Debate last week continued in the House Special Fisheries committee on House Bill 49, legislation that would create an endowment to fund Chinook salmon research throughout the state.
The intent of the bill is to create a source of long term funding for research identifying factors that are contributing to declines in king salmon abundance.
We spoke to Representative Paul Seaton of Homer who chairs the House special fisheries committee, who said that there were several concerns about the amount of overlap this would have with other funding for Chinook research that is being made available.
Seaton said that one of his concerns is ensuring that there will be specific and meaningful research funded by this legislation as opposed to random general knowledge gathering. Seaton said that it is essential that specific factors contributing to the decline of Chinook salmon runs be identified and studied.
The bill was held in committee last week.