National Fisherman


The Alaska Salmon Alliance, a group that was formed by Cook Inlet processors to promote science-based fishery management in Cook Inlet, came to Homer for a workshop Friday to brainstorm ideas to improve the Cook Inlet fishery, the fourth in a series between Palmer and Homer.
 
ASA has taken a collaborative and inclusive approach to problem-solving in Cook Inlet with the basic assumption that there are enough fish for all user groups if they are managed properly, and expressed dismay at the scorched-earth approach taken by the newly formed Alaska Fisheries Conservation Alliance that seeks to eliminate an entire historical user group through a ballot initiative.
 
ASA recognizes that there are conflicts between user groups and stakeholders, but also says that those conflicts pose perhaps the biggest risk to long-term sustainability for Cook Inlet salmon fisheries.
 
The workshop in Homer was moderated by ASA staff member Hannah Harrison, education, outreach and development director, and attended by about 30 people, mostly commercial fishermen.
 
Harrison started off by explaining that all comments are anonymous when she writes up the white paper on the workshop, so participants should speak freely.
 
The group began by identifying some general points of consensus about Cook Inlet salmon that all user groups could agree on, mainly that they belong to everyone, and they should not be managed politically, what Harrison called “ballot box biology,” although it is obvious that not all user groups feel that way, hence the ballot initiative.
 
Read the full story at the Homer News>>

Inside the Industry

The following was released by the Maine Department of Marine Resources on Jan. 22:

The Maine Department of Marine Resources announced an emergency regulation that will support the continued rebuilding effort in Maine’s scallop fishery. The rule, effective January 23, 2016, will close the Muscle Ridge Area near South Thomaston and the Western Penobscot Bay Area.

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Louisiana’s Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, which governs commercial and recreational fishing in the state, got a new boss in January. Charlie Melancon, a former member of the U.S. House of Representatives and state legislator, was appointed to the job by the state’s new governor, John Bel Edwards.

Although much of his non-political work in the past has centered on the state’s sugar cane industry, Melancon said he is confident that other experience, including working closely with fishermen when in Congress, has prepared him well for this new challenge.

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