Alaska Trollers Association

Discussion area for political and legal issues affecting Alaskan salmon fisheries.

Alaska Trollers Association

Postby ata » Wed Feb 06, 2008 9:40 am

Greetings All!

Jon has graciously offered me a chance to discuss ATA issues on this board. If you have read some of my other posts (see: Treaty, USCG, 'Great Site!', etc) you will see that communication with the fleet is an ongoing issue in itself. Hopefully this will help remedy the situation a bit, while not dominating the great dialogue you have going on basic troll matters.

I'll check this site from time to time and welcome your questions. Please keep in mind that I will be cautious about sensitive information and may encourage a call if it's something better left un-posted to the world wide web. And, at times my schedule isn't conducive to a daily check - so I beg your patience. As always, drop me an email or give a call to the office those times that you need quicker attention. I'm a one-person show these days and often not at my desk, so leaving 'best time and number' to call during the work week helps us make contact. For your convenience, there is an answering service when I'm out of town or in meetings. I check email most every day.

As I'm sure you've noticed, you have a lot of issues impacting your operations. Please consider joining ATA and enlisting your fishing buddies, deckhands, and the businesses you work with. Just like your fishing operation, the association's costs continue to climb, which is a challenge when trying to cover all the bases and provide adequate staffing. Together you can build a bigger and stronger organization to work the issues and better inform the fleet - it's up to YOU!

Best of Success in 2008!

Dale Kelley, Executive Director
Alaska Trollers Association
Juneau
(907) 586-9400 ata@gci.net
ata
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Re: Alaska Trollers Association

Postby ata » Wed Feb 06, 2008 9:56 am

Hi Jon and All...

ATA website is still in development, but the good news is that it's in development. We have a contractor working on one and between her schedule and mine, it's tough to make contact. And, that picture thing I wrote about in another post is very limiting, because we obviously need good and representive fleet photos for a nice site.

Information exchange is an ongoing frustration for us all. I truly understand the importance of communicating with our membership, but most fishermen don't join their organizations, so too few people (like, 1) work for you and have to choose between working the issues and writing the fleet. Communication in the new milleneum is a real challenge for me as well. Newsletters serve a purpose, but the news in them is often dated, so it's a challenge to think of something fresh and then get it put together and out on the dock. Webpages are great, but many fishermen still don't use the internet and it's one more task on my list that needs completing...isn't it frustrating to go to a page that hasn't been updated in ages?! And, what goes in print is often quite different than what I share with members in person - written things have a way of getting to folks you'd rather not engage in the discussion, and the wide and open nature of the internet complicates that situation.

I don't mean to make excuses about communications, but welcome the chance to share with a few of you on this board precisely what the situation is. Contributions to the newsletter and suggestions about what you'd like to see in there and on a website would be greatfully accepted. If anyone would like to submit something for the newsletter, keep in mind that it's space limited and I may need to work with you on edits.

Again, Jon, thanks for the opportunity to expand fleet dialogue. I don't want to overwhelm your site with the 'ATA thing', but do hope that folks will consider supporting the organization - there is strength in numbers and costs for associations for core services is going through the roof. ATA has a great board of directors and treaty reps who could use your help! (Note: Nominations are open for several seats, so check the December newsletter - members should receive nomination forms in early March.)

Incidentally, let me know if I miss some posts, so folks wanting info don't feel neglected. I am just back from fish farm issue work on the East Coast - here one week - and next week it's off to Treatyland for a week...back just in time for the UFA meeting and getting final prep in order for the ATA board meeting, legislative tour, and raffle event the first week in March. Perhaps that gives a hint of what life is like at ATA?=)

ATA Board Meeting: March 5-9 Prospector Hotel, Juneau Members and invited guests welcome
ATA Raffle: March 8 Prospector Hotel, Juneau Tickets still available...find a board member or call the office 586-9400

Peace.

dk
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Re: Alaska Trollers Association

Postby ata » Sun Feb 17, 2008 12:54 pm

MARCH REMINDERS....

BOARD OF FISH: If folks have time between boatwork to worry about issues, please put some energy into Board of Fish ideas. I'm prepping ATA board packets and would like to add anything the fleet would like them to consider. You can email or snail mail your ideas, but I need to have them in hand no later than March 1.

ATA BOARD of DIRECTORS
1. The ATA Board meets in Juneau March 5-9 at the Prospector Hotel. Meetings are open to members and invited guests only.

2. Nominations are now open for several board seats - deadline APRIL 1. If you have not yet received a nominations form and want one (members only), please give the office a call - 907-586-9400. Be sure to leave your name and address if you get the answering service and I'll get it out to you.

ATA RAFFLE

The ATA Raffle Event is March 8 at the Prospector Hotel in Juneau - it's open to any and all, as long as you have a ticket or pay the cover charge ($20). Tickets are $20 (only 1000 PRINTED) and you can get them through me if local board members are out of them. We take MC/V. First prize: $2500 Second prize: $1000 Third prize: $500... plus a lot of other fun stuff!

Cheers!

Dale, ATA 907-586-9400
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Re: Alaska Trollers Association

Postby Salty » Sun Feb 17, 2008 5:47 pm

Dale,
On the Board of Fish. I see John Jensen has put in for reappointment. I am fine with John and plan to support him. Please let me know if ATA has a different idea. I talked at length with Kathy Hansen and she will not do it. Any other ideas for Edfelt's seat?
On the proposals:
1. If the Board of Fish subcommittee is not taking action I plan to re-submit or hope ATA will resubmit the proposal that the possession limit is your limit until you get home even if you freeze your fish.
2. I am going to re-submit the proposal to add the Alaska Hatchery Chinook we catch in the winter to the winter guideline harvest level. I would love ATA to sponsor this proposal. I know the summer quota is going down. All the more reason to maximize our value on every Chinook.
3. I am not sponsoring any barbless hook type proposals.
4. I am thinking of sponsoring a proposal to prohibit trolling outside the surfline after 6:00 pm in the evening during the Chinook non-retention period in order to minimize the by-catch of Chinook. But then maybe my vision is clouded on this by my age and poor health.
5. I would like the fleet to re think our spring openings in terms of market access in addition to Hatchery access. For example: Why should some areas without hatcheries, like Yakutat and Craig, not have some opportunity in May and June? It looks like we will have more hatchery Chinook here this spring so we should have adequate time. But, it would be a tragedy to lose these markets if our hatcheries are expecting weak returns. Anyway, I suspect the ATA Board and fleet is at least a Board of Fisheries Board cycle away from supporting this kind of proposal, but it is not too early to start the discussion.
6. I would like ATA to work with SEAS on developing a plan and proposals to bring the troll and seine fleet within their allocated share of the value of Alaska hatchery harvested salmon. The gillnetters are way above their allocated share anyway you look at the numbers. Trollers have been well below their share for years. Seiners have now fallen below the rolling average. As you know the gillnetters have absolutely refused to share Di-Pac chums with trollers. With our Chinook quota going down thus shortening the season, and the value of chums going up, it is likely a good portion of the fleet would appreciate an opportunity to target Di-Pac chum in early July.
7. I am thinking trollers should initiate a series of meeting with enforcement and the charter fleet in every community to educate each other about the drags, maneuverability, liability, rules of the road, drag etiquette, etc. We had a recent court case between a troller and charter fisher go in favor of the troller after he ran over an anchored charter boat. It is illegal for them to obstruct our drags and interfere in our commercial fishing operations. I am thinking some work to let them know where our Chinook drags in particular are and why they should not be anchoring or otherwise disrupting our operations in these areas during the few days in July and August when we are working them. I am thinking it would prevent problems and add to the strength of our case if we do have a problem.
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Re: Alaska Trollers Association

Postby ata » Sun Feb 17, 2008 6:53 pm

Yo Salty... a.k.a. Eric?=)

Hey, would you paste your BOF suggestions - and any additional thoughts - into an email to me? I'll print and add to the board packets. Perhaps the other sport/enforcement matters could be included in another mailing, so it gets the attention it deserves in another section of our board books?

It's probably a little late in the game to work with other groups on 'team' proposals, especially given the early April timing of proposal submission colliding with some pretty big issue meetings, but certainly if the ATA Board agrees with your suggestions we can make outreach and work with other groups and individuals in advance of the actual Board meeting.

Thanks for the thoughts... keep 'em comin' y'all!

Dale, ata@gci.net
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Re: Alaska Trollers Association

Postby ata » Sun Feb 17, 2008 7:01 pm

Dear All...

If there are posts on the board - by you or anyone else - where you think ATA might be able to fill the gaps by providing info, would you please send me a private email with some details so I can find and respond? Life gets pretty hectic at ATA and I am not likely to be on this site every day or be able to read every single post. I don't want anyone thinking they're being ignored...then again, suppose that depends on whatcha write. Play nice!=)

Slante!

Dale, ATA
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Re: Alaska Trollers Association

Postby Carol W » Mon Feb 18, 2008 6:57 am

Eric I urge you to rethink the surfline proposal, with the charter fleet working morning hours, this proposal would mean that a majority of the time we are working is when we would be sharing the drag with the charters. With the increase in operating expenses, shrinking the number of hours we work is not the avenue we want to go. I can remember several days in Shelikof this summer when after the morning bite I didn't catch shit until the the last hour of daylight. If a troller wants to quit early in the day that is his or hers perogative lets not mandate it. The other thing to keep in mind is weather if it blows all day long and lets up during the afternoon tide we would lose the oppurtunity to fish at all during a day ending at 6pm.
Under enhancement allocation concerns why not a proposal to allow trollers 6 lines inside of chum trolling area's. I would urge extreme caution in talking with the seine group for one of the surprises that have come along with SSRAA otilith marking chum is that the seine interception is much higher than what was demonstrated by fin clips. So if NSRAA thermo marked chum I think you would find the seine group is catching far more chum than what is demonstrated by fin clips.
Under spring management I agree I have climbed inside numbers of coho returning to SSRAA and have come upwith a 2 week period in late Aug to early Sept the coho migrate down the outside of Baranoff. In looking at chinook tag returns it is clearly obvious that this same window must exist in late May, how we identify this window is clearly a problem. At bare minimum we should consider a proposal that would put a handful of boats out on the coast to try and determine when this week might exist. I know people will say there are to many variables however after looking at the coho tag returns over a lot of years there is a pattern. Looking at the data we have in Chinook tags there is a simalar pattern.
Continueing under sprring management I think that it would be a much bigger help for the trollers to determine migration patterns of hatchery Chinook would be if the dept. would communicate the recovery of tags to the aquaculture associations in terms of districts rather than quadrants. When one tries to determine a pattern with the current reporting method you imediately come up with the several districts in a quadrant thus skewing a pattern. I think this issue maybe bigger than we all realize for if we are to maximize our hatchery chinook interception we need to develop and accurate picture as to where they are and when.
Another issue under spring management is Western Behm Canal, I have tried thru spring meetings to allow us to fish the western shore of Behm Canal however the dept keeps throwing interception of rivers behind the Island at us so we don't get that shore. It appears to me that the fish tend to bounce off the Betton Is shore and then track up the west side to enter the bay, and then when they back out of Neets Bay they are on the eastern shoreline and in a condition they don't want to bite. In 07 SSRAA harvested more chinook in Neets than the troll fleet intercepted and this isn't the first time, we as a fleet need to figure out how to harvest more of this return.
And yes it is very much time to get credit for Ak hatchery chinook harvested in the winter, having seen the numbers of SSRAA chinook harvested in the winter it is often a substancial component of the fishery in 113 March thru April and a fairly important component on inside waters in the fall months.
I would also like to throw out the idea of changing the opening of the winter season back to Oct 1, in the southend it is when fish are available and yes it may speed the winter fishery up some but it would also help maximize the value of the chinook fishery. And if we are really concerned about shortening the winter fishery to much we could put harvest caps on for fall, winter, and late winter.
Anyway here are some thoughts.
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Re: Alaska Trollers Association

Postby Salty » Mon Feb 18, 2008 11:21 am

Tom,
Great response. I look forward to hearing from others. You know me better than to think I would close that little evening honey hole you found out about recently. It happens to be inside the surfline. And it is very rare that there are kings in there in August. (Tips on how to get those little coho to bite during the day deleted.)
One year, the first year the boys were gone and it was just Sarah and I, we lived in there. Went weeks without going out to the 20 fathom edge. But, I was younger then and often was the first boat out and last boat in. Not a common occurance anymore. So, I have had to figure out how to get them to bite in the middle of the day.
I went out for one short trip last summer and had a lot of fun but it was expensive and a bit boring as in been here, done this. Also I didn't appreciate the charter boats clogging the drag when they could move over inside the mile line and do just as well. One of them took umbrage and ran over one of my float bags at 25 knots. We turned him into enforcement.
Also, Dave on the Ann has figured the drag out around those two humps and possibly even refined it. Makes it a challenge when we are working that traditional little 12 fathom drag with 15 or 17 out and others are trying to make a nice orderly circle around the bay.
But, don't think those fish are there every year. It looks to me like about one in four for the little coho's to set in there enough to work on. A lot of years in August there will be acres of feed and no salmon in there. Really weird.
Salty
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Re: Alaska Trollers Association

Postby John Murray » Wed Feb 27, 2008 8:26 am

Tom and Eric ,it will be a hard sell to get ATA board to support adding the winter AK. hatchery component onto the 45k guideline winter harvest.
Is it possible?Not with out some support from SPC board and a few of your local board members (ATA).Since Eric looks like he will summit the proposal
we'll have some time to gather support on this one.We are talking about 2.5k to 4k add on to winter catch.That's meaningful at the prices we are seeing.
There is some downside because of allocation from summer catch,heartburn/history issues.....I'm up for another run at this as are most of the winter fleet guys.
As a friend at ANB harbor says gota keep stirring the pot.
John Murray
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Re: Alaska Trollers Association

Postby Salty » Wed Feb 27, 2008 10:59 am

I am thinking that there might be some ability to forge common ground. Lots of southern end guys would love to have a shot in Frederick Sound and Clarence Straits again the first week of October. Perhaps just opening those areas the First of October plus adding the hatchery component would work and still not lose opportunity in April when the fish are arriving all over the region. Also the price should be a factor. Will it be good enough the first of October to justify opening? It looks to me like the quota will be shrinking and it will be more important than ever to optimize the value of each Chinook.
i was just talking to a long time troller about the history of trolling and he pointed out to me that the SE troll fishery started as a winter fishery. Does anyone have any information on that?
The fresh barbequed white Chinook the last couple of nights has been marvelous. Nothing like having good friends who can catch even when there are not any around.
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speaking of "gota keep stirring the pot"

Postby Ocean Gold » Mon Mar 10, 2008 7:28 am

We need people in Anchorage at the counsil meeting on the 4-6 of april !! The board is tired of hearing the same folks with the same songs. If there is anyway you or anyone you can think of can make it, contact one of us, ATA, Halibut Collition, SEAFA, ALFA. If you can't afford to go, let us help we have some miles or money for travel and rooms, if needed. This meeting is very important to allocation of fish between the charter fleet and us, the commercial fisherman. The impacts on small communitys is no longer small, for every pound the charter fleet catches it is a pound we get taken away. The excuse of having to go fishing because the price is so high is only going to last for a few more years at the rate they are taking our fishing rights away, 25+% a year. This is not just halibut anymore, controls must be put on the charter fleet this is just the start, BoF is going to be a battle.
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Re: Alaska Trollers Association

Postby Carol W » Mon Mar 10, 2008 7:34 am

Ed I am sure if any coop members need help with travel the coop will help also. Members need to contact Bellingham for help with travel costs.
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Re: Alaska Trollers Association

Postby Ocean Gold » Sat Mar 29, 2008 11:10 am

More napalm for the fire, sport ADFG logbook data out. be sure to read in the AM you won't be able to sleep till you calm down. http://www.fakr.noaa.gov/npfmc/current_ ... val308.pdf the growth is what we thought the numbers were much higher than they though on all speices in both areas. :evil: :o
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Re: Alaska Trollers Association

Postby Salty » Sat Mar 29, 2008 12:08 pm

From the report cited by Ed. In blue below. There is clearly an accounting problem here. The main thing is for the managers to not reward the sector for their mis reporting but to encourage compliance in the future by penalizing the whole group.
Sport fish Division has made a big deal about the accuracy of their survey data in the past. If they were right and their survey data is accurate then the logbook data is inaccurate. Something stinks here. For those of us observing what is going on on the grounds it is amazing the total number of kings harvested isn't 3 or 4 times their allocation.

About one-sixth of angler responses exceeded the two-fish bag limit. Party fishing is
reportedly still common statewide, so some discrepancies may have been due to charter operators
6
reporting two halibut kept per angler when the harvest was unevenly distributed among the clients. The
fact that there are differences in angler-specific reported harvest is not necessarily an indictment of the
logbook data – there may be angler-specific discrepancies even though the total harvest for the vessel-trip
was reported accurately.
Comparisons to Statewide Harvest Survey Estimates
Logbook harvest data were summarized by IPHC area and by SWHS reporting area and compared to
harvest estimates from the SWHS. The Area 2C logbook reported harvests of Chinook salmon, coho
salmon, halibut, and rockfish were all substantially higher than the final charter estimates from the SWHS
(Figure 4). Logbooks were 39% higher for Chinook salmon, 40% higher for coho salmon, 23% higher for
halibut, and 41% higher for rockfish in Area 2C, in numbers of fish (Table 6). The reported logbook
harvest of lingcod was 5% below the SWHS, and within the confidence interval.[/i][/i]
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Re: Alaska Trollers Association

Postby Ocean Gold » Sat Mar 29, 2008 12:46 pm

That is what im talkin about. A good one is on page 4 about the lingcod 294 caught illegal so we just removed them
or the 13000 Prince of Wales halibut average 9 lbs. or staff rounded down numbers of fish that exceeded the bag limit, what's with that? A lodge/charter that left at 11.59pm and returns the following day at 12 pm can and do claim two bag limits hence limit of 2 with 4 in possession is flawed. I want to see that changed to 1 daily bag limit in possession. One lodge worker we were talking to stated that it is ok to do that because they leave the day before and catch the fish on the returning day. I still can't figure out that way of thinking but...........
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Re: Alaska Trollers Association

Postby Salty » Sun Mar 30, 2008 10:00 am

The guided sector is just totally out of bounds here in SE Alaska. Did you see the article on prohibiting guides and crew from taking their limit while guided clients were on the trip from May 24th to sometime in August? What an unethical deal. They openly admit to just padding the clients bag limits with those fish. And just a few years ago we couldn't even use our trollers to go catch a salmon to eat.
To me our awareness of global climate change alters the whole picture. Guided sport fishing for halibut off of Sitka is a carbon guzzling, resource damaging, other fishery compromising enterprise which is furiously opposing conservation restrictions embraced by the commercial sector. This guided sport fish industry in Sitka is due for several corrections.

1. The rate of growth is and will continue to slow or stop.
2. The level of harvest of King Salmon and Halibut is certain to decline due to biological reductions.
3. The ethics of participating in this carbon guzzling enterprise in the face of global warming has to reduce clientèle.
4. The impacts on the resource and other fisheries will become better understood and lead to more regulation.
5. The costs of participating in this fishery with increased fuel prices, smaller bag limits, redefined possession limits, etc. will reduce clientèle.

The previous five points I believe are irrefutable. There are other factors that you could speculate will reduce the attractiveness of Sitka as a guided sport fishery designation such as increasing conflicts on the grounds, an increasing hostility in Sitka toward both the guides and their clients, tougher weather due to global climate change, more difficulty catching halibut and Chinook salmon due to declining abundance, etc.
What it means is that at least in Sitka there will certainly be a continued decline in the growth of the guided sport fishery and associated infrastructure. There is likely to be a decline in both the harvest and the clientèle. This means a lot of pain for the guided industry in Sitka. It is inevitable that there will be conflict as the guided sector continues to resist both conservation and living within historical allocations. It is inevitable that there will be suffering within the guided sector as the management bodies eventually regulate them to conservation mandated quotas and reasonable allocations. The task for us as commercial, sport, and subsistence fishermen is to minimize the collateral damage to the resources and our historical allocations as the guided sector is reined in. The job for community leaders is to recognize what is happening, the inevitability of a lot of it, and to minimize the collateral damage to their communities and the region.
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ATA Board of Directors

Postby ata » Sat Apr 05, 2008 9:12 am

ATA Board of Directors and their seat assignments/offices as of April 2008. Note that nominations for this year's election just closed, and ballots will go out this month. New board members will be seated at the fall board meeting.

Ketchikan
President Dave Otte, FV Sarah E

Lower 48
Vice President Bob (Fuzzy) Fredrickson, FV New Day

Lower 48
Secretary Joel Kawahara, FV Karolee

Sitka
Treasurer Jeff Longridge, FV Saami

At Large
Jim Dybdahl, FV Coronation

At Large
Tony Guggenbickler, Toni Marie

Sitka
John Murray, FV Loran

Juneau
Ken McGee, FV Northstar

Petersburg
Mark Roberts, FV Cape Cross

Wrangell
Dan Doak, FV Kodiak

Northern Rural
Carter Hughes, FV Radio

Southern Rural
Keith Brady, FV Ilona B

Handtroll
Ken Ash, FV Jennison

*************************
Staff
Dale Kelley, Executive Director (907) 586-9400
ata
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Re: Alaska Trollers Association

Postby ata » Wed Dec 31, 2008 12:25 pm

Happy New Year!

Just a friendly reminder to check your dues status with ATA. Past due? Never been a member? We'd dig seein' your name on the roster!

Board of Fisheries, Treaty, and Fish Farming take a heavy toll on the ATA budget. Dues and contributions very much appreciated.

Also important is keeping the legal fund tuned up - seems there's always something needed there.

Finally, the ATA Raffle Event will be held during the Board of Fisheries in Sitka - FEB. 20th - Westmark Hotel. Got tickets?

ATA accepts all forms of cash, VISA and MasterCard.

Best of all good things in 2009...

Dale and the ATA Board
ATA
130 Seward #205
Juneau, AK 99801
(907) 586-9400
ata
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Re: Alaska Trollers Association

Postby yak2you2 » Wed Dec 31, 2008 1:42 pm

Tell me more about the raffle. Do you have a list of prizes? how much are tickets? do we get them from you?
Thanks
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Re: Alaska Trollers Association

Postby ata » Wed Dec 31, 2008 6:02 pm

Thanks for asking!

The ATA raffle tickets are $20 each. We only print 1000. Top three prizes: $2500, $1000, and $500. There are usually 50-60 additional prizes of cash and merchandise, plus we give away door prizes at the event, which will be in Sitka Feb. 20th during the Board of Fish. You need not be present to win!

You can buy tickets from the ATA office (586-9400) or most of our board members (see list below). Last I looked, tickets were moving fast.

NOTE: You will need to either have a ticket or pay a cover to get into the raffle event - both just happen to be 20 bux.=) If you've misplaced your stub, talk to us at the door and we'll look it up.

ATA Board of Directors

Ketchikan
President Dave Otte, FV Sarah E

Lower 48
Vice President Bob (Fuzzy) Fredrickson, FV New Day

Lower 48
Secretary Joel Kawahara, FV Karolee

Sitka
Treasurer Jeff Longridge, FV Saami

At Large
Matt Donohoe, FV Helen A

At Large
Tony Guggenbickler, Toni Marie

Sitka
John Murray, FV Loran

Juneau
Ken McGee, FV Northstar

Petersburg
Mark Roberts, FV Cape Cross

Wrangell
Dan Doak, FV Kodiak

Northern Rural
Carter Hughes, FV Radio

Southern Rural
Keith Brady, FV Ilona B

Handtroll
Ken Ash, FV Jennison

*************************
Staff
Dale Kelley, Executive Director (907) 586-9400
ata
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