Molly Dischner, KDLG - Dillingham
The National Marine Fisheries Service today announced that it is implementing a new tracking program for seafood imports, meant to help combat illegal fishing and seafood fraud. Importers will have to track where fish was caught, the type of gear that was used and where it was landed.
Governor Bill Walker announced five nominations to the board of the Alaska Fish and Game on Tueeday. On the list again this year for a fish board seat is Robert Ruffner of Soldotna, who would replace Fritz Johnson, a commercial fisherman from Dillingham. If confirmed, it will be the first time the fish board would not have a member from Bristol Bay. Download Audio
Last April, ten of Alaska’s major salmon buyers asked to rejoin the sustainability label they dropped in 2012. Negotiations failed at first, but eventually the Alaska Salmon Processors Association – led by Silver Bay Seafoods – agreed to hand over the certificate to the Pacific Seafood Processors Association, which has finally occurred.
The state Legislature released 31 pre-filed bills today. That's the legislation submitted before lawmakers convene, that they plan to discuss – and possibly vote on – in the next several months.
Alaska’s credit rating dropped a notch Tuesday from AAA to AA+. During a press conference, Gov. Bill Walker says that isn’t likely have a short-term impact on the state using bonds to fund capital projects or other state spending in the future.
The Board of Fisheries’ new coastal change committee will hold its first meeting next month. The committee is helping the board develop some guidelines for how it deals with commercial fishing boundaries that change along with Alaska’s coastline. Download Audio
Tournament organizer Heath Day said the Alaska Fellowship of Christian Athletes organized the tournament to give teams from across Alaska a chance to play each other before the state tournament in region. Download Audio
While Alaska’s governor was unveiling his budget proposal on Dec. 9, the state Boards of Fisheries and Game were grappling with how to accommodate future budget cuts.
Among the 73 proposals before the state Board of Fisheries this week are several the address permit stacking for both set-netters and drift fishermen. In public testimony so far, fishermen have been divided on whether or not that would be a good thing for the fishery.
The Pebble Partnership has dropped many of its subpoenas to individuals and organizations it believes may have communicated with the Environmental Protection Agency regarding protections for the Bristol Bay watershed as part of Pebble’s lawsuit alleging the agency acted improperly. Download Audio
Next summer’s Bristol Bay sockeye run is estimated to number 46.5 million, with about a quarter of those fish headed for the Nushagak District.
The Alaska Department of Fish and Game estimates that next summer's sockeye run will number 46.5 million. That would leave room to harvest nearly 30 million, and would be the third above-average bay harvest in a row.
The state has a new director of commercial fisheries. Long-time Fish and Game employee Scott Kelley takes over Wednesday, replacing Jeff Regnart, who retired at the start of October.