The Alaska Board of Fish kicked off their Statewide Finfish Meeting in Anchorage today with public testimony. As expected, many commented focused on King Salmon and Proposal 249, the recommendations from the King Salmon Task Force.
Here’s a sample of what was said, starting with Dwight Kramer, Task Force member…
Dwight Kramer: “I would suggest that the Board support Proposal 249, which sunsets after one season, or do nothing, rely on the current management plan and prudent in-season management and then re-visit this issue more thoroughly during cycle in 2014.
Elizabeth Chase: “Please value the fishermen that harvest this wonderful product. My name is Liz and I’m an East Side Set Netter.
Paul Dale: “My name is Paul Dale and my wife and I operate Snug Harbor Seafoods in Kenai. Kenai River in-river guides and associated businesses had revenues that plummeted 50 percent. East Side Set Netters had revenues that plummeted 97 percent. I think when and if we get around to talking about burden sharing I’d like us all to remember those ratios.”
As expected, there was some resistance to the Task Force recommendation of creating an OEG of around 13,000 fish, lower than the SEG of 15,000. Here are comments from the Mat-Valley and Cooper Landing Advisory Committees…
Jennifer Ehmann: “Our committee at first was opposed to this proposal, until one of our members made an amendment to maintain the bottom end of the new SEG at 15,000 King Salmon, rather than to create a lower OEG of 13,000. The AC comments from the Mat-Valley Fish and Game.
George Heim: “George Heim from Cooper Landing AC. We also were concerned about setting a date like July 21 for making decisions. That at any point where the runs were clearly not going to be what they needed to be, that action should be taken at that point.”
Meetings continue through March 24th.