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Thread: Chitna personal use vs Subsistance use?

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    Member Vince's Avatar
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    Default Chitna personal use vs Subsistance use?

    Alrighty then... most y'all know i don't wander into fishing issues much, expect to remind some that fish are food not sexual fantasiies... ..

    but i have been getting some ear fulls recently regarding the law suit to return Chitna to a personal use fisherie...

    WHY?

    aside from Com fish vs subsistence quota's? is there.. the limits will stay the same,

    the season will stay the same...

    the harvest will stay the same...


    WHY the rush with the BOF to get it done?

    the definition of Subsistence is being re written.. however it is for Fish and Game... why is the BOF taking it on their own with out the BOG? or ac input?

    what is the underlying complication?


    thanks
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    Member thewhop2000's Avatar
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    Default a couple of points...

    Personal use and subsistence are two distinct species, when it comes to Chitina. The fish limit is night and day.
    I'm concerned about them not meeting with the BOG too. I would rather have fourteen people deciding than just 7. Isn't it now because there is no money for a joint meeting this year? Did I read that this year or am I confusing it with something else. Maybe the AC's should write letters asking for this to change. I would rather have more uninterested parties deciding the eight criteria for subsistence then just the BOF. I could already tell you how three of those votes are going to go, w/o a crystal ball.IMO
    If a dipnetter dips a fish and there is no one around to see/hear it, Did he really dip?

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    Member MRFISH's Avatar
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    Well, I was initially thinking that modifying the 8 C&T use criteria needed to be action by the joint boards (of fish and game), but I was wrong...or at least that's what the Department of Law has apparently advised the Boards.

    However, I think folks may be misinterpreting the judge's ruling, in this case. The judge did not say that the Board's decision on subsistence versus personal use at Chintina was wrong or right...he found that the 8th C&T use criteria was vague and subject to too much room for interpretation. I agree, and if you've read the judge's opinion, then you'll see that I'm one of the members quoted in the Judge's ruling as I was struggling with an interpretation of that 8th C&T point.

    All the court ruled was that the Board needs to better define the 8th criteria, specifically the "subsistence way of life", and then based on that better definiation, to re-examine the Chintina dip net fishery and rule on personal use/subsistence with that new definition. The judge did not direct the Board to come to any pre-defined outcome.

    I certainly know how polarizing this issue is...and I'd encourage folks to focus on the Board's proposed re-definition of the 8th criterion...as well as the designation of Chitinia subdistrict dipnetting. The board-generated proposals on the matter can be found here:

    http://www.boards.adfg.state.ak.us/f...als200-201.pdf


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    Art Nelson.

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    Member ak_powder_monkey's Avatar
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    Subsistence users get allocated fish in front of sport and commercial whereas PU fishermen are last in line. Its the Chitna dipnetter folks trying to screw with the gill netters downstream, because they are afraid of the copper turning into a kenai style fish war

    Of course the dip net fishery is P/U heck there are charters that run people to dipnet, if you are paying for a charter and gas from anchorage its not subsistence (the charter operators and stuff are the people who are trying to get the board to act obviously, its in their self interest). There is also a freaking subsistence fishery on the river that every Alaskan resident can participate in.

    It saddens me that we cannot just share the great resources of the state, and end up squabbling about every last fish. In the end the fish will lose and we will have none (or the oil will run out and everyone will leave)
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

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    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
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    Default Subsistance

    There are aslo subsistance fish wheel users that drive over in $200,000 motor homes from Anchorage, set up and hand out fish to their friends all summer long.

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    Couldn;t find these last night, but here they are, FYI...the 8 criteria the Boards utilize to make C&T determinations, per 5 AAC 99.010

    (b) Each board will identify fish stocks or game populations, or portions of stocks or populations, that are customarily and traditionally taken or used by Alaska residents for subsistence uses by considering the following criteria:

    (1) a long-term consistent pattern of noncommercial taking, use, and reliance on the fish stock or game population that has been established over a reasonable period of time of not less than one generation, excluding interruption by circumstances beyond the user's control, such as unavailability of the fish or game caused by migratory patterns;

    (2) a pattern of taking or use recurring in specific seasons of each year;

    (3) a pattern of taking or use consisting of methods and means of harvest that are characterized by efficiency and economy of effort and cost;

    (4) the area in which the noncommercial, long-term, and consistent pattern of taking, use, and reliance upon the fish stock or game population has been established;

    (5) a means of handling, preparing, preserving, and storing fish or game that has been traditionally used by past generations, but not excluding recent technological advances where appropriate;

    (6) a pattern of taking or use that includes the handing down of knowledge of fishing or hunting skills, values, and lore from generation to generation;

    (7) a pattern of taking, use, and reliance where the harvest effort or products of that harvest are distributed or shared, including customary trade, barter, and gift-giving; and

    (8) a pattern that includes taking, use, and reliance for subsistence purposes upon a wide diversity of fish and game resources and that provides substantial economic, cultural, social, and nutritional elements of the subsistence way of life.

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    Member ak_powder_monkey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daveinthebush View Post
    There are aslo subsistance fish wheel users that drive over in $200,000 motor homes from Anchorage, set up and hand out fish to their friends all summer long.
    Yup it is, but that's how our constitution reads right?

    Aren't the limits for the dipnet and subsistence fishery the same on the copper?

    I guess I'm bitter that a group motivated by financial self interest (Chitna dip net charter folks) are the ones pushing to make the copper river fishery all subsistence, giving them a mechanism to screw the commercial guys.
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vince View Post

    the definition of Subsistence is being re written.. however it is for Fish and Game... why is the BOF taking it on their own with out the BOG? or ac input?
    thanks
    The AC's do have an opportunity to comment on both of these proposals along with the public. On time comments are accepted through March 2nd. They are taking public comment at the Board meeting on March 20th. I would also reemphasize that the whole definition of subsistence is not being debated but just the definition of "subsistence way of life" that is then put in context of the 8 criteria used in subsistence decisions.

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    Vince, JTF is right...the proposed fix to the court ruling is very narrow and doesn't actually change the 8 criteria themselves, other than to provide more direction about how to interpret "subsistence way of life" in the 8th criteria. The BOF also has it as their interpretation of the term. Here is what the BOF has as their board-generated proposal:

    5 AAC 99.0XX. Board of Fisheries subsistence finding standards. In the identification by the Board of Fisheries of fish stocks or portions of fish stocks that are customarily and traditionally taken or used by Alaska residents for subsistence uses under 5 AAC 99.010(b), “subsistence way of life” means a way of life that is based on consistent, long-term reliance upon the fish and game resources for the basic necessities of life.

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    Member Vince's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=MRFISH;669188]Vince, JTF is right...the proposed fix to the court ruling is very narrow and doesn't actually change the 8 criteria themselves, other than to provide more direction about how to interpret "subsistence way of life" in the 8th criteria. The BOF also has it as their interpretation of the term. Here is what the BOF has as their board-generated proposal:

    5 AAC 99.0XX. Board of Fisheries subsistence finding standards. In the identification by the Board of Fisheries of fish stocks or portions of fish stocks that are customarily and traditionally taken or used by Alaska residents for subsistence uses under 5 AAC 99.010(b), “subsistence way of life” means a way of life that is based on consistent, long-term reliance upon the fish and game resources for the basic necessities of life.[/QUOTE]


    The basic Necessities of life.... now that i am sure will lead to some discussion now won't it... according to some if there is a place to buy a candy bar ( or steal one ) Fish and game are no longer a basic necessity?
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    “subsistence way of life” means a way of life that is based on consistent, long-term reliance upon the fish and game resources for the basic necessities of life

    I don't know if this is the right way to define it, either....and it also seems to duplicate part of criterion 1, "a long-term consistent pattern of noncommercial taking, use, and reliance on the fish stock or game population "

    Given that the court ruling found that the term "subsistence way of life" is too broad and subject to different interpretations, how would you suggest it be clarified/defined? To some degree, I always felt that the term is more of an amalgamation of the elements in the other 7 criteria.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MRFISH View Post
    [i]
    Given that the court ruling found that the term "subsistence way of life" is too broad and subject to different interpretations, how would you suggest it be clarified/defined? To some degree, I always felt that the term is more of an amalgamation of the elements in the other 7 criteria.
    Why not resort to what Webster has to say. Could the courts then argue with 'him' too? Use the Dictionary and don't try to overthink it.
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    Default Just a question?

    It would appear to me that since this impacts both game and fish that the proper forum for discussion is the legislature. They define statues and this appears to me to be a statue issue. Subsistence - what it is and what it is not has been defined by the legislature so they should deal with it and put it back to the Boards when done.

    I think the BOF is way out of line on this one. They seem to think they are charged with this for all Alaskans and the Board of Game. I do not really give a damm what Lance Nelson says - this is an ethical issue of where and who should deal with this. The Board of Fish is not the place in my opinion.

    Also, why let a court decision for a localized fishery direct state policy. The State could appeal this while working on a legislative solution. That would buy time.

    Where am I wrong on this?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nerka View Post
    It would appear to me that since this impacts both game and fish that the proper forum for discussion is the legislature. They define statues and this appears to me to be a statue issue. Subsistence - what it is and what it is not has been defined by the legislature so they should deal with it and put it back to the Boards when done.

    I think the BOF is way out of line on this one. They seem to think they are charged with this for all Alaskans and the Board of Game. I do not really give a damm what Lance Nelson says - this is an ethical issue of where and who should deal with this. The Board of Fish is not the place in my opinion.

    Also, why let a court decision for a localized fishery direct state policy. The State could appeal this while working on a legislative solution. That would buy time.

    Where am I wrong on this?
    Well I don't know if you're wrong on this. I initially thought that the joint Boards would need to address this, but a few things lead me to believe that this may not necessarliy be the case.

    First, the best guiding statute I could find (I don't have my full reg book at home with me, so forgive me if I missed something more appropriate) on c&t findings was 16.005.258(c), where the legislature outlines the criteria for defining non-subsistence areas...many of these criteria are similar to the (regulatory) C&T criteria (outlined in 5AAC 99.010) for fish/game stocks outside of non-subsistence areas...of which the judge found that "subsistence way of life" in #8 was subject to too much interpretation. However, this Statute doesn't provide the direct terminology used in the C&T criteria, so I'm guessing the Board(s) have discretion to further define and implement the broad intent of the Legislature.

    Second, the judge's orders in the Chitina case (#3 in the conclusions section) remanded it to the "Board" to:

    "define the term 'subsistence way of life' [...] using an objective standard supported by law"

    The judge did not say the Joint Boards nor the Legislature. Perhaps he erred as well, but I'll usually take a judge's interpretation over mine. Nerka, perhaps you're still right that the State should appeal further and/or ask the Legislature to work on it. I'm not in the middle of it...I wish I could have heard what was discussed in the Board's excutive session during the Fairbanks meeting.

    I can't attach the full court ruling here (too large), but if I can extract the conclusion page then I'll post it later (it's page 34 if you have it already), then you can read the judge's direction to the Board for yourself amdn make up your own minds.

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    Note that in my previous post, I was not commenting on HOW the Board should define "subsistence way of life", just responding to Nerka's post about process and whether the joint boards and/or legislature need to be involved. Still, maybe I'm missing something.

    I'm sure it will be an interesting March meeting...

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    Default judge and orders.

    The judge had a case before him that dealt with fish and the Board of Fisheries so it is no surprize that he referred the case back to the State and mentioned the Board. My point is that the Board of Fisheries should have said this is bigger than us and had at least a joint Board meeting to discuss it. They then may have wanted to kick it up to the Legislature.

    I just feel that would have been the right things to do. This definition impacts all Alaskans, not just fishing users of the resource. What happens if the Board of Game comes up with something different or the Legislature does something which is in conflict. I would have assumed that the AG would have thought this out more than give it to just the Board of Fisheries.

    Just my two cents worth.

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    Member Vince's Avatar
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    Okay so the reason i am asking...


    it has come up several AC meeting here in FBK.. and they all seem to think the BOF is in a hurry to get this done. and have written letters to the BOF asking them to slow down and do it correctly ... as the "CHANGE" will not affect dates, harvest, or limits.... and to include the BOG as the definition is for FISH and GAME...


    i really try to avoid fish issues as there is just TOO much brawling on it.. i even watch F&G bios roll their eyes at the fish guys. BUT there seems to be an underlying importance to all of this that i am not catching...


    am i wrong?

    thanks so far ... i am paying attention


    Vince..
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vince View Post
    am i wrong?
    Vince, no, you're not wrong, I didn't see anything that imposed a deadline of any sort for action. However, I don't know how he'd rule on an injunction of some sort if the plaintiffs felt (and so moved) that the board was dragging their collective feet...

    While I'm a staunch believer in due process (including the courts), I do hate to see the courts dictating fish and game policy (and I think judges are loathe to do the same, unless absolutely necessary)...the remand is the correct way to go.

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    Default This is a far reaching decision...

    That said, I would like to see a joint BOF/BOG make the decision than just one entity or another. This is crucial to a lot of decisions concerning both fish and Game. Lance Nelson be ****ed, I want more concerned people to weigh in on this than just the BOF. IMO!!!
    If a dipnetter dips a fish and there is no one around to see/hear it, Did he really dip?

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    I'm not sure the current BOF is even able to rule on this. How will conflicts of interest be determined, as it is a statewide issue? Anyone with a financial interest of any kind in a sport, commercial or PU fishery will be affected by this ruling. Mel Morris, John Jensen, and Vince Webster are financially dependent upon commercial fisheries. Howard Delo takes place in PU fisheries as a consumptive user. Janet Woods is a traditional subsistence user- from '87-'99 in Rampart, and currently on her off shifts (from her resume). Bill Brown owns a reel repair shop- his business depends on sport fishing. Johnstone is the only member without a current dog in the fight, as far as I can see. So who will be able to rule on this?

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