UCI Commercial Fisherman and Sport fisherman agree in a weird way
In a letter dated 13 June 2011 Eldon Mulder, KRSA Board Chair, Reuben Hanke, KRSA Fisheries Chair, and Bruce Knowles, MSBRSC Chair requested that the Commissioner of ADF&G and the Board of Fisheries issue emergency regulations that changes the present regulations on the use of the 8 mile corridor for the UCI drift fleet. Their rationale is that the regulations passed by the Board where not what ADF&G, the AG office, or the Lt. Governor wrote, reviewed, or signed into law. They want a smaller corridor for a number of July periods.
In contrast, UCIDA sent a letter to the Commissioner asking that regulations written by ADF&G, reviewed by the AG office, and signed by the Lt. Governor were not correct relative to the Kasilof OEG and turn on point for the terminal fishery. They also noted that a 50,000 fish allocation in the Kenai River in-river goals was not passed by the Board for the mid-range run sizes to the Kenai River.
The State responded to the UCIDA letter and said they had reviewed the Board actions and they had the intent of the Board correct with the regulations.
In both of these cases the major user groups in UCI have pointed out perceived misapplication of BOF actions by ADF&G, the AG office, and the Lt. Governor. In addition, in reviewing the KRSA claim ADF&G staff met on this issue before the letter was written and the Directors, Regional Supervisors, and staff agreed on the present regulatory language, except for one individual from Sport Fish Division. Did that individual go to the sport fishing groups and help kraft this letter????
At a recent meeting of commercial fisherman a Director indicated that ADF&G spent more time on these regulations than they ever had before and that in the future they will not do this type of Board process again.
So who is right or wrong? If KRSA and MSBRSC are correct then ADF&G regulation specialist and staff are not capable of writing regulations correctly. If ADF&G is correct then KRSA and MSBRSC are misinformed or just sore because they failed to understand what happened at the BOF meeting.
I tend to think that KRSA failed to understand. They spent lots of time with BOF members and Larry Engel, representing the Mat/Su said that they had the issue of Susitna Sockeye and Coho solved with the 8 mile corridor. In addition, when I tried to tell Board members Johnstone and Brown that the 8 mile corridor was a mistake they either would not call on me or told me that I was not being honest in representing KAFC. So I find some justice in seeing KRSA and MSBRSC trying to change something they promoted, watched passed in a vote, and now are crying about it.
The bottom line of all this. The 2011 UCI BOF meeting was a sham from the start and the present BOF members should be removed for cause. When the public, ADF&G, KRSA, MSBRSC, KAFC, AG office, and Lt. Gov cannot understand what happened then the process is broken the BOF members and chairman are responsible.
So if KRSA prevails then ADF&G got it wrong. What other regulations did they get wrong and maybe their claim that UCIDA's points are invalid are not true. And why would ADF&G, the AG, and Lt. Gov. get it wrong. What happened in the process that would allow that? If the Board changes the regulations at this point in time they are saying that ADF&G are incapable of writing regulations.
Finally, if KRSA and UCIDA got it wrong then how did that happen? How could a process be so fouled up that no one can agree on what happened, including ADF&G staff.
The story will continue when the Commissioner and BOF respond to the petition. If the Board overturns ADF&G then someone in ADF&G should be held accountable. Maybe a legislative hearing is in order to sort this mess out.
What a mess!
The only blessing in all of this posturing and bickering is that there are actually still fish left to argue about.
"Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone."
The KeenEye MD
Boy, the story just gets better and better. I have never seen anything like this. So here is an update. The ADF&G, AG, and Lt. Gov sign the regulations into law. The regulations are printed and commercial fisherman have them in their possession. Also, ADF&G reviewed a chart handout that UCIDA makes everyyear showing the new corridor and fishing period restrictions.
So today the AG office finds a Board of Fishery finding, on the Board web page, that is a third version of what peope thought happened at the meeting. The BOF passed this finding in March at a crab meeting and it is different from what KRSA and ADF&G claims is the correct corridor limitations. Now one has to ask if it was on the web page since March how in the heck did the AG office and ADF&G not see it or review it for being accurate? The local area staff never saw the finding to review according to them.
So now the AG office is saying that the finding trumps everything else. Why I do not know since the some of the findings were never discussed in the meeting and the limitations in the finding were not discussed or voted on.
At this point UCIDA lawyers for the federal case are just thanking God and Country for providing one exhibit after another to show the State BOF process needs federal oversight.
Stay tuned - this is better than the Palin emails.
As a side note a local area commercial fisheries biologist is retiring on 1 July.
While I wish that biologist well in his retirement, we certainly will miss him at the helm. What a thankless job! Nerka, do you know who is going to take his place? The only possible bright side I can see is that after retirement he will no longer be under a gag order as a state employee and will be able to give expert testimony in relation to ucidas lawsuit. With the lawsuits and the ridiculous actions by the current (and past) boards, I foresee some big changes in cook inlet salmon management.
This is a really big deal. At issue is the board intent and what ended up being written in regulation. Do people err? Yes. Whether accidental or intentional, errors happen. Part of the public process is catching those errors and preventing errors from becoming regulation.
What happened with the 8 mile corridor and why? What is the "rest of the story" and what are the real impacts? With current restrictions in place, a potential larger than normal Kenai sockeye return, a more than likely weak Kenai king return--Are we in for "The Perfect Storm?" Nerka? Grampy, others--what do you think?
Willphish4food saya errors happen....5 pages worth? That is what it took to get the first set of reg
Originally Posted by Joe Lure
ulations through. However the 8 mile corridor is all about ignorance of the sport fishing groups in UCI. They have consultants who never managed this fishery and know little about it. The fact is that ADF&G will manage to goals and that will dictate fishing time and area. If they do not fish the inlet then it means for set net time on the beach.
While some want goals to be ignored that is not going to happen so all the regulations about windows and corridors are just to make the public think something is happening. The commissioner of ADF&G will be the real decision maker on the trade offs not the BOF