UFA Welcomes At-Large Board Members and Executive Committee

United Fishermen of Alaska (UFA) is pleased to announce the re-election of Bruce Schactler and the election of Tyson Fick, Melanie Brown, and Cynthia Wallesz to the UFA board of directors as at-large members. Read More…Read More…

UFA Job Posting: Office Manager

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Updated Commercial Fishing Facts

 

As Alaska’s largest private‐sector employer, commercial fishing is a major contributor to employment and wages.  Read More

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Recent News

UFA Legislative Update: May 10, 2019

    Dear UFA Members and Friends,

    Things are winding down in the legislature and not many bills are moving. 

    In this issue:

    • ADF&G Budget Update
    • Pebble Mine EIS Comment Period Extended
    • Governor Dunleavy Responds to Inquiries Regarding Transboundary Issues
    • **Legislative Happenings from this Week**
    • **Legislative Meetings of Interest for Next Week**
    • How to Testify, Watch, or Listen to a Hearing
    • Bills Related for Fisheries, and other Bills of Interest to Fishermen

    ADF&G Budget Update
    The Department of Fish and Game Budget has not been finalized with the last action taking place in the Senate ADF&G Subcommittee on April 16.  A summary to the April 16 Senate ADF&G Subcommittee may be found in our April 22, 2019 Legislative Update.

    Pebble Mine EIS Comment Period Extended
    The Pebble Mine EIS Comment Period was extended to July 1, 2019.  Save Bristol Bay has an online template for commenting which may be accessed here.  Alternatively, you may send comments directly to the Army Corps of Engineers Pebble Project EIS website.

    Governor Dunleavy Responds to Inquiries Regarding Transboundary Issues
    On May 6, Governor Dunleavy sent a letter to Speaker Edgmon in response to the legislature’s letter urging continued engagement with the Province of British Columbia on the issue of transboundary rivers under the Memorandum of Understanding and Cooperation (MOU), signed by the previous administration.United Fishermen of Alaska also sent a letter to the Governor in early April inquiring about the status of the MOU.In the letter to the Legislature, Governor Dunleavy stated the MOU is “still in effect and the Governor’s Office continues to take the lead on behalf of the State of Alaska.”Governor Dunleavy continued, “This is important work, my administration recognizes the progress made, and will continue to seek ways to best protect Alaska’s natural resources and environment.”

    United Fishermen of Alaska views this as a good starting point and hopes that the Administration continues to push for financial assurances and adequate engagement in the permitting process.

    -Frances Leach, Executive Director


    Legislation – Happenings from this week on fishery related bills we are tracking. (May 6 – May 10, 2019)

    House Fisheries

    Tuesday, May 7, HB 99 – Nuyakuk River Falls: Hydroelectric Site. Heard & referred to House Resources. Watch Meeting

    House Resources

    House Floor

    • Monday, May 6, HB 41 – Shellfish Enhance. Projects; Hatcheries (Ortiz – UFA Supports) Passed the House, referred to Senate Finance with no scheduled hearings at this time.
    • Wednesday, May 8, SB 61  – Commercial Fishermen’s Fund: Vessel Owner Claims (Stevens – UFA Supports) Passed the Senate and the House and currently awaiting transmittal to Governor.

    Legislative Meetings of interest for this weekend and the week of May 13 – May 17, 2019.

    No meetings currently scheduled pertaining to bills we are tracking.

    Please feel free to track bills in The Bill Tracking Management Facility (BTMF).


    To testify, watch or listen in to a hearing …
    To testify it’s best to go to a Legislative Information office – see them online at http://akleg.gov/lios.php . If you can’t get to an LIO you can call in to listen in or testify through the following numbers – call & ask for the specific committee hearing:


    From Anchorage based phones call 907-563-9085;

    From Juneau based phones or outside Alaska call 907-586-9085;

    From other areas of Alaska, call toll-free 844-586-9085…and ask for the specific hearing.

    To watch hearings online go to legislative home page at http://w3.akleg.gov/  at the time of the hearing, and click on the “Live Now” tab, and then select the meeting.

    To watch floor sessions and other hearings see Gavel to Gavel archives.

    To find your legislators and contact info see http://w3.legis.state.ak.us/  – see “WHO REPRESENTS ME?” in the lower right corner of the page.

    **********************************************************************
    Bills related to fisheries that we are tracking, and others that may be of interest to fishermen.

    SB 22  – Shellfish Enhance. Projects; Hatcheries (Stevens- Senate Finance- UFA Supports) Referred to Senate Finance with no scheduled hearings at this time.
    SB 51  – Natl. Res. Water Nomination/Designation (Senate Resources) Currently in Senate Resources with no scheduled hearings at this time.
    SB 61  – Commercial Fishermen’s Fund: Vessel Owner Claims (Stevens – UFA Supports) Passed the Senate and the House and currently awaiting transmittal to Governor.
    SB 63  – Fish Tax: Repeal Muni Refunds/Rev. Share (Senate Rules by Request of the Governor- UFA Opposes) Currently in Senate Community and Regional Affairs with no scheduled hearings at this time.
    SB 90  – Cook Inlet: New Admin Area; Permit Buyback (Micciche) Currently in Senate Finance with no scheduled hearings at this time.
    SB 99 – Personal Use Fishing Priority (Kawasaki- UFA Opposes).  Referred to Senate Resources with no scheduled hearings at this time.
    HB 35 – Conflict of Interest: Board Fisheries/Game (Stutes – UFA Supports) Referred to Senate State Affairs with no scheduled hearings at this time.
    HB 41 – Shellfish Enhance. Projects; Hatcheries (Ortiz – UFA Supports) Passed the House, referred to Senate Finance with no scheduled hearings at this time.
    HB 65 – Fish Tax: Repeal Muni Refunds/Rev. Share (House Rules by Request of the Governor – UFA Opposes) Currently in House Fisheries with no scheduled hearings at this time.
    HB 105 – Commercial Fishermen’s Fund: Vessel Owner Claims.  (Ortiz- UFA Supports) Currently in House Finance with no scheduled hearings at this time.
    HB 116 – Aquatic Farm/Hatchery Site Leases. (Story). Currently in House Resources with hearing scheduled for May 10.
    HR 8 – 2019 International Year of the Salmon Resolution. Currently in House Rules.

    Please support our business members – see links on our website
    To join UFA see http://www.ufafish.org/become-a-member/

    This update is made possible by the support of our Group, Business, Individual and Crew members.
    To join UFA see http://www.ufafish.org/become-a-member/

    UFA Legislative Update: April 28, 2019

      Dear UFA Members and Friends,

      In this issue:

      • UFA is Hiring
      • **Legislative Happenings from this Week**
      • **Legislative Meetings of Interest for Next Week**
      • How to Testify, Watch, or Listen to a Hearing
      • Bills Related for Fisheries, and other Bills of Interest to Fishe

      UFA is Hiring
      United Fishermen of Alaska is seeking an Office Manager based in Juneau to work in a fast-paced environment.  The Office Manager is responsible for general office work including membership correspondence, bookkeeping, filing of paper and electronic records, meeting preparation, and staff support to the Executive Director. The position is based in Juneau, Alaska. For a more detailed job description, please go to UFA’s website: UFA Office Manager Description.

      -Frances Leach, Executive Director


      House Finance

      Legislation – Happenings from this week on fishery related bills we are tracking. (April 22 – April 26, 2019)

      • Monday, April 22- HB 41 – Shellfish Enhance. Projects; Hatcheries. Heard & held. Watch Meeting
      • Tuesday, April 24, SB 61  – Commercial Fishermen’s Fund: Vessel Owner Claims. Heard & held Watch Meeting
      • Wednesday, April 25- HB 41 – Shellfish Enhance. Projects; Hatcheries. Hearing held and bill moved out of committee and headed to House Floor. Watch Meeting
      • Friday, April 26, SB 61  – Commercial Fishermen’s Fund: Vessel Owner Claims. Heard & moved out of committee and referred to House Rules. Watch Meeting

      House Fisheries

      • Tuesday, April 23, HB 116 – Aquatic Farm/Hatchery Site Leases. Heard & held. Watch Meeting
      • Tuesday, April 23, HR 8 – 2019 International Year of the Salmon Resolution. Heard and referred to House Resource for April 26.  Watch Meeting
      • Thursday, April 25, HB 116 – Aquatic Farm/Hatchery Site Leases. Heard  and moved out of committee and referred to House Resources for May 3. Watch Meeting
      • Thursday, April 25, HB 65 – Fish Tax: Repeal Muni Refunds/Rev. Share. Heard & held. Watch Meeting

      House Resources

      • Wednesday, April 24, Presentation: Fisheries Taxes in Alaska by Dept. of Revenue by Brandon Spanos, Deputy Director, Tax Division, Dept. of Revenue Commissioner Bruce Tangeman, Dept. of Revenue Elizabeth Nudelman, Revenue Audit Supervisor, Fish Tax Group, Dept. of Revenue. Watch Meeting
      • Wednesday, April 24, HR 8 – 2019 International Year of the Salmon Resolution. Heard and Held. Watch Meeting
      • Friday, April 26, Presentation: Alaska Commercial Fishing Industry Update by Frances Leach, Exec. Dir., United Fishermen of Alaska Watch Meeting
      • Friday, April 26, Arctic Strategic Transportation and Resources by Faith Martineau, Director, Office of Project Management and Permitting, Dept. of Natural Resources Jeff Bruno, Large Project Coordinator, Office of Project Management and Permitting, Dept. of Natural Resources Watch Meeting
      • Friday, April 26, HR 8 – 2019 International Year of the Salmon Resolution. Watch Meeting

      Senate Resources

      • Monday, April 22, SB 90  – Cook Inlet: New Admin Area; Permit Buyback. Heard & Held. Watch Meeting

      Legislative Meetings of interest for this weekend and the week of April 29 – May 3, 2019.

      MONDAY, April 29

      Senate Resources– Butrovich 205 
      4:00 PM ~ **Teleconferenced**

      TUESDAY, April 30

      House Fisheries– Gruenberg 120 
      10:00 AM ~ **Teleconferenced**

      • An overview of British Columbia Mining in Shared Transboundary Watersheds Meeting Link
      • Bills previously heard/scheduled Meeting Link

      FRIDAY, May 3

      House Resources– Barnes 124 
      1:00 PM ~ **Teleconferenced**
      HB 116 – Aquatic Farm/Hatchery Site Leases **Public Testimony (Time Limit May be Set)** Meeting Link

      Please feel free to track bills in The Bill Tracking Management Facility (BTMF).



      To testify, watch or listen in to a hearing …
      To testify it’s best to go to a Legislative Information office – see them online at http://akleg.gov/lios.php . If you can’t get to an LIO you can call in to listen in or testify through the following numbers – call & ask for the specific committee hearing:

      • From Anchorage based phones call 907-563-9085;
      • From Juneau based phones or outside Alaska call 907-586-9085;
      • From other areas of Alaska, call toll-free 844-586-9085…and ask for the specific hearing.

      To watch hearings online go to legislative home page at http://w3.akleg.gov/  at the time of the hearing, and click on the “Live Now” tab, and then select the meeting.

      To watch floor sessions and other hearings see Gavel to Gavel archives.

      To find your legislators and contact info see http://w3.legis.state.ak.us/  – see “WHO REPRESENTS ME?” in the lower right corner of the page.


      Bills related to fisheries that we are tracking, and others that may be of interest to fishermen.

      SB 22  – Shellfish Enhance. Projects; Hatcheries (Stevens- Senate Finance- UFA Supports) Referred to Senate Finance with no scheduled hearings at this time.
      SB 51  – Natl. Res. Water Nomination/Designation (Senate Resources) Currently in Senate Resources with no scheduled hearings at this time.
      SB 61  – Commercial Fishermen’s Fund: Vessel Owner Claims (Stevens – UFA Supports) Currently in House Rules with no scheduled hearings at this time.
      SB 63  – Fish Tax: Repeal Muni Refunds/Rev. Share (Senate Rules by Request of the Governor- UFA Opposes) Currently in Senate Community and Regional Affairs with no scheduled hearings at this time.
      SB 90  – Cook Inlet: New Admin Area; Permit Buyback (Micciche) Currently in Senate Resources with scheduled hearing for Monday, April 29.
      SB 99 – Personal Use Fishing Priority (Kawasaki- UFA Opposes).  Referred to Senate Resources with no scheduled hearings at this time.
      HB 35 – Conflict of Interest: Board Fisheries/Game (Stutes – UFA Supports) Referred to Senate State Affairs with no scheduled hearings at this time.
      HB 41 – Shellfish Enhance. Projects; Hatcheries (Ortiz – UFA Supports) Moved out of House Finance – next stop, House Floor.
      HB 65 – Fish Tax: Repeal Muni Refunds/Rev. Share (House Rules by Request of the Governor – UFA Opposes) Currently in House Fisheries with no scheduled hearings at this time.
      HB 105 – Commercial Fishermen’s Fund: Vessel Owner Claims.  (Ortiz- UFA Supports) Currently in House Finance with no scheduled hearings at this time.
      HB 116 – Aquatic Farm/Hatchery Site Leases. (Story). Currently in House Resources with hearing scheduled for May 3.
      HR 8 – 2019 International Year of the Salmon Resolution. Currently in House Rules.

      Please support our business members – see links on our website
      To join UFA see http://www.ufafish.org/become-a-member/

      This update is made possible by the support of our Group, Business, Individual and Crew members.
      To join UFA see http://www.ufafish.org/become-a-member/

      Press Release: UFA Welcomes At-Large Board Members and Executive Committee

        For Immediate Release 

        Contact:  Frances Leach, Executive Director,  (907) 586-2820

        UFA Welcomes At-Large Board Members and Executive Committee

        United Fishermen of Alaska (UFA) is pleased to announce the re-election of Bruce Schactler and the election of Tyson Fick, Melanie Brown, and Cynthia Wallesz to the UFA board of directors as at-large members. UFA’s individual and lifetime members elect four at-large directors every two years to represent the more than 450 individual, lifetime, and crew members on the organization’s board. The at-large directors will serve two-year terms beginning April 15, 2019 on the UFA Board of Directors. Also taking effect on April 15 is the return of Duncan Fields to the UFA Executive Committee as Administrative Chair.

        UFA welcomes the return of Tyson Fick and Cynthia Wallesz to the board, now as elected at-large members. Fick represented the Alaska Bering Sea Crabbers group from 2017 to 2018 and Wallesz represented United Southeast Alaska Gillnetters on the UFA board from 2015 to 2018.

        Tyson Fick previously worked as communications director at the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute as well as executive director at ABSC. Based in Juneau, he now fishes Southeast salmon gillnet, salmon handtroll, and Dungeness crab, and is a co-owner of Taku River Reds.

        Cynthia Wallesz of Petersburg, Alaska and Boise Idaho has been a Southeast salmon drift gillnetter for 25 years and direct marketing her family’s salmon since 1999. She has also longlined for halibut, and fished Dungeness crab in Washington, and has been active in the Petersburg Community Foundation, Chamber of Commerce, and Southeast Alaska Rainforest Wild. Since earning a Master’s degree in Sustainable Business in 2012, she has consulted with small businesses and nonprofits to help them strategize their futures, work efficiently and meet their goals.

        Melanie Brown of Juneau has been fishing since 1979 in her family’s Bristol Bay setnet operation and as a crew member in Togiak herring, Kotzebue Sound and Norton Sound setnet fisheries. She is an alternate member of the Juneau Douglas Advisory Committee and in her second term on the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute Salmon Species Committee, and a board member of Alaska Marine Conservation Council.

        Bruce Schactler of Kodiak, has fished salmon seining in Southeast and Kodiak, Tanner crab in Kodiak and Togiak, longlining for cod and halibut, and herring throughout the state. He also is the Director of the Alaska Global Food Aid Program with the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute and National Director for the National Seafood Marketing Coalition. He co-authored the UFA Marketing Plan in 2001 which led to USDA Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) for seafood, USDA Trade Adjustment Assistance eligibility for fishermen, and inclusion of Alaska salmon and herring in food aid programs. Mr. Schactler has served as an at-large board member since 1993 and received the 2013 UFA Fisherman of the Year award, and will continue in his role on the executive committee as UFA Marketing chair.

        The UFA Executive committee was elected at the spring meeting in February with seats taking effect on April 15. Changes for 2019 include Jerry McCune as chairman of UFA’s Environmental Issues committee, and the return of Duncan Fields as chairman of the UFA Admin committee, which he previously held from 2011 to 2015. UFA’s officers Matt Alward (President), Bob Kehoe (Vice President), and Chad See (Secretary) were each re-elected to serve another one year term.

        United Fishermen of Alaska is the statewide commercial fishing trade association, representing 35 Alaska commercial fishing organizations participating in fisheries throughout the state and adjacent offshore federal waters. More information is online at www.ufafish.org .