Federal Special Action Request by the Village of Akiak Public Meeting
A public meeting is scheduled for 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., May 6, 2016, in Akiak to discuss and provide comment on a Temporary Special Action request received by the Federal Subsistence Board, see attachment for additional details. The public can participate by either attending the meeting in person at: the Akiak Community Center 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., May 6, 2016, or by; Teleconference by calling in to: 1-866-864-5314, and entering Passcode# 309186.
This is an important meeting that will “set the stage” for the upcoming fishing season and we encourage people to call in, or attend and voice their opinions. The Napaimute Traditional Council has passed a resolution (summarized below, and attached) expressing their position on FSA16-01.
Summary of Napaimute Resolution 16-08
The Napaimute Traditional Council believes that despite many years of sacrifice by folks up and down the Kuskokwim River to rebuild our Chinook salmon run it is clear that again fishermen will have to be restricted in order to conserve this precious resource, and;
The Napaimute Traditional Council recognizes this year’s Chinook salmon forecasted run size is greater than we have seen in many years, resulting in harvest opportunity that should be better than last year by possibly twice as much, if the run come in as expected, and;
The Napaimute Traditional Council feels that the Federal Permit system implemented over the last two years does not provide for reasonable Chinook salmon harvest opportunity for Federally qualified subsistence users outside the boundaries of the Federal Conservation Unit, and;
The Napaimute Traditional Council believes that co-management (Federal, State, and the Inter Tribal Fisheries Commission) has the highest likelihood of achieving the necessary conservation goals while minimizing the hardships to fishermen by simplifying the management, regulations, and providing for equal harvest opportunity, and;
The Napaimute Traditional Council resolved to: support the request identified in FSA16-01 to limit the salmon fishery to only Federally qualified subsistence users, and;
The Napaimute Traditional Council resolved to: oppose the request identified in FSA16-01 to further limit the pool of users based on the section 804 analysis, and the implementation of an allocation strategy i.e., implementation of a permit system, and;
Additionally the Napaimute Traditional Council resolved that: knowing that management actions to conserve Chinook salmon will be necessary in 2016, and the expressed desire by many fishermen, various advisory groups and fisheries managers is to; co-manage the fishery, simplify regulations, and provide equitable harvest opportunity we suggest the following general guidelines for consideration by Fisheries Managers and Stakeholders in 2016:
- Beginning in May, limit the salmon fishery to only Federally Qualified Subsistence Users.
- For the Kuskokwim River and its tributaries, close the salmon fishery beginning May 20th downstream of the Holitna River, and June 1st upstream of the Holitna.
- In conjunction with the salmon closure: all gill nets (including 4” set nets) will not be allowed in the main stem Kuskokwim River, or any of its salmon tributary until the salmon fishery reopens.
- Reopen the Chinook salmon fishery no sooner than June 12th.
- Salmon spawning tributaries will remain closed after June 12th.
- Manage harvest opportunity using only; time, area, and gear restrictions through the ADF&G emergency order authorities that are consistent with FWS authorities for the entire river.
- Provide unrestricted harvest opportunity after June 12th on the main stem Kuskokwim River that allows for the live release of Chinook salmon, i.e., fishwheel, dip nets, beach sines, rod & reel.
Napaimute appreciates the opinions of all Subsistence Users, and other Stakeholders on the Kuskokwim. It is our sincere wish that we enter this fishing season with a minimum amount of hardship imposed on fishermen while continuing to conserve and rebuild our King salmon stocks.