Kenai legislators question Board of Fisheries decision

Peninsula lawmakers question actions by Board of Fisheries

State lawmakers from the Kenai Peninsula have banded together to question a recent Board of Fisheries proceeding, according to a press release.

An unexpected vote by the Alaska Board of Fisheries, which took place with little notice, decided to move the 2020 regulatory meeting from the Kenai Peninsula to Anchorage. The meeting was originally going to be held in Anchorage, but a March 2018 vote moved the meeting to the Kenai-Soldotna area, the Clarion previously reported.

In a Wednesday letter, the peninsula delegation outlined concerns the “Alaska Board of Fisheries may have intentionally circumvented the public input process that is normally required when deliberations on meeting locations are made.”

“Transparency, integrity and process are imperative in the effort to restore public trust,” said Sen. Peter Micciche (R-Soldotna) in the release. “The people of Alaska deserve better. The public process and the Board’s own procedures were circumvented and Kenai Peninsula officials were disrespectfully misled at the January 18th meeting. The request from the entire Kenai Peninsula Legislative delegation is simple and united: Rescind the actions to move the 2020 BoF Upper Cook Inlet Finfish meeting from the Kenai and reschedule a meeting following BoF procedures. Rebuilding trust must include facing and hearing from the Alaskans we serve.”

At the start of the Arctic-Yukon-Kuskokwim finfish meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 15, Board chair Reed Moriskey mentioned that the Upper Cook Inlet meeting location would be discussed. On Friday, the board reversed their March 2018 decision with a 4-3 vote, bringing the 2020 meeting back to Anchorage, the Clarion previously reported.

“There are not enough words to express my disappointment and frustrations with the Board of Fisheries. It is completely disingenuous to tell people who have driven to Anchorage from the Kenai Peninsula to testify that there would be no action taken regarding the 2020 UCI BoF meeting location. Then, to turn around and have the issue addressed after their departure,” said Representative Gary Knopp (R-Kenai/Soldotna).

The letter requests that the board allows the public adequate notice to revisit the issue.

More in News

In this March 19, 2020, file photo Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, talks with reporters following a Republican policy lunch on Capitol Hill in Washington. Murkowski acknowledged Thursday, June 4, that she’s “struggling” over whether she can support President Donald Trump given his handling of the virus and race crises shaking the United States. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)
Mattis emboldens GOPers to criticize Trump

Murkowski on Thursday called the rebuke by Trump’s first Pentagon chief “necessary and overdue.”

A pair of tents sits at the Infinity Pools above the Tutka Backdoor Trail in Kachemak Bay State Park on July 9, 2019. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
State officials urge Alaskans to get outside

During a virtual town hall, commissioners fielded questions from the public on state recreation.

COVID-19. (CDC)
Nonresident COVID-19 cases nearly double; 8 residents test positive

Seventeen of the 18 new nonresident cases are workers in the seafood industry.

Photo provided by Ocean Bluff B&B
                                Tammy Kehrer of Palmer sits on the deck overlooking Cook Inlet at Ocean Bluff B&B in Kasilof. Kehrer is the daughter of owner Kathy Carlisle.
B&B bookings take hit due to virus

Owners have been getting feelers from in-state visitors, but so far reservations have been rare.

A king salmon during the 67th annual Golden North Salmon Derby at the Don D. Statter Memorial Boat Harbor in August 2013. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire
Low king counts result in closures on southern Kenai Peninsula

As of Sunday, video weirs and sonar had counted 184 king salmon at the Anchor River.

Gov. Mike Dunleavy speaks during a Friday, March 27, 2020 press conference in the Atwood Building in Anchorage, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Office of the Governor)
Revised travel mandates to begin Friday

Those arriving from outside the state must self-quarantine, but revisions allow for exceptions.

Nikiski Fire Station #2, seen here on July 15, 2019 in Nikiski, Alaska. (Photo by Brian Mazurek/Peninsula Clarion)
3 in Nikiski fire service test positive for virus

11 members of the department have been quarantined due to the possibility of COVID-19 exposure.

The Devil’s Creek Trail in Chugach National Forest, seen June 15, 2018. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
During pandemic, Chugach National Forest mostly stays the same

One of the differences will be in how much volunteer help the forest gets.

In front and from left to right, Aaron Ford, Karianna Ford and Jenni Stowe hold signs at a protest on Sunday, May 30, 2020, at WKFL Park in Homer, Alaska, in support of people of color who have been the subject of police violence, including George Floyd, a man who died May 25, 2020, in a police encounter in Minneapolis, Minnesota. In addition to the “We (heart) our po po” sign — “po po” is slang for “police” — there also was a sign that read “Thank you HPD.” (Photo by Michael Armstrong/Homer News)
Homer residents organize multiple demonstrations on racial injustice

Gatherings, protests and demonstrations have been held in Alaska from Anchorage to Haines to Bethel.

Most Read