The April 8 opinion piece by Stosh Anderson, "Don Young seeks to unwind 'Alaska Model' for fisheries in Magnuson-Stevens Act," fails to represent the facts of the legislation I introduced to reauthorize the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA).
Finding good employees for remote site work is always a challenge in rural Alaska, aggravating enough to make some managers move everything to Anchorage. But full-time year-round work remains the ideal, and one agency is giving it another shot.
A federal fisheries agency office is reopening in Unalaska as soon as three enforcement officers are hired and trained, according to Kevin Heck, acting deputy special agent in charge in Anchorage.
BBRSDA board president Fritz Johnson announced today that Sue Aspelund is resigning her position as the association’s executive director effective May 15, 2015. Aspelund will continue as BBRSDA’s fiscal officer through the end of July in order to ensure a smooth transition as a new executive director is brought on board.
The board has formed a recruitment and hiring committee to begin the process of selecting an interim or permanent executive director.
The North Pacific Fishery Management Council will hold its second meeting of 2015 from April 8-14 at the Anchorage Hilton.
The council’s biggest agenda item will be final action on measures to reduce chinook and chum salmon bycatch in the Bering Sea pollock fishery. The alternatives, introduced for public review in December 2014, include both voluntary and regulatory controls to shorten seasons, provide incentives, and reduce bycatch caps.
A lot has changed in Alaska since commercial vessels began fishing for halibut off the coastline in 1888, but in almost 130 years, halibut has remained a staple of the state’s fishing economy and culture. Along with salmon and crab, no species of fish captures the Alaska imagination and fills Alaska pocketbooks more than halibut.
Legislation by Rep. Bryce Edgmon, D- Dillingham, to establish Alaska Wild Salmon Day annually on Aug. 10, is moving through the House, co-sponsored by Representatives Bob Herron, D-Bethel, and Mike Chenault, R-Nikiski.
Alaska Congressman Don Young has introduced a bill to reauthorize the Magnuson-Stevens Act, the nation’s primary law governing fishing in federal waters. It leaves fisheries managers some controversial wiggle room.
Previous versions of the law established eight regional councils and required them to set harvest limits based on science to end overfishing. The mechanism is known as the “Alaska Model” of fisheries management.
JUNEAU -- Gov. Bill Walker has made a second try at filling a vacant seat on the Alaska Board of Fisheries, this time picking the director of a Kenai Peninsula conservation group for a position traditionally held by members sympathetic to sportfishing interests.
This year marks 40 years since the passage of landmark Congressional legislation that fundamentally overhauled how the $90 billion U.S. commercial fisheries industry is managed. It established a unique public-private partnership in which the industry, working with scientists and both federal and local authorities, would regulate fishing according to agreed-upon scientific standards for environmental sustainability, even as the industry stretched to meet skyrocketing demand for seafood.
March 15: Today, the Presidential Task Force on Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) Fishing and Seafood Fraud, co-chaired by the Departments of Commerce and State, released its action plan. This plan articulates the aggressive steps that federal agencies will take both domestically and internationally to implement the recommendations the Task Force made in December 2014.
Gov. Bill Walker nominated Daniel Hull, a commercial fisherman from Cordova, to serve a second term on the North Pacific Fishery Management Council and named Andrew Mezirow, a sport fishing charter operator from Seward, to a second seat on the council.
The nominations, made Friday to the U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service, must be approved by the federal government.
JUNEAU -- Commercial fishermen who make their living in federal waters off Alaska are watching as Gov. Bill Walker prepares to announce a set of appointments to the board that manages the multibillion-dollar fishing industry in the North Pacific.
One of the principal roles of the North Pacific Fishery Management Council is overseeing the massive, Seattle-based factory fishing vessels that catch and process lower-value groundfish like pollock, mackerel and sole.
Federal fisheries managers are slated to take final action in early April on the incidental harvest of Chinook and chum salmon in the Bering Sea pollock fishery.
Also on the agenda for the April 6-13 meeting of the North Pacific Fishery Management Council in Anchorage are final action on Gulf of Alaska sablefish longline pots, an update on Gulf of Alaska and Bering Sea/Aleutian Islands salmon bycatch genetics, a discussion paper on Area 4A halibut retention in sablefish pots, and an initial review of observer coverage on small catcher processors.
The Alaska Board of Fisheries will meet next week (March 17-20) in Anchorage for the last meeting of the 2014-2015 Board cycle. Among issues for discussion are two proposals that may affect Bristol Bay fisheries.
Dozens of Alaska Natives poured into a state Supreme Court hearing to show support for subsistence users in a case involving former state Sen. Albert Kookesh, who was cited along with two others in 2009 for exceeding salmon harvest limits while subsistence fishing in Southeast Alaska.
The experimental fishery to determine the feasibility of a seine fishery for pollock in state waters has finished up with mixed results.
The Gulf of Alaska pollock workgroup held its final meeting last month to discuss adding a limited entry state pollock fishery to Alaska waters for both trawl and non-trawl vessels and go over the results of the experimental fishery.