 10 people, including two incumbents, for two presidential appointments as U.S. commissioners to the International Pacific Halibut Commission.

Terms expire on Dec. 31 for current commissioners Don Lane of Homer and Bob Alverson, of Seattle.

The iconic Alaska chinook salmon has unequaled world-renown for big fish tales.

The largest fish on record, a 97-pounder pulled from the Kenai River in 1985, changed the focus of the Alaska fishing economy, bringing in waves of fish tourists and seeding the politically influential guided angler industry.

Since then, the chinook, or king, salmon across the state have been getting smaller, researchers have found.

Trolling for salmon is a big business for many fishermen in Southeast Alaska. But this summer was a bit unusual. More effort was put into catching Chum salmon than Coho and fishermen only had one shot at Kings.

After this summer’s one-and-only opening for king salmon, many Southeast commercial trollers have found something else to do, instead of fishing for coho or chums.

SeaShare, the Seattle-based non-profit dedicated to distribution of high quality seafood to food banks nationwide, has received a donation of 450,000 portions of oven ready pollock and hake from the At-Sea Processors Association.

SeaShare’s Mary Harmon said Aug. 25 that the APA rallied once again to generate its annual donation of the lightly breaded four-ounce portions.