The latest Cook Inlet salmon war is brewing not over allocation but location -- the setting for an Alaska Board of Fisheries meeting scheduled for February 2017.
The board is expected to pick the venue for the Upper Cook Inlet finfish meeting next Tuesday during a meeting underway now in Anchorage.
The board last year slated the Cook Inlet regulation-setting session for Anchorage. But members later opened the venue up for reconsideration.
Now, parties led by Gov. Bill Walker are pushing for a Kenai Peninsula meeting location in a move widely viewed as one friendly to commercial fishing interests based there. The state fish board decides Upper Cook Inlet salmon regulations every 3 years. At the last meeting in February 2014, the board limited the commercial drift gillnet fleet and sided with sport fishing guides and others hoping to get more salmon to Mat-Su rivers and streams.
Walker sent the board a letter backing the Kenai Peninsula location in October. He pointed out it will have been 18 years “since a meeting was held in the area where much of the fishing takes place" and promised to attend the opening session and proceedings as time allowed.
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