Dipnetting from boats getting more dangerous

In a July 22 letter to the editor in the Alaska Dispatch News, Marv Greene was right in his assessment of the dangers of dipnetting from a boat on the Kenai River. More and more Alaskans are dipnetting every year. My friends and I have been dipnetting the Kenai River since the inception of that personal use fishery. We have seen the fishery evolve from merely chaotic to deadly dangerous. Allowing boats of all sizes and horsepower to dip net the Kenai River is a bad idea and it is getting worse as the numbers increase. Large jet powered boats have no business in this fishery. They cannot maneuver well at slow speed and are a menace to all smaller boats. Larger boats, especially inboard jets, also throw bigger wakes causing unsafe boating conditions and increased bank erosion. A 50 horsepower limit for all noncommercial boats below the Warren Ames Bridge makes sense. As Mr. Greene suggested, it would be a quick, easy and practical way to decrease the likelihood of a boating disaster on the Kenai. It is long past time to amend the Alaska State Parks boating regulations for this valuable, but dangerous, fishery.