The Pacific Groundfish Quota Program Workshop brought together nearly 200 people who had been involved in creating, implementing, or making a living under the program, to look at successes and failures in the past five years.

Most found the program had both, but criticism was harsh at the two-day workshop, held in Portland a few months before the Pacific Council begins the program’s first five-year review. The workshop was also known as Santa Rosa III, the third workshop of stakeholders looking at performance. The first in the series was held in Santa Rosa near the start of the IFQ program.

The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), who implemented the program in 2011, offered a scorecard of three successes and five “causes for concern” since the program began.

Others were more blunt.

“The non-whiting West Coast IFQ trawl fishery is an economic sinkhole,” said Mike Okoniewski of Pacific Seafood Group, addressing the economic impacts of the quota program to workshop participants on the last day.

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