Alaska fishing groups oppose CFEC reorg

Following an April 4 hearing that drew unanimous opposition from fishing groups, the House Resources Committee held a bill that would make statutory changes to the Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission.

The bill is a relatively simple administrative fix, but sits in a tangle created by an administrative order by Gov. Bill Walker that has attracted criticism over its legality, a legislative audit of the agency, and opposition from fishermen.

Rep. Louise Stutes, R-Kodiak, introduced the bill, but drastically scaled down the original version introduced last year to simply meet the needs of a 2015 legislative audit recommending some of the changes directed by Walker’s order.

Now, the bill’s main elements address administrative fixes: moving the CFEC commissioners to part-time pay and changing CFEC employees’ statutory designations.

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About the author

Jessica Hathaway

Jessica Hathaway is the editor in chief of National Fisherman. She has been covering the fishing industry for 13 years, serves on the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute’s Communications Committee and is a National Fisheries Conservation Center board member.

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