State Fix on Groundfish Tax Collection Still a Work in Progress

Undercurrent News, June 15, 2016
By DJ Summers

Editor’s note: this story has been updated with exact numbers provided by Kurt Iverson.

KODIAK — A fishing tax rate glitch has new data that will increase state revenue in 2016, but the fix still needs work.

“I don’t think this issue’s going to go away,” said Kurt Iverson, a research analyst for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

Iverson said 2015 data has raised the price for formerly undervalued fish. The state won’t make the millions it believed the fishery is worth, but the aggregate tax increase is worth more than a half-million dollars…. Continue Reading

N. Pacific Council Raises Pollock TACs by 2.34%, Flatfish Slightly Down, Cod Steady

Seafoodnews.com, December 11, 2015
By Peggy Parker

The North Pacific Fishery Management Council set 2016 pollock TACs at 1.341 million metric tons Thursday, up 30,643 metric tons from last year. Pollock TAC in the Aleutian Islands and Bogoslof area increased from 19,100 metric tons to 19,500 for 2016. This was less than the pollock increase of 64,000 tons recommended by the Advisory Panel, which voted to recommend a 1.374 million ton quota.

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Alaska Working on State Flatfish Tax Fix to Capture Foregone Revenue

Seafoodnews.com [Alaska Journal of Commerce], December 10, 2015
By DJ Summers

A state tax rate glitch let groundfish trawlers off the hook for more than $10 million of fishery taxes in the last half decade, and there’s no concrete fix just yet.
The fishery resource landing tax taxes groundfish based on ex-vessel price. Processors turn flatfish caught as bycatch into low-value fishmeal, so the only known ex-vessel price for certain flatfish species is artificially low. Nine species have this price uncertainty, but most flatfish volume comes from yellowfin sole and Atka mackerel…. Continue Reading

North Pacific Council to Talk Halibut Rules, Groundfish Quota

Photo - Rashah McChesney/Peninsula Clarion

Alaska Journal of Commerce, December 2, 2015
By DJ Summer

Photo - Rashah McChesney/Peninsula Clarion

Photo – Rashah McChesney/Peninsula Clarion

Dave Jacobs, left, and Steve Curl watch as Anthony Ballam lowers a halibut into the hold of the Independence in Cook Inlet. Cook Inlet, which is in Area 3A for charter halibut removals, has a recommended cut in harvest from 2015 according to the scientists at the International Pacific Halibut Commission. The North Pacific Fishery Management Council meets this month in Anchorage to set charter harvest rules for 2016…. Continue Reading

Alaska Flatfish Catchers Take Hit After NPFMC Bycatch Vote

SeafoodSource.com, June 10, 2015
By Christine Blank, contributing editor

Flatfish catcher-processors are worried about the impact on their business and jobs in the sector after the North Pacific Fishery Management Council voted to reduce halibut bycatch by 25 percent…. Continue Reading

Trawler Representatives Say 50% Halibut Bycatch Reduction is Neither Fair Nor Equitable

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Letters], May 15, 2015
By Chris Woodley

In keeping with our policy on Halibut, both Peggy and I have comments on this letter from Chris Woodley, who is Executive Director of the Groundfish Forum representing the Amendment 80 fleet:

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How Alaska’s Amendment 80 Fleet Has Managed Halibut Bycatch

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Opinion], February 16, 2015
By Capt. TJ Durnan

Folllowing is a letter to the editor by Capt. TJ Durnan, skipper of the the F/V Constellation a member vessel of the Amendment 80 fleet. Capt. Durnan writes about the measures the fleet has taken to reduce its halibut bycatch levels. Capt. Durnan’s letter is in response to some scrutiny the Amendment 80 fleet has faced with the halibut bycatch issue currently before the International Pacific Halibut Commission and the North Pacific Fishery Management Council. – MRContinue Reading

Amendment 80 Fleet Takes Further Measures to Reduce Halibut Bycatch

SEAFOODNEWS.COM [Opinion], January 28, 2015
By Chris Woodley

Chris Woodley is the executive director of Groundfish Forum, which represents most of the Amendment 80 fleet

With recent evidence showing a possible decrease in the Bering Sea halibut fishery allocation this year, there has been a growing concern about halibut bycatch and discard mortality and what to do about it. Both groundfish and halibut fishermen will be affected by the outcomes…. Continue Reading

Alaska’s Flatfish Trawl Fleet is an Important Economic Contributor to Reducing Halibut Bycatch

Pacific Fishing [Commentary], January 2015
By Chris Woodley

Click here to read what Chris Woodley, Executive Director of Groundfish Forum says about halibut bycatch and discard mortality.