Legislature(1997 - 1998)
03/24/1997 05:06 PM FSH
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
HOUSE SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON FISHERIES March 24, 1997 5:06 p.m. MEMBERS PRESENT Representative Alan Austerman, Chairman Representative Ivan Ivan Representative Scott Ogan Representative Mark Hodgins MEMBERS ABSENT Representative Gene Kubina OTHER MEMBERS PRESENT Senator Loren Leman COMMITTEE CALENDAR CS FOR SENATE BILL NO. 7(RLS) AM "An Act reducing certain resident sport fishing, hunting, and trapping license fees, increasing certain nonresident sport fishing license and tag fees, and relating to nonresident sport fishing and hunting licenses and tags; and providing for an effective date." - MOVED HCSCSSB 7(FSH) OUT OF COMMITTEE *HOUSE BILL NO. 204 "An Act revising the procedures and authority of the Alaska Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission, the Board of Fisheries, and the Department of Fish and Game to establish a moratorium on participants or vessels, or both, participating in certain fisheries; and providing for an effective date." - MOVED HB 204 OUT OF COMMITTEE (* First public hearing) PREVIOUS ACTION BILL: SB 7 SHORT TITLE: HUNTING SPORT FISH TRAPPING FEES/LICENSES BILL VERSION: CSSB 7(RLS) AM SPONSOR(S): SENATOR(S) DONLEY, Sharp JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 01/03/97 15 (S) PREFILE RELEASED 1/3/97 01/13/97 15 (S) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S) 01/13/97 15 (S) RES, FIN 01/29/97 (S) RES AT 3:30 PM BUTROVICH ROOM 205 01/29/97 (S) MINUTE(RES) 02/03/97 (S) RES AT 3:30 PM BUTROVICH ROOM 205 02/03/97 (S) MINUTE(RES) 02/06/97 246 (S) RES RPT CS 3DP 2NR NEW TITLE 02/06/97 246 (S) DP: HALFORD, GREEN, SHARP 02/06/97 246 (S) NR: LEMAN, LINCOLN 02/06/97 246 (S) FISCAL NOTES TO SB & CS (F&G-2) 02/11/97 283 (S) CORRECTED ZERO FN TO SB (DPS) 02/11/97 283 (S) ZERO FN TO CS (DPS) 02/18/97 (S) FIN AT 9:00 AM SENATE FINANCE 532 02/25/97 491 (S) FIN RPT CS 2DP 5NR NEW TITLE 02/25/97 492 (S) DP: SHARP, DONLEY; NR: ADAMS, PARNELL 02/25/97 492 (S) NR: PHILLIPS, PEARCE, TORGERSON 02/25/97 492 (S) FNS TO CS (F&G-2) 02/25/97 492 (S) PREVIOUS ZERO FNS APPLY TO CS (DPS-2) 02/26/97 (S) RLS AT 12:30 PM FAHRENKAMP RM 203 02/26/97 (S) MINUTE(RLS) 03/05/97 567 (S) RULES TO CALENDAR W/CS NEW TITLE 3/5 03/04/97 567 (S) DP: KELLY; CALENDAR: LEMAN, TORGERSON; 03/04/97 567 (S) NR: DUNCAN; DNP: TAYLOR 03/04/97 567 (S) FN TO CS (F&G) 03/04/97 567 (S) PREVIOUS FN ( F&G) 03/05/97 567 (S) PREVIOUS ZERO FN APPLIES TO CS (DPS) 03/05/97 575 (S) READ THE SECOND TIME 03/05/97 575 (S) RLS CS ADOPTED UNAN CONSENT 03/05/97 575 (S) ADVANCED TO THIRD READING UNAN CONSENT 03/05/97 575 (S) READ THE THIRD TIME CSSB 8(RLS) 03/05/97 576 (S) PASSED Y17 N3 03/05/97 576 (S) EFFECTIVE DATE(S) SAME AS PASSAGE 03/05/97 576 (S) MACKIE NOTICE OF RECONSIDERATION 03/06/97 604 (S) RECON TAKEN UP IN THIRD READING 03/06/97 604 (S) RETURN TO SECOND FOR AM 1 UNAN CONSENT 03/06/97 605 (S) AM NO 1 OFFERED BY MACKIE 03/06/97 605 (S) AM NO 1 ADOPTED UNAN CONSENT 03/06/97 605 (S) AUTOMATICALLY IN THIRD READING 03/06/97 606 (S) PASSED ON RECONSIDERATION Y17 N3 03/06/97 606 (S) EFFECTIVE DATE(S) SAME AS PASSAGE 03/06/97 606 (S) TRANSMITTED TO (H) 03/07/97 576 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S) 03/07/97 577 (H) FSH, RESOURCES, FINANCE 03/24/97 (H) FSH AT 5:00 PM CAPITOL 124 BILL: HB 204 SHORT TITLE: MORATORIA ON COMMERCIAL FISHERIES ENTRY SPONSOR(S): SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON FISHERIES JRN-DATE JRN-PG ACTION 03/19/97 756 (H) READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRAL(S) 03/19/97 756 (H) FSH, RESOURCES 03/24/97 (H) FSH AT 5:00 PM CAPITOL 124 WITNESS REGISTER SENATOR DAVE DONLEY Alaska State Legislature Capitol Building, Room 508 Juneau, Alaska 99801 Telephone: (907) 465-3892 POSITION STATEMENT: Provided sponsor testimony on CSSB 7(RLS) AM. KATHY HANSEN, Executive Director United Southeast Alaska Gillnetters Association P.O. Box 22427 Juneau, Alaska 99802 Telephone: (907) 586-5860 POSITION STATEMENT: Testified on CSSB 7(RLS) AM. GERON BRUCE, Legislative Liaison Office of the Commissioner Alaska Department of Fish and Game P.O. Box 25526 Juneau, Alaska 99801 Telephone: (907) 465-6143 POSITION STATEMENT: Testified on CSSB 7(RLS) AM. ERIC STIRRUP P.O. Box 4123 Kodiak, Juneau 99615 Telephone: (907) 486-2200 POSITION STATEMENT: Testified on CSSB 7(RLS) AM. AMY DAUGHERTY, Legislative Administrative Assistant to Representative Alan Austerman Alaska State Legislature Capitol Building, Room 434 Juneau, Alaska 99801 Telephone: (907) 465-4230 POSITION STATEMENT: Read the sponsor statement for HB 204. DALE ANDERSON, Chairman Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission Alaska Department of Fish and Game 8800 Glacier Highway, Suite 109 Juneau, Alaska 99801 Telephone: (907) 789-6160 POSITION STATEMENT: Testified on HB 204. DEAN PADDOCK, Representative Alaska Bristol Bay Drift Netters Association P.O Box 21951 Juneau, Alaska 99802 Telephone: (907) 463-4970 POSITION STATEMENT: Testified in favor of HB 204. ACTION NARRATIVE TAPE 97-14, SIDE A, Number 001 CHAIRMAN ALAN AUSTERMAN called the House Special Committee on Fisheries meeting to order at 5:06 p.m. Members present at the call to order were Representatives Austerman, Ivan, Ogan and Hodgins. Representative Kubina was absent. CSSB 7(RLS) AM - HUNTING SPORT FISH TRAPPING FEES/LICENSES Number 031 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN announced the first order of business to be CSSB 7(RLS) AM, "An Act reducing certain resident sport fishing, hunting, and trapping license fees, increasing certain nonresident sport fishing license and tag fees, and relating to nonresident sport fishing and hunting licenses and tags; and providing for an effective date." He asked Senator Donley to present the bill. Number 060 SENATOR DAVE DONLEY stated that the bill does several things. The first section lowers the current combination fee for residents, for hunting, trapping, and various combinations of sport fishing licenses, by one dollar for each of the multiple licenses. If there are two licenses, it lowers it by one dollar if there are three licenses, it lowers it by two dollars. This is the savings to the state because the state pays a commission to vendors to sell the licenses, therefore they only pay the commission once if a combination license is sold. He stated that it gives an incentive to people, within our cost savings, to buy a combination license. Number 177 SENATOR DONLEY stated that Section 4, deals with nonresident sport fishing licenses. He stated that currently there are four types of nonresident sport fish licenses: a 1-day license for $10, which this legislation does not change; a 3-day license for $15, which this legislation proposes to change to $20; this legislation proposes to create a 7-day license for $30; a 14-day license for $30, which this legislation would raise to $50; and currently there is an annual nonresident license for $50, which would no longer be available under this legislation, except under the provisions of Section 5. Number 255 SENATOR DONLEY stated that Section 5 specifies that to be eligible for an annual nonresident sport fish license, one needs to possess a sport fish guide license or be employed by somebody who does. The reason for this exemption is that typically these people are already licensed commercially to the state, already paying a fees for the licenses and because the House was proposing that commercial sport fish guide license holders would be required to have an annual sport fish license, so the Senate, in an effort to eliminate a conflict in bills, wanted to make sure there was a provision for it in this bill. He stated that the guidelines are that if one holds a current sport fish guide license or air taxi commercial operators certificate where you are licensed to carry passengers for hire by the coast guard, you could buy an annual license for $150. This would also apply to those people who are employed by these license holders. Number 359 SENATOR DONLEY stated that Section 6 is a technical change because by repealing the annual sport fish license section, a technical change was needed because it was wrapped up with game tag language, it does not change anything but just restates existing language. Number 401 SENATOR DONLEY stated that Section 7 makes a parallel provision for King Salmon tags following the same scheme as the increased fees for nonresidents for ordinary fishing licenses. A 1-day tag is still $10, a 3-day tag would be $20, a 7-day tag $30, a 14-day tag $50 and there is no provision for an annual tag. Number 454 SENATOR DONLEY stated that the legislation makes no proposed changes to the military, so there is a status quo for any current military in Alaska. He stated that there as been a request to add to Section 5, provisions for people who hold current limited entry permits issued by the Alaska Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission (CFEC) and that there be a provision for a crew members license. He stated that this would be acceptable if it is couched in the frame that a person could sport fish while they are actively engaged in the commercial fishing ventures. He stated that it does make sense if this is done in the down time when commercial fishing, but he did not want to see having a crew member license justify people who are nonresidents staying all year and fishing all the time. Number 584 REPRESENTATIVE MARK HODGINS stated that needed to make a conflict of interest statement in that he has money in a guiding outfit. Number 604 REPRESENTATIVE SCOTT OGAN asked if on page 2, line 28, the definition of prepared for storage, is taken out of a regulation and codified in statute. Number 655 SENATOR DONLEY stated that it is a section that is word for word as it appears in existing law but needed to be restated here because they deleted a section of statute that overlapped with this regarding sport fish, so none of the language in Section 6 is a change from existing law. This language had appeared in a different section of existing law that is repealed on page 4, line 1. He stated that it repealed the present annual nonresident sport fish license and eliminated this language as well, therefore, it needed to restated in another section. Number 721 REPRESENTATIVE HODGINS stated that he has mixed emotions on the increase in fees. He stated that he realizes there is a problem that needs to be solved with people canning red salmon to pay for their vacation but he is not sure that this would be a deterrent for someone coming up here and doing that. Number 786 SENATOR DONLEY stated that there have been quite a few hearings on this legislation in the Senate and this cite has been around for four years. He stated that there are no changes in this proposal to the 1-day license and it still keeps the 3-day license cheap at $20 and everyone agrees that the 7-day license is a good option for people visiting Alaska. This bill is really designed to discourage long term usage by nonresidents of our sport fish, while not penalizing people that are visiting for a short period of time. He stated that someone who wanted to abuse it could be continuing to buy the 14-day licenses but that person will send up a red flag for enforcement officials to see what they are doing with those licenses. For the people that are visiting for a summer it would be a lot easier to buy a 1-day license when they want to fish rather than being in a continual harvest mode. Number 913 REPRESENTATIVE HODGINS asked that unless the enforcement capabilities are increased, would this solve the problem. Number 925 SENATOR DONLEY stated that there was a major enforcement effort on the Kenai Peninsular last season where fish and wildlife tried to target some of the worst abusers to fine and prosecute them. He stated that we could also use more enforcement but the public safety budget is an area where we are maintaining our current level of commitment, not increasing it. Number 982 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN stated that on page 2, Section 5, it has allowed for the possibility of a nonresident license for $150 and on page 3, Section 7, there is no allowance for a King Salmon tag for a nonresident. Number 996 SENATOR DONLEY replied that because it is so competitive, King Salmon tags are a special issue. There would still be the option for people to buy the 1-day King Salmon tag to go with their annual nonresident license or even up to a 14-day King Salmon tag. The focus of this legislation was to create a mechanism to facilitate other legislation that mandates an annual sport fish license for people that own types of commercial licenses so that we were not cutting them off, if we were going to mandate that they have annual licenses. The King Salmon tag did not seem necessary to fulfill that purpose. Number 1057 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN stated that he had a couple of amendments and would entertain a motion to accept the CSSB 7(RLS) AM as a working draft. Number 1069 REPRESENTATIVE IVAN IVAN made a motion to adopt CSSB 7(RLS) AM before the committee. Number 1074 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN asked if there were any objections. Number 1080 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN objected for discussion purposes and asked why the committee was doing that. CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN replied so we would have a working draft before the committee. REPRESENTATIVE OGAN asked if there are changes from another bill. CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN asked what he was referring to. REPRESENTATIVE OGAN stated that it was passed over from the Senate. CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN stated that he stands corrected and he announced he would take public testimony on the amendments. Number 1131 KATHY HANSEN, Executive Director, United Southeast Alaska Gillnetters Association, stated that the association supports the purpose of the bill and requested that the amendment be inserted for the CFEC permit holders and crew member licenses. She stated that the seasons last for a long time and if a crew member only has a day off they often won't use it to go into town but will throw out a dungeness pot or ring and try to catch something to eat, something different besides what they are fishing for. To do this they will have to buy a 14-day license which would be fiscally difficult for them to do. The association would like to provide a way for the fisherman to catch fish to eat while out commercial fishing. She stated that this is a common practice in the herring and longer salmon fisheries. Number 1238 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN asked which of the two amendments she was addressing. Number 1246 MS. HANSEN stated that if the association had to go with one of the amendments it would be the commercial limited entry permit holders. A crew member license for a nonresident is only $90, so someone could abuse the system quite easily. She stated that the cheapest entry permit is a hand troll permit which would cost $10,000, someone would not go through that method to abuse the system. She stated that they would prefer the limited entry permit amendment. Number 1270 GERON BRUCE, Legislative Liaison, Office of the Commissioner, Alaska Department of Fish and Game, stated that they have some concerns with the bill. He stated that the lack of an annual nonresident license is a concern. The fee differential between a resident and a nonresident license is a concern because that is an article that may be required in order to engage in a business in Alaska. There is some concern within the Department of Law that it could be challenged by a nonresident guide who is required to have that license, as an infringement of their rights under the U.S. Constitution's, Privileges and Immunities Clause. This clause allows a citizen of one state to have the same privileges of citizens in other states. He stated that they would like to see an annual nonresident license for several reasons. If someone moves to the state with the intention to become a permanent resident, that person would have to buy a series of licenses to fish through the summer. The department is not certain that this should be the state policy towards new residents. Number 1432 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN stated that he is a little confused, he thought this bill had a provision for a nonresident annual sport fishing license. Number 1443 SENATOR DONLEY replied that it is only for people who have other sorts of different licenses. Number 1462 MR. BRUCE stated that the department's recommendation would be to provide an annual nonresident license for people who weren't involved in the commercial industry. The reasons being to accommodate recent residents of the state so that there isn't the burden on them to buy a series of 14-day licenses, to accommodate guests for are visiting for a long time and for the seasonal resident and workers. The option should be available although not at the same cost as a resident. He stated that for a recreational license it is not so difficult to charge a higher differential fee and would suggest that it cost between $100 and $125 a year. Number 1558 MR. BRUCE stated that the public may be concerned how the seasonal bag limits will be enforced. The Board of Fisheries has begun the process to place seasonal bag limits as a solution to the excessive take of King Salmon by nonresidents. He stated that there is the perception that under the 14-day license if they decide to buy another one they get a second or third bag limit. He stated that is not the case, however the license is the mechanism for recording the take, by getting a new license it would be difficult for enforcement personnel to tag that person who already has taken their bag limit. Number 1612 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN asked if there was a way to identify or attached the licenses together, when additional 14-day licenses are issued, for reporting purposes. Number 1652 MR. BRUCE stated that it would be administratively complicated to accomplish that. Number 1659 REPRESENTATIVE HODGINS asked if a class 7 is a nonresident license and how long is it good for. Number 1684 MR. BRUCE stated that it would cover a calendar year ending at December 31st of that year. REPRESENTATIVE HODGINS stated that then there is a mechanism for an nonresident annual fishing license now. Number 1699 MR. BRUCE replied that currently there is, under this bill there would not be, except for people involved in the sport fish guiding industry. Number 1710 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN stated that the 3-to-1 differential is currently being litigated because it is occupational license but if the differential was for a non-occupational license we could get around it. Number 1778 MR. BRUCE stated that the courts do not apply as strict a test as the courts apply to non-occupational licenses. He stated that in the Carlson case, courts have found that you have to look at the amount of state money that is put into the management of the industry and the resources, above and beyond what is contributed by the license holders, to determine whether or not it is reasonable. He stated that you can require the difference from what the state puts in above and beyond what the licenses holders pay to be applied to nonresident licenses. The courts are going through the process of finding out whether the current differential is justified, given the different sources of funds that the state is putting into its management system. Number 1849 REPRESENTATIVE IVAN asked if it was against the law to have sport caught fish on a commercial boat during a commercial fishery. Number 1868 MR. BRUCE replied that there is such a regulation but thinks that it only applies to the troll fishery in Southeast Alaska and would check further into it. Number 1885 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN stated that he assumes Representative Ivan was referring to the two amendments. He stated that the commercial fishermen exemption that they are talking about in the amendments is that the industry has quite a few closures when the workers will sport fish at that time. Number 1906 REPRESENTATIVE IVAN stated that he is not talking against the amendment or the bill. Number 1916 REPRESENTATIVE HODGINS stated that on the back of his license there are provisions for a 1-day, 3-day and 14-day license for a nonresident and asked why there isn't that option for residents. MR. BRUCE replied that there is one flat annual fee for residents which is $15. ERIC STIRRUP, testified via teleconference from Kodiak, that the bill makes no provision for a nonresident, angler annual license. He stated that there are many nonresident contractors who are building projects on state, federal, borough or city money, who are working on the project for at least two years and are denied the opportunity to purchase a nonresident annual license. He stated that if those people buy more than one 14-day license they are red flagged by the Department of Fish and Game as potentially breaking the law. He stated that they are given no opportunity but break the law from the standpoint that they will have to buy multiple licenses. He stated that this could be solved by having a $150 nonresident angler annual license. He stated that the legislature should stand behind the Board of Fisheries politically, to implement an annual seasonal bag limit for all recreational anglers in the state of Alaska. He stated that some of the biggest offenders of bag limits that he has seen are not from out of state but are living in Kodiak. Number 2083 SENATOR DONLEY wanted to clarify that when Mr. Bruce spoke to the Privileges and Immunities Clause he was really speaking to the Commerce Clause. The Privileges and Immunities Clause does provide for a much greater discrepancy, it is the Commerce Clause that ties us up when we do the 1-to-3 ratio in any commercial operation. He said, "The Commerce Clause does not apply except through this new linkage to the commercial licenses and no one knows, since it has never been done before, how a court would see that particular part." He stated that if there was a bag limit problem it would be under the existing law also because of the options for the shorter licenses. Number 2126 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN asked what the discussions were on the Senate side of everyone having to pay a $150 dollars. Number 2136 SENATOR DONLEY stated that it is an option for the committee to consider, long time visitors can still fish a day at a time for $10 or a week for $30 and those visitors, because they are here all the time, are going to fish when the fish are in. He stated that it wouldn't be necessary to continually buy 14-day licenses unless they are trying to catch fish as a full time operation. He stated that they have tried to provide options by keeping the 1-day cost low and keeping the short term cost low so that people can continue to utilize the resource without over using it. Number 2189 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN asked what about the person who moves here and wants to fish all the time. He stated that the differential discriminates against the person who is establishing a residency, buying 14-day licenses adds up to a lot a money, to fish for the summer. Number 2223 SENATOR DONLEY replied that is true. We would be discriminating there, the question is are we unfairly discriminating. He stated that on the House side there is a proposal to determine a permanent resident through the permanent dividend criteria, which is a great idea to reduce some of the abuses we have had with nonresidents claiming and buying resident licenses. He stated that it is not unreasonable to ask new residents to show that they are committed to being here in Alaska, before they are given the benefits of the lower fees for the sport fish license because so much of the cost in Alaska is from state government providing the infrastructure for the roads and the camp grounds that visitors use and are resources that are owned by the people. New residents do not have a good claim on that ownership until they have shown a commitment to be here for a period of time. Number 2286 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN asked what the other committee referrals are on the House side. Number 2289 SENATOR DONLEY replied the other committees are resources and finance. Number 2298 REPRESENTATIVE HODGINS stated that he would have a difficult time moving this bill out unless it could be assured that there was going to be quite a bit of discussion on an annual fee. He stated that he can understand trying to get a handle on some of the abuses, but would suggest that if someone brought an annual license with an out of state address, that would be a red flag but not diminish the ability for someone that is living here for one year before they have obtained residency to sport fish. He stated that he would like to have some assurances that people who intend to move here to establish a residency are not discriminated against. Number 2349 SENATOR DONLEY replied that the safeguard here is that they can always fish for $10, if they want to fish. He stated that the only person who would have a hardship under this is someone who just moves here, and typically there is just one season to fish, but it is reasonable to expect them to establish residency in a more permanent matter before they reap the benefits in Alaska. He stated that this is asked to be done for the permanent fund dividend and the longevity bonus. Number 2396 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN asked if there has been any discussion whether it would be discrimination for a person trying to establish residency being able to obtain a 14-day license by the Department of Law. Number 2403 SENATOR DONLEY replied that the issue is not whether or not there is discrimination but is the discrimination improper. He stated that we clearly discriminate all through our laws based on residency, the question becomes at what point is it improper discrimination, which is basically determined under the Privileges and Immunities Clause. Since it is a sport fish question it is under the Privileges and Immunities Clause, if it was a commercial question it would be under the Commerce Clause. The Privileges and Immunities Clause is a sliding scale of scrutiny based on the importance of the right or privilege involved. He stated that there are different standards for different rights such as welfare, emergency services and employment. He stated that courts are not going to find that this issue is a vital concern to someone being able to survive because it is not a commercial activity, it is a recreational activity. The odds of someone saying they have to have a benefit with less then a year of establishing residency would be very slight. TAPE 97-14, SIDE B Number 006 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN stated that there are a lot of people who get there resident hunting license by lying, and he is trying to deal with that through legislation. He stated that he is concerned that the bill may give people more reasons to lie. He stated that he knows there are a lot of people who move here and lie to buy a resident fishing license and wondered if we were not creating more of that problem by not giving them the opportunity to pay $150 for a year round resident license. Number 059 REPRESENTATIVE IVAN made a motion to move Amendment 1, O-LSO131\PA.2, 3/24/97, for adoption. Number 071 REPRESENTATIVE HODGINS asked if these are presented as two amendments or as one amendment. CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN stated two different amendments. Number 083 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN objected that he would favor the other amendment rather than then Amendment 1, for the reasons stated by Kathy Hansen. Number 105 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN asked if everybody understood what the two amendments do. The Amendment 1 on page 2, line 22, following "Guard" inserts ";or (B) a current commercial fishing crew member license issued by the department". The other amendment would insert ";or (B) a current entry permit or interim-use permit issued by the department". He stated that if Amendment 1 passed all commercial fishermen would be covered because they have to have a crew member license whether they have a limited entry permit or not. Number 144 MS. HANSEN stated that one could use their limited entry permit for a crew member license in another commercial fishery and does not know if it that would not hold true in this case. Number 155 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN asked if the limited entry amendment could eliminate some commercial fisherman from getting a sport fish license because they do not hold a permit. Number 163 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN asked if we are debating on both amendments even though there is only Amendment 1 on the table. Number 171 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN stated that we may vote one down in favor of the other so we need to understand what we are voting on. Number 178 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN stated that he is concerned that Amendment 1 would give people the loop hole, for an annual nonresident sport fish license by purchasing a commercial crew license, which is his objection. He asked if the limited entry amendment was being offered as well. REPRESENTATIVE IVAN stated he was offering Amendment 1 but if there are not enough votes he would withdraw it. REPRESENTATIVE OGAN asked if Amendment 1 was accepted would it include limited entry permit holders. Number 229 MR. BRUCE asked if the question is if you had a commercial entry permit would that cover everyone. Number 248 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN stated that the question is if someone held a commercial fishing crew member license would that also cover people that held a limited entry permit license. Number 258 MR. BRUCE stated that it would not in every case. He stated that there are people who fish just as crew members and they only have a crew member license and they do not hold a limited entry permit. He stated that he did not know how many people would fall into that category. Number 278 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN asked if Representative Ogan's objection was maintained. Number 282 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN replied yes because it seems like Amendment 1 is giving people a loophole and if someone has a limited entry permit they would be able to fish for the crew members on the boat and if the crew wants to sport fish they would have to buy a sport fish license. Number 306 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN stated that he would speak in favor of the motion because of the issue of being a commercial crew member out on the grounds for 30-days to 60-days at a time, during which there are a number of openings and closures. It would not be right for just the skipper to be able to sport fish and a crew member not be able to do the same thing. He stated that if it is to be equitable Amendment 1 would be the one to choose rather the limited entry amendment. Number 317 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN stated that it would be fine unless people figured out the loophole and asked how the sponsor felt about Amendment 1. Number 354 SENATOR DONLEY stated that this is definitely a loophole but they would still have to pay $150 for the annual license which will generate more revenue to helping out the resource. He stated that he is concerned about it but does not have a big objection to it because this is not the group of people who are abusing the annual licenses. He stated that it could have some fine tuning such as stating one has to hold a commercial crew license and be currently employed, which would go a long way to prevent someone from just buying a crew license to be able to sport fish annually. We have done this when trying to figure people who were currently employed in the sport fish industry. He stated that it wouldn't cut all the abuses down but it might tighten them up a bit. Number 449 REPRESENTATIVE IVAN asked for an at ease. Number 455 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN called for a brief at ease at 6:10. Number 455 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN called the committee back to order at 6:13. Number 464 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN asked if there was any further discussion on Amendment 1. Number 467 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN stated that he would like to withdraw his objection because if someone wanted to exploit the resources that badly they would have to buy a commercial fishing crew member license. He stated it could be an out for new residents and it would be a another $150 to fish all year. Number 491 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN asked if there were any further objections, hearing none Amendment 1 passed. Number 512 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN asked if the limited entry amendment was going to be addressed by the committee. He stated that it needs to be discussed whether or not Amendment 1 includes someone who has a permit issued by the Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission. He asked if Amendment 1 includes holders of the limited entry permit. Number 552 MR. BRUCE stated that he did not believe it required that they would have to go out and buy a crew member license as well. The entry permit serves in lieu of a crew member license but is not a crew members license. He stated that there is nothing that prohibits them from buying a crew member license and is not sure that they would automatically have that benefit simply by having that entry permit. Number 586 SENATOR DONLEY stated that they asked the Department of Law that question and they think that they are two different groups of people. If the committee wants to extend the privilege for an annual license to permit holders, the limited entry amendment could be adopted as well. Number 605 REPRESENTATIVE HODGINS asked if a nonresident wanted an annual sport fish license, and bought a crew members license would that be legal. Number 647 MR. BRUCE replied that he did not believe that would be doing anything illegal. There is no requirement to have to crew in a fishery in order to buy a crew member license. Number 654 REPRESENTATIVE HODGINS stated that this way the nonresident annual license would then be $240. Number 687 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN made a motion to move Amendment 2, O- LSO131\PA.3, Utermohle, and stated that it needs a technical amendment in the relettering. Number 716 MR. BRUCE stated that he wanted to point out that a difference by doing it this way through a crew members license verses a nonresident annual sport fishing license is that one goes into the general fund and one goes into the fish and game fund. REPRESENTATIVE HODGINS asked which would be which. Number 748 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN replied $90 dollars goes into the general fund and $150 goes into the fish and game fund. Number 762 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN stated that Amendment PA.3 is before the committee with a technical amendment to change line 5 "(B)" to "(C)" so that it follows the first amendment that was passed. Number 764 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN asked if there were any objections to the amendment, hearing none it was so ordered. Number 789 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN made a motion to move HCSCSSB 7(FSH), with individual recommendations and accompanying fiscal note. Number 797 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN asked if there was an objection, hearing none HCSCSSB 7(FSH) was moved out of the House Special Committee on Fisheries. HB 204 - MORATORIA ON COMMERCIAL FISHERIES ENTRY Number 810 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN announced the next order of business to be HB 204, "An Act revising the procedures and authority of the Alaska Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission, the Board of Fisheries, and the Department of Fish and Game to establish a moratorium on participants or vessels, or both, participating in certain fisheries; and providing for an effective date", and stated that his staff will present the bill. AMY DAUGHERTY, Legislative Administrative Assistant to Representative Alan Austerman, read the following sponsor statement into the record: "House Bill 204 amends the existing moratorium law as part of Alaska's existing fisheries management process. The current moratorium statute is burdensome unworkable and confusing. The current process involves multiple steps where fishers seeking a moratorium must first go to the Commissioner of Fish and Game, who, in turn must seek authorization from the Board of Fisheries. Once authorization is granted from the Board of Fisheries, the commissioner then petitions the Limited Entry Commission to provide a moratorium. "The Limited Entry Commission is them authorized to go forward if it can make findings required by the current statute, which are difficult to understand and mutually inconsistent. "This process prevents a quick response in fisheries that are growing too rapidly to ensure effective management. As a result, the resource and the economic livelihood of fishers could be jeopardized. In some situations, Alaska Department of Fish and Game's only recourse is to close the fishery or refuse to open a new fishery if effort cannot be controlled. "House Bill 204 would allow fishers seeking a moratorium to petition the commission directly. This legislation would also give the commission the authority to place a moratorium on vessels and gear as well as individuals. This is important in a fishery like the Bering Sea Korean Hair Crab Fishery, which is a bill we did last year. "Under the current statute, eligibility to participate during the moratorium is based on past participation. This requirement precludes the use of a moratorium in new fisheries or in fisheries that have remained closed for years. In these two situations, participation level in an open access fishery may be initially too great to promote resource conservation and sustainable fisheries. House Bill 204 would allow the commission to implement a moratorium in such fisheries and base eligibility on other reasonable standards such as participation in similar fisheries. "Additionally, HB 204 would allow the state to extend its moratorium authority to offshore fisheries adjacent to state waters when consistent with federal law. "Improving the moratorium law is consistent with our concern for developing and protecting jobs, as well as streamlining government an resource protection." Number 989 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN stated that, sponsor of the Senate version of the bill, Senator Loran Leman was present. Number 997 DALE ANDERSON, Chairman, Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission, Alaska Department of Fish and Game, stated that the bill makes a lot of sense, it is an opportunity to streamline the process and gives fisherman direct access to the commission as was originally intended. It relives the legislature of dealing with moratorium issues, issues that the commission is paid to deal with. The bill has a zero fiscal note, it will be a financial savings to the state as well. He stated that the commission does have an existing moratorium authority, it is not something that is being looked at as a new authority, but it is a very confusing convoluted process that the public has to go through to obtain a moratorium in their fishery and the bill will provide direct access to the commission by the individual fishers. Number 1114 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN asked if the language on Section 3, page 2, since this is not a permanent limited entry but a moratorium, get the authority from the legislature to invoke a permanent limited entry. Number 1123 MR. ANDERSON responded that the difference between a moratorium and a limited entry is, a limited entry is a permanent piece of legislation, and a moratorium is a sunsetted opportunity to place a participation cap on a fishery that has been brought to the commission as one that has a resource with an economic viability concern. It gives the commission four years to decide whether or not a permanent limited entry program is proper for the fishery. He stated that in the Southeast Dungeness Crab Fishery this is what we had, which worked well, resulting in a management plan in that fishery. Number 1242 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN asked what has been repealed in Section 10. Number 1255 MR. ANDERSON replied that he would have to get back to Representative Ogan on that. Number 1274 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN stated that everyone has to understand that this is not a limited entry issue, it is a moratorium issue and how it is applied to the fisheries that are in crisis. Number 1286 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN stated that he would have to debate that point and would have to call the moratorium a temporary limited entry. You limited that amount of people that can fish so we are giving the commission the ability to declare a temporary limited entry. Number 1308 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN replied if there is a fishery that is in crisis how would you do it. The objective of a moratorium is to be able to still have a fishery and not let it go rampant and destroy itself. He asked if the moratorium has to go the full four years. Number 1332 MR. ANDERSON responded that it does not have to go the full four years, but in the past in the Dungeness Crab Fishery, the Korean Hair Crab Fishery and now with the HB 141 the scallop moratorium bill, four years has been the acceptable standard. Number 1362 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN stated that for the record Section 16.05.050.19 explains the powers and duties of the commissioner but not by way of limitation the following duties. It states, "to petition the Alaska Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission, unless the Board of Fisheries disapproves the petition". He stated that it apparently repeals the Board of Fisheries ability to disapprove the petition. Number 1420 MR. ANDERSON replied that right now it is required that the individual go to the commissioner of the Department of Fish and Game, who has to go to the Board of Fisheries, who has to go back to the commissioner to give the okay, who then petitions to the commission. He stated that the commissioner is repealing those steps. We want the public to come directly to the commission and we are still required to ask the Department of Fish and Game their opinions. He stated that the commission is not attempting to wipe out the association that we have with the Department of Fish and Game, rather have it in a more direct line. Number 1481 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN asked, "So you are asking for not only the legislature to give you the authority to close this whenever you want but you are also asking to have the fish board not have a say in it." Number 1500 MR. ANDERSON replied that the Board of Fisheries always had a say in any fish management program that is produced in the state of Alaska. He stated that we live within the Board of Fisheries qualifications that they put on a fishery as they are responsible for the methods and means of capture of fish. Number 1525 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN stated that AS 16.05.251(g) states "The board shall consider whether the commissioner, in support of the request for approval of the petition, has adequately shown that the fishery meets the requirement for a moratorium on new entrants under AS 16.05.050. The board by a majority vote of its members at the meeting when the petition must be considered shall approve or disapprove the petition." Basically we are eliminating the Board of Fisheries from this process and that would take another system of checks and balances out. Number 1572 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN asked if there was any part of the bill that bring in the Board of Fisheries and the Department of Fish and Game back in. Number 1581 MR. ANDERSON replied that in any study that the commission does, they have to answer to the courts. The commission has to go through the process to make their findings before they can declare a moratorium on a fishery. He stated that the very reason the commission is asking that the statutes be changed is because the Board of Fisheries should not have that authority to vote on what the commission does. He stated that this step is unnecessary. Number 1648 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN stated that he disagrees with that statement. The Board of Fisheries should be in the loop. Number 1661 MR. ANDERSON replied that they are in the loop at this time even within this bill. CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN asked if he could explain that. MR. ANDERSON responded that on page 1, line 13, it states "To allow time for the commission, in consultation with the Department of Fish and Game and the Board of Fisheries, to investigate and evaluate management alternatives, including establishment of a maximum number of entry permits under AS 16.43.240." Number 1702 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN stated that if the Board of Fisheries is consulted and they think that it is a bad idea, the commission can still go through with it anyway. Number 1716 MR. ANDERSON replied that it would be the same response if everything the Board of Fisheries were to do and we had the authority to re-look at what they did. He stated that the commission has an effective team now with the Board of Fisheries and the Department of Fish and Game, who all shares one common goal which is protection of the resource for sustained yield management. He stated that the places that we differ are that we look at economic viability. The Board of Fisheries cannot look at economic viability. The Board of Fisheries can look at methods and means of capture, the commission cannot look at methods and means of capture. The Department of Fish and Game cannot look at those two things but they have to manage what the Board of Fisheries puts down as the rules. He stated that there are checks and balances and we have developed effective management plans. Number 1824 DEAN PADDOCK, Representative, Alaska Bristol Bay Drift Netters Association, stated that many of the members are opposed to limited entry in principle but support it as a matter of reality and is something that is desperately needed and in most cases has arrived on the scene too little and too late. Part of the reason for that is wrapped up in the bill. He stated that the association's biggest criticism is the arcane and obtuse process that the commission had to go through to deal with situations crying for attention. He stated that the fisheries are so overcrowded is witness to the fact that we are usually a year late and many dollars short. The necessary window of opportunity which the Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission has had to have in order to take a desired action has frequently been too small for them to assist, in a timely fashion, in making what was necessary to happen, actually happen. He stated that this bill will allow the process to work with a smaller window of opportunity. Declaring a moratorium is something that has proven to be time consuming and difficult. He referred to Mr. Anderson's statement that the process can work very well, the fisherman see nothing circuitous outlined in the present statute. He pointed out to Representative Ogan Section 2 (b)(1), lines 13 through 14, subsection 2, page 2, line 3 and Section 4 (d)(2) which offers more than adequate opportunity for input by the Department of Fish and Game due to the nature of the way these consultations do in fact work. He stated that the association recommends the favorable consideration of this measure. Number 2235 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN asked what the wishes of the committee are. He asked of Representative Ogan needed further information on the sections being repealed in the bill. Number 2263 REPRESENTATIVE OGAN replied that he still has some misgivings about it but not enough to hold the bill up. Number 2277 REPRESENTATIVE HODGINS made a motion to move HB 204, 0-LS0802\A, with individual recommendations and the attached fiscal note. Number 2280 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN asked if there were any objections, hearing none HB 204 was moved out of the House Special Committee on Fisheries. ADJOURNMENT Number 2299 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN adjourned the House Special Committee on Fisheries at 6:43 p.m.