Bristol Bay Setnetters Begin Vote on Whether to Join BBRSDA

Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association.

Efforts to bring Bristol Bay setnetters into the ranks of the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association (BBRSDA) are underway.

The BBRSDA is conducting an election of Bristol Bay salmon set gillnet permit holders to approve a self-imposed 1% seafood development tax of all interim-use and limited entry Bristol Bay set gillnet permit holders within Bristol Bay. The assessment would be effective on June 1, 2024.

Each eligible voter may cast one ballot. All ballots must be mailed to the Alaska Division of Investments and postmarked by Oct. 9. The election closes on Oct 19.

All votes are to be counted and certified by the Alaska Commissioner of Commerce, Community and Economic Development.

Complete details and voting instructions are available on the BBRSDA website.

To ensure that their votes remain confidential, setnetters are being asked to mark ballots and seal them in a yellow envelope, then place the yellow envelope inside the blue envelope and seal it. On the outside of the blue envelope, each voter must sign their name under their printed name and Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission (CFEC) license number.

Andy Wink, executive director of the BBRSDA, said election results would likely be available in early to mid-November.

The overall objective of the BBRSDA is to maximize the value of the fishery for fishermen through marketing Bristol Bay seafood, investing in improvements to the fishing industry and infrastructure in the region and to fund quality-improvement efforts.

Goals also include protecting salmon habitat, bolstering fishery management, supporting salmon research and a variety of other activities.