Alaska Statutes.
Title 16. Fish and Game
Chapter 10. Fisheries and Fishing Regulations
Section 750. Findings and Purpose.
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AS 16.10.750. Findings and Purpose.

(a) The legislature finds that

(1) the salmon fishing industry is among the state's largest industries and generates hundreds of millions of dollars and thousands of jobs each year; the salmon fishery is vitally important to commercial, subsistence, personal use, and sport fishing interests, and to the state's developing tourist industry;

(2) the state is committed to maintaining and enhancing its wild stocks of salmon by careful management, by initiating a 20-year rebuilding program, and by investing in the fishing industry;

(3) millions of Alaska salmon are being caught and injured by high seas fisheries that intercept salmon contrary to state, federal, or international law; the high seas interception of Alaska salmon defeats the state's management and rebuilding programs, deprives the state of a return on its investment in the fishing industry, and detrimentally affects subsistence and sport fishing uses of Alaska salmon;

(4) vessels that engage in the high seas interception of salmon can move relatively freely and undetected from region to region in the North Pacific and thus are able to harvest whatever species is most readily available or most valuable; by moving farther westward, a greater proportion of the take is Asian salmon; moving eastward results in a greater proportion of the take being Alaska salmon; although there is intermixing of Asian and North American salmon stocks, scientific evidence proves that even a minimal harvest of salmon within the migratory range of each species will contain Alaska salmon;

(5) the illegal taking of salmon detrimentally affects the Alaska fishing industry; the illegal taking of Alaska salmon is of primary concern because of the direct and immediate effect on the state; in addition, the illegal taking of Asian salmon is also of concern because depletion of those stocks will ultimately result in a shifting of high seas fishing efforts, both legal and illegal, to Alaska salmon;

(6) high seas interception of salmon occurs beyond the exclusive economic zone of the United States, or through incursion within the exclusive economic zone and the state's territorial sea, by vessels that are usually not registered in this state; moreover, these vessels are not based in Alaska and can thus avoid detection more easily than Alaska-based vessels; as a practical matter, it is extremely difficult to directly or indirectly regulate the vessels themselves; it is therefore necessary to prohibit activities within the state that give aid, comfort, and financial incentives to high seas interception of salmon.

(b) The purpose of AS 16.10.750 - 16.10.800 is to prevent resources, facilities, and expertise within the state from being available to promote or facilitate the high seas interception of salmon or the making of intercepted salmon ready for or accessible to world markets.

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