Alaska Board of Fisheries Looks at Pacific Cod Proposals

Proposals on Pacific cod fisheries for Prince William Sound, Cook Inlet, Kodiak, Chignik and the South Alaska Peninsula are on the agenda for the Alaska Board of Fisheries meeting at Coast International Inn in Anchorage Oct. 4-10. The first two days will be a board work session, during which ten agenda change requests will be considered, along with discussion on stocks of concern. Starting Oct. 6, the board will be considering Department of Fish and Game proposals on Pacific cod fisheries that have been submitted by the general public, fishing organizations, local fish and game advisory committees and the Alaska. The board has received more than 40 proposals for consideration during the five-day public meeting. Among the proposals is Proposal 6 from the Alaska Jig Association for the Kodiak area Pacific cod management plan to cap jig vessels 58 feet and larger to 10 percent of the state-waters Pacific cod jig allocation to their historical high harvest (10 percent) in the Kodiak area. The issue, according to the proposals, is that the large jig vessels have been taking a larger percentage of the jig guideline harvest level that has historically been a smaller vessel fishery. If nothing is done, the Alaska Jig Association said, smaller vessels will continue to lose fishing opportunity.

Proposal 14 would establish a 14-day stand down period for vessels using pot gear in a Pacific cod fishery prior to registering for the Chignik state waters Pacific cod fishery. Proponents say the absence of a local processor in Chignik that will process Pacific cod has put the local shallow draft fleet out of the federal fisheries, and as a result the federal government has taken the unused, local fishermen’s LLPs, limiting the local fleet to the state Pacific cod season. This, along with competition from the larger, non-local, deep drafted boats coming out of the federal fisheries, has brought the challenge on the local economy to a critical point, said proposal sponsors Don Bumpus and Aaron Anderson.

Agendas, proposals and other information for the meetings can be found on the web at: