Legislature(2005 - 2006)CAPITOL 124

04/11/2005 08:30 AM FISHERIES


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* first hearing in first committee of referral
+ teleconferenced
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
*+ HB 256 RUTH BURNETT SPORT FISH HATCHERY TELECONFERENCED
Moved Out of Committee
*+ HB 251 COMMERCIAL FISHING MULTIPLE PERMIT HOLDER TELECONFERENCED
Moved Out of Committee
Bills Previously Heard/Scheduled
                    ALASKA STATE LEGISLATURE                                                                                  
              HOUSE SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON FISHERIES                                                                            
                         April 11, 2005                                                                                         
                           8:44 a.m.                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS PRESENT                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
Representative Bill Thomas, Co-Chair                                                                                            
Representative John Harris                                                                                                      
Representative Jim Elkins                                                                                                       
Representative Peggy Wilson                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
MEMBERS ABSENT                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
Representative Gabrielle LeDoux, Co-Chair                                                                                       
Representative Mary Kapsner                                                                                                     
Representative Woodie Salmon                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
COMMITTEE CALENDAR                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 256                                                                                                              
"An Act naming the Ruth Burnett Sport Fish Hatchery in                                                                          
Fairbanks."                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED HB 256 OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HOUSE BILL NO. 251                                                                                                              
"An Act authorizing the Board of Fisheries to adopt regulations                                                                 
regarding fishing by a person who holds two entry permits for a                                                                 
salmon fishery."                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
     - MOVED HB 251 OUT OF COMMITTEE                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
PREVIOUS COMMITTEE ACTION                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                              
BILL: HB 256                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: RUTH BURNETT SPORT FISH HATCHERY                                                                                   
SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) RAMRAS                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
04/06/05       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
04/06/05       (H)       FSH, RES                                                                                               
04/11/05       (H)       FSH AT 8:30 AM CAPITOL 124                                                                             
04/11/05       (H)       RES AT 1:00 PM CAPITOL 124                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
BILL: HB 251                                                                                                                  
SHORT TITLE: COMMERCIAL FISHING MULTIPLE PERMIT HOLDER                                                                          
SPONSOR(S): REPRESENTATIVE(S) SAMUELS                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
04/05/05       (H)       READ THE FIRST TIME - REFERRALS                                                                        
04/05/05       (H)       FSH, RES                                                                                               
04/11/05       (H)       FSH AT 8:30 AM CAPITOL 124                                                                             
04/11/05       (H)       RES AT 1:00 PM CAPITOL 124                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
WITNESS REGISTER                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE JAY RAMRAS                                                                                                       
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Presented HB 256 as sponsor.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE RALPH SAMUELS                                                                                                    
Alaska State Legislature                                                                                                        
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Presented HB 251 as sponsor.                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
MIKE SAUNDERS, President                                                                                                        
Lynn Canal Gillnetters Association                                                                                              
Haines, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in opposition to HB 251.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
CHARLES TREINEN                                                                                                                 
(No address provided)                                                                                                           
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 251.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
JASON KOONTZ                                                                                                                    
Homer, Alaska                                                                                                                   
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 251.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SIMON SCHAAD                                                                                                                    
Homer, Alaska                                                                                                                   
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 251.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
TIM MIKKELSEN                                                                                                                   
Homer, Alaska                                                                                                                   
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 251.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
GERALD GUGEL                                                                                                                    
Homer, Alaska                                                                                                                   
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 251.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
PETER THOMPSON                                                                                                                  
Kodiak, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 251.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
LEROY COSSETTE                                                                                                                  
Kodiak, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 251.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
BOB THORSTENSON, President                                                                                                      
United Fishermen of Alaska                                                                                                      
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 251.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
SCOTT McALLISTER                                                                                                                
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 251.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
FRANK HOMAN, Commissioner                                                                                                       
Commercial Fisheries Entry Commission                                                                                           
Alaska Department of Fish and Game                                                                                              
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 251.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
MAC MEINERS                                                                                                                     
Juneau, Alaska                                                                                                                  
POSITION STATEMENT:  Testified in support of HB 251.                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
ACTION NARRATIVE                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  BILL  THOMAS  called the  House  Special  Committee  on                                                             
Fisheries  meeting  to  order at  8:44:23  AM.    Representatives                                                               
Thomas, Elkins,  Wilson, and Harris  were present at the  call to                                                               
order.                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
[Due to  technical difficulties, the recording  begins at 8:46:44                                                               
AM.]                                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
HB 256-RUTH BURNETT SPORT FISH HATCHERY                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR THOMAS announced that the  first order of business would                                                               
be HOUSE  BILL NO.  256, "An  Act naming  the Ruth  Burnett Sport                                                               
Fish Hatchery in Fairbanks."                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  JAY RAMRAS,  Alaska State  Legislature, presented                                                               
HB 256  as sponsor.   He explained that  the bill would  name the                                                               
proposed new  sport fish hatchery  in Fairbanks the  Ruth Burnett                                                               
Sport Fish Hatchery.                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HARRIS asked Representative  Ramras to provide the                                                               
committee with some background information on Ms. Burnett.                                                                      
                                                                                                                                
8:46:33 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE RAMRAS  pointed out that Ms.  Burnett, late former                                                               
mayor of  Fairbanks, originally conceived  of the idea of  a fish                                                               
hatchery there.   She also worked as the Fairbanks  aide for U.S.                                                               
Senator  Ted  Stevens.    He noted  that  the  proposed  hatchery                                                               
location is near  Ms. Burnett's former home.   He commented, "She                                                               
one  of the  greatest ladies  that I  ever had  the privilege  of                                                               
knowing through my youth and young adulthood."                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE ELKINS  remarked, "She led  the fight to  clean up                                                               
that  area  down  around  the  Chena  River,  ...  and  was  very                                                               
successful."                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
8:48:21 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE WILSON  moved to  report HB  256 out  of committee                                                               
with  individual  recommendations  and  the  accompanying  fiscal                                                               
notes.   There being no objection,  HB 256 was reported  from the                                                               
House Special Committee on Fisheries.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
HB 251-COMMERCIAL FISHING MULTIPLE PERMIT HOLDER                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
8:48:40 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR THOMAS announced  that the next order  of business would                                                               
be  HOUSE  BILL  NO.  251,  "An  Act  authorizing  the  Board  of                                                               
Fisheries to adopt regulations regarding  fishing by a person who                                                               
holds two entry permits for a salmon fishery."                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
8:49:01 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   RALPH   SAMUELS,   Alaska   State   Legislature,                                                               
presented HB 251 as sponsor.  He explained:                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
     [The bill]  would give some authorization  to the Board                                                                    
     of  Fisheries to  assign fishing  privileges for  those                                                                    
     who already hold  one permit in a  salmon fishery; they                                                                    
     would  be  able to  buy  a  second permit.  ...  Market                                                                    
     forces  already prompt  permit holders  to buy  or sell                                                                    
     permits.   This bill would  not require anybody  to buy                                                                    
     or sell a  permit. ... It would add  another option for                                                                    
     specific  fisheries  to   deal  with  situations  where                                                                    
     salmon prices  are falling,  and that's  contributed to                                                                    
     large numbers  of outstanding permits.   It would allow                                                                    
     the  [Board  of  Fisheries]  to have  another  tool  to                                                                    
     reduce the amount  of gear in the water ...  and try to                                                                    
     consolidate  some of  the fisheries  a little  bit. ...                                                                    
     I've  talked  to [Co-Chair  Thomas]  quite  a bit  here                                                                    
     about some potential amendments.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
8:50:19 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE  HARRIS asked  if the  bill has  a lot  of support                                                               
from United Fishermen of Alaska (UFA) or other fishing groups.                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE SAMUELS  replied, "UFA talked  to me about it.   I                                                               
made some calls to some folks  back in my hometown out in Bristol                                                               
Bay, and  I think  mostly people  are going  to be  supportive of                                                               
this."                                                                                                                          
                                                                                                                                
8:51:10 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MIKE  SAUNDERS  commented,  "I'd  like  to  make  sure  that  the                                                               
information  that was  sent to  [Representative] LeDoux's  office                                                               
from the department  regarding this idea when it was  a [Board of                                                               
Fisheries] proposal  number 378 is  submitted as evidence  to the                                                               
committee."                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                
CO-CHAIR  THOMAS replied  that the  committee did  not have  this                                                               
information.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. SAUNDERS  stated, "I'm  in opposition to  [HB 251]  because I                                                               
see  this as  granting  the [Board  of  Fisheries] authority  for                                                               
social  engineering,   and  the   outcome  of  this   bill  would                                                               
redistribution  of   wealth  amongst   fishermen,  at   least  in                                                               
Southeast Alaska."   He remarked that  he didn't want to  have to                                                               
buy another permit  in order to compete with  other fishermen who                                                               
have two permits;  many people in Haines cannot afford  to buy an                                                               
additional permit.                                                                                                              
                                                                                                                                
8:53:12 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE   HARRIS   asked   Mr.   Saunders   who   he   was                                                               
representing.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR. SAUNDERS replied  that he is the president of  the Lynn Canal                                                               
Gillnetters  Association.   He noted  that when  this idea  was a                                                               
Board  of Fisheries  proposal, he  ran a  letter-writing campaign                                                               
that produced about 30 letters in opposition to the idea.                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
8:53:55 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
CHARLES TREINEN  testified in support of  HB 251.  He  noted that                                                               
he is  a fisherman  involved in  several different  fisheries for                                                               
over 25 years.   He said, "It's a market-based  way to reduce the                                                               
number of  permits and reduce the  number of latent permits  in a                                                               
fishery.   Latent permits are  a real problem  and are a  drag on                                                               
investing in a fishery."  He continued:                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     If a  person ... or  a group  doesn't want any  kind of                                                                    
     permit-stacking, they're capable of  opposing it at the                                                                    
     [Board  of  Fisheries]  level and  there  are  numerous                                                                    
     advantages to  having that tool  in the toolbox  of the                                                                    
     [Board of Fisheries] in a  situation where you have too                                                                    
     many permits, a lot of  latent permits, and you need to                                                                    
     have  a  way to  consolidate  permits  without doing  a                                                                    
     buyback.   Buybacks  are very  difficult  to enact  and                                                                    
     costly   for   government   and  maybe   not   feasible                                                                    
     financially  for  the  ...  people  that  stay  in  the                                                                    
     fishery.                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
MR. TREINEN explained  that in Bristol Bay, two  permits can fish                                                               
on a single vessel but the  vessel is only allowed one-third more                                                               
gear.   Therefore  there is  less gear  in the  water than  there                                                               
would be if there were two vessels with one permit each.                                                                        
                                                                                                                                
8:58:41 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
JASON  KOONTZ stated  that he  is  a commercial  fisherman and  a                                                               
tender operator  in Bristol Bay.   He testified in support  of HB
251.  He commented:                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
     [The bill]  would allow  the guys  to use  some permits                                                                    
     that aren't being  utilized.  It would  allow some guys                                                                    
     to increase their production.   With the lower price of                                                                    
     salmon, it's  important that guys are  able to generate                                                                    
     some income  to really  make it a  viable fishery.   If                                                                    
     it's  not viable  guys like  me with  a tender  are not                                                                    
     going to  be able  to participate.  ... We  should give                                                                    
     the [Board of Fisheries] as  many tools as they need to                                                                    
     revamp our salmon industry.                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
MR.  KOONTZ  emphasized  that  young people  need  this  bill  as                                                               
encouragement to  stay in the  fishery, and that a  buyback would                                                               
eliminate the possibility for young people to enter the fishery.                                                                
                                                                                                                                
9:01:05 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SIMON  SCHAAD, stated  that  he is  a junior  at  the Homer  High                                                               
School and a permit holder in  Bristol Bay.  He commented that he                                                               
supports the  bill because,  "it would really  help the  Board of                                                               
Fisheries  for  the future  of  the  fishery.  ... And  it's  the                                                               
cheapest and  quickest way to  reduce the overpopulation  of this                                                               
fishery."                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:01:50 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
TIM MIKKELSEN  stated that he  and his  wife fish two  permits in                                                               
Bristol Bay, and they support HB 251.  He said:                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                
     We  like [the  bill] better  than a  buyback system  in                                                                    
     that we've already  paid for two permits  and we'd hate                                                                    
     to be  taxed or something  to get rid of  more permits.                                                                    
     It will  reduce the amount of  gear in the water,  so I                                                                    
     believe it will be a benefit  to those who buy a second                                                                    
     permit and  to the  people who  don't have  two permits                                                                    
     just because there'll  be less gear in the  water.  And                                                                    
     it  would   also  just  be  easier   to  make  business                                                                    
     decisions on the  fishery....  If you  have permits out                                                                    
     there that  people can  grab up when  it looks  good it                                                                    
     takes away the  profitable years for those  who stay in                                                                    
     it.   Every time  it looks  like a good  run or  a good                                                                    
     price, then  a bunch more  people jump in and  it still                                                                    
     makes everything  marginal; we know in  fishing we have                                                                    
     bad years,  and it's nice  to have some good  years and                                                                    
     be able  to count on that  rather than it just  kind of                                                                    
     getting wiped  away by people  who want to take  a shot                                                                    
     in the dark.                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                
9:03:34 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
GERALD GUGEL stated  that he is a third  generation fisherman who                                                               
started  salmon fishing  in 1953.   He  noted that  he has  three                                                               
herring  permits,  a Kodiak  salmon  permit,  and a  Bristol  Bay                                                               
permit.   He testified  in support of  HB 251.   He said  that he                                                               
supported the move to limited  entry fishing permits, however, he                                                               
opined  that most  areas ended  up with  too many  permits.   The                                                               
fisheries  have   been  poor  lately,   and  he   emphasized  the                                                               
importance  of  having  several  permits   so  that  one  can  be                                                               
flexible.                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:07:36 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. GUGEL continued:                                                                                                            
                                                                                                                                
     What I have  seen here is that many  people are fishing                                                                    
     in different salmon fisheries.   The thing is that many                                                                    
     of them  are actually  doing it  illegally, one  way or                                                                    
     another.  So there's a  problem that's presented by the                                                                    
     way the  situation is right  now. ... What I  have done                                                                    
     it  the past  with my  seven kids:  now my  Bristol Bay                                                                    
     permit  has  actually gone  from  Laura,  it's gone  to                                                                    
     Esther, it's  been in Samuel's  name....  With  cod and                                                                    
     crab  and  all  these  other  areas  going  [Individual                                                                    
     Fishing  Quota (IFQ)],  the ability  to be  able to  be                                                                    
     flexible is becoming more and  more difficult. ... [The                                                                    
     bill  is]  an awesome  way  to  control the  number  of                                                                    
     permits.  One of the  things that bothers me right now:                                                                    
     in Kodiak we're  down to 100 boats but I  know that the                                                                    
     minute there's any real sparkle  at all in the fishery,                                                                    
     you've got 200 permits sitting  out there that are very                                                                    
     easy to move  right back into the fishery.   And so the                                                                    
     potential  of  becoming  financially viable  stands  in                                                                    
     jeopardy  with those  permits drifting  out there.  ...                                                                    
     Any way  here by which  we can eliminate some  of those                                                                    
     permits  and give  a  slight benefit  to  them I  think                                                                    
     would really  help the system,  much better than  a tax                                                                    
     situation, much better than a buyback program.                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
9:09:54 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
PETER THOMPSON stated that he has lived and fished in Kodiak for                                                                
25 years and also has held a Bristol Bay salmon permit for 18                                                                   
years.  He testified in support of HB 251.  He commented:                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     The salmon  industry has been in  economic disaster for                                                                    
     the last  five years or  so and we  do need to  look at                                                                    
     anything  and   everything  that   can  make   it  more                                                                    
     economically viable  for those  that attempt  to remain                                                                    
     in  the  salmon business.    Fleet  consolidation is  a                                                                    
     concept  whose time  has  come.   Most  of the  limited                                                                    
     entry fisheries in the state  are plagued by having too                                                                    
     many  permits.   Last  year  the [Commercial  Fisheries                                                                    
     Entry  Commission  (CFEC)]  came out  with  an  optimum                                                                    
     numbers  study  that  indicated   that  the  number  of                                                                    
     Bristol Bay salmon drift net  permits should be reduced                                                                    
     by as much as half.   An example of how permit-stacking                                                                    
     regulations  can  be  applied  is  available  from  the                                                                    
     Bristol  Bay salmon  drift net  fishery.   In 2003  the                                                                    
     [Board of Fisheries] changed  a regulation that allowed                                                                    
     a vessel to  fish one-third more gear as  long as there                                                                    
     were  two permit  holders on  board.   Specifically the                                                                    
     regulation allowed the  double-permitted vessel to fish                                                                    
     200  fathoms  of  gear  instead  of  the  standard  150                                                                    
     fathoms.  As  a consequence, instead of  300 fathoms of                                                                    
     net in the water for  two permits, only 200 fathoms was                                                                    
     fished.    Because  there  is  a  significant  cost  to                                                                    
     getting an  additional vessel in  the water, it  can be                                                                    
     cost  effective to  get  an  incremental fishing  power                                                                    
     increase even if it is less  than a whole gear unit for                                                                    
     an individual vessel.   As a tool  for reducing fishing                                                                    
     effort  and  improving  the economics  of  the  fishing                                                                    
     fleet  the Bristol  Bay permit-stacking  regulation was                                                                    
     effective in reducing effort  during its inaugural 2004                                                                    
     season.                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
9:11:57 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MR. THOMPSON continued:                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
     The requirement to have two  separate permit holders on                                                                    
     board is cumbersome, likely to  create conflict, as two                                                                    
     captains   on  a   boat  doesn't   work,  and   creates                                                                    
     incentives to  engage in gray market  permit trades....                                                                    
     I also want to stress  that permit-stacking options are                                                                    
     much more flexible than  many other fleet consolidation                                                                    
     options such as permit  buybacks.  They're market-based                                                                    
     and   reversible,   because   an   individual   fishing                                                                    
     operation could easily  choose to go back  to using one                                                                    
     permit at  any time  and be unburdened  of the  cost of                                                                    
     owning  two.   For those  who are  concerned about  the                                                                    
     prospect of escalating permit prices,  the issue is not                                                                    
     really the permit cost; it's how  to pay for it.  There                                                                    
     is clearly a need to  make commercial fishing a vibrant                                                                    
     and  viable contributor  to the  individual businesses,                                                                    
     communities, and  the state.   Eliminating  a statutory                                                                    
     impediment  to  permit  stacking simply  gives  fishing                                                                    
     businesses another  tool to  use in  making operational                                                                    
     decisions.    All  vessels will  share  in  having  few                                                                    
     vessels participating through stacking of permits.                                                                         
                                                                                                                                
9:15:07 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
LEROY COSSETTE stated  that he lives in Kodiak and  has fished in                                                               
Bristol Bay since 1966.   He testified in support of  HB 251.  He                                                               
clarified that the  bill would reduce the amount  of fishing gear                                                               
used by  66 percent for every  permit that is stacked,  which for                                                               
100 boats  is about 10,000  fathoms of gear.   He said,  "We need                                                               
the money  in Bristol  Bay; it's down  to sharecroppers  wages up                                                               
there now.  This is the way  the legislature can help us put some                                                               
real economics  back in Bristol  Bay like we  had in the  ... 80s                                                               
and 90s."                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:16:33 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
BOB   THORSTENSON,  President,   United   Fishermen  of   Alaska,                                                               
testified in  support of  HB 251.   He  commented that  there are                                                               
different levels  of interest in  the bill in different  areas of                                                               
the  state, noting  that people  in Southeast  are generally  not                                                               
interested in  the idea  while people in  Kodiak and  Bristol Bay                                                               
are interested.  He said:                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
     We're  not in  favor of  this for  the whole  state, of                                                                    
     course,  and  we're  not  going  to  impose  this  upon                                                                    
     anybody who doesn't want it.   It's going to have to go                                                                    
     through   a   very   rigorous  [Board   of   Fisheries]                                                                    
     restructuring program that's  being implemented, so ...                                                                    
     this will be  years out; it'll take awhile  for this to                                                                    
     actually take place.                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                
9:17:51 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
SCOTT McALLISTER stated that he  has been purse seining primarily                                                               
in Southeast Alaska for 30 years.   He testified in support of HB
251.  He said:                                                                                                                  
                                                                                                                                
     In  recent  years  latency  has  become  a  very,  very                                                                    
     prevalent  problem within  the  fisheries.   It's  very                                                                    
     difficult to  make decisions both  on how  you're going                                                                    
     to ...  make future decisions for  quality improvements                                                                    
     [and]  efficiency  upgrades  within  your  fishery  ...                                                                    
     knowing that there's a lot  of latency out there within                                                                    
     the permit structure  of a fishery....   So this [bill]                                                                    
     gives the  [Board of Fisheries] an  opportunity to deal                                                                    
     with  not  just  the  latency problem  but  with  these                                                                    
     efficiency problems or quality problems....                                                                                
                                                                                                                                
9:19:39 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
FRANK   HOMAN,    Commissioner,   Commercial    Fisheries   Entry                                                               
Commission,  Alaska Department  of  Fish and  Game, testified  in                                                               
support of HB 251.  He said:                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
     The  commission supports  the concept  of moving  ahead                                                                    
     with  permit-stacking....   It's  another  tool in  the                                                                    
     toolbox, and the thing that  would be necessary for any                                                                    
     fishery: it's not  going to be imposed on  anybody.  It                                                                    
     would have to  go to the [Board of  Fisheries] and they                                                                    
     would do  an analysis  of the  fishery and  take public                                                                    
     testimony, and so each fishery  would be a case-by-case                                                                    
     basis.    They'd  have  the  opportunity  during  their                                                                    
     analysis  and  discussion  ... to  monitor  any  permit                                                                    
     stacking  to see  how it  develops in  the marketplace,                                                                    
     and  who's  buying and  selling  permits,  and how  the                                                                    
     affect is on the latent permits.   So I think there's a                                                                    
     lot  of  safeguards   in  it  and  there's   a  lot  of                                                                    
     opportunity to try a new tool.                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                
9:21:13 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
MAC MEINERS stated that he is a permit holder in Kodiak and                                                                     
Southeast Alaska.  He testified in support of HB 251.                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
9:21:38 AM                                                                                                                    
                                                                                                                                
REPRESENTATIVE HARRIS  moved to  report HB  251 out  of committee                                                               
with  individual  recommendations  and  the  accompanying  fiscal                                                               
notes.   There being no objection,  HB 251 was reported  from the                                                               
House Special Committee on Fisheries.                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
ADJOURNMENT                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                
There being no further business before the committee, the House                                                                 
Special Committee on Fisheries meeting was adjourned at 9:21:47                                                               
AM.                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                
                                                                                                                                

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