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Title 5 . Fish and Game
Chapter 24 . Transportation, Possession and Release of Live Fish; Aquatic Farming
Section 370. Prince William Sound Management and Salmon Enhancement Allocation Plan

5 AAC 24.370. Prince William Sound Management and Salmon Enhancement Allocation Plan

(a) The purpose of the management and allocation plan contained in this section is to provide a fair and reasonable allocation of the harvest of enhanced salmon among the drift gillnet, seine, and set gillnet commercial fisheries, and to reduce conflicts between these user groups. It is the intent of the Board of Fisheries (board) to allocate enhanced salmon stocks in the Prince William Sound Area to maintain the long-term historic balance between competing commercial users that has existed since statehood, while acknowledging developments in the fisheries that have occurred since this plan went into effect in 1991.

(b) For the purposes of determination of allocation percentages for the drift gillnet and purse seine fisheries, calculations shall be based on the ex-vessel value of the harvest of enhanced salmon stocks by the drift gillnet and purse seine fisheries without considering the set gillnet catch. The ex-vessel value allocation of enhanced salmon stocks for the set gillnet gear group is four percent of the total allocation. The remaining ex-vessel value allocation of the enhanced stocks is as follows:

(1) drift gillnet - 50 percent;

(2) purse seine - 50 percent.

(c) Each year the department shall determine the ex-vessel value of the enhanced salmon taken in the drift gillnet, purse seine, and set gillnet fisheries in the Prince William Sound Area during the previous year and compare the enhanced salmon stock harvest ex-vessel value of the drift gillnet and purse seine fisheries. The ex-vessel value will be calculated from the information given on the commercial operator annual report for all participating processors.

(d) The department will not make inseason adjustments or changes in management to achieve the allocation percentages established in (b) of this section.

(e) The department shall manage the Prince William Sound commercial salmon fisheries as follows:

(1) the Eastern, Northern (except Perry Island Subdistrict), Southeastern, Northwestern, and Montague Districts purse seine fishery shall be managed with fishing seasons opened and closed by emergency order based on the strength of wild and enhanced salmon stocks;

(2) Southwestern District:

(A) the district is closed to salmon fishing before July 18;

(B) on or after July 18, based on the strength of pink salmon stocks, purse seine fishing periods may be opened by emergency order;

(3) Perry Island Subdistrict:

(A) the district is closed to salmon fishing before July 21;

(B) on or after July 21, based on the strength of pink salmon stocks, purse seine fishing periods may be opened by emergency order;

(4) the Eshamy District gillnet fisheries shall be managed with fishing periods opened and closed by emergency order based on the surplus of wild and enhanced salmon stocks returning to the district;

(5) Coghill District:

(A) except as otherwise provided in this section, drift gillnet gear may be operated throughout the district during periods established by emergency order;

(B) beginning July 21, when the harvestable surplus is predominately pink salmon, purse seine gear may be operated in the district during periods established by emergency order;

(C) during a year when the purse seine fleet is allowed to harvest enhanced pink salmon in the Esther Subdistrict before July 21 under (h)(2) of this section, from June 1 through July 20,

(i) the Granite Bay Subdistrict will be closed;

(ii) if the commissioner determines that an emergency opening is necessary in the Granite Bay Subdistrict to prevent fish quality deterioration of enhanced salmon stocks returning to the Wally Noerenberg Hatchery, purse seine and drift gillnet gear groups will be allowed to harvest the surplus salmon in an area within the Granite Bay Subdistrict as specified by emergency order.

(f) If the set gillnet gear group catches five percent or more of the previous five-year average ex-vessel value of the total common property fishery for enhanced salmon as calculated by the department under (c) of this section, the year following this calculation beginning on July 10, the commissioner shall, by emergency order, open set gillnet fishing periods totaling no more than 36 hours per week.

(g) If the drift gillnet or purse seine gear group harvest value comparison of enhanced salmon is 47 percent or less of the previous five-year average ex-vessel value comparison of the common property enhanced salmon stocks harvested, as calculated by the department under (c) of this section, then in the year following this calculation the department will consult with the hatchery operator to address making proportional adjustments in cost recovery during the applicable year to correct the ex-vessel value allocation percentages to the drift gillnet and purse seine gear groups.

(h) If the drift gillnet or purse seine gear group harvest value of enhanced salmon is 45 percent or less of the previous five-year average ex-vessel value comparison of the common property enhanced salmon stocks harvested, as calculated by the department under (c) of this section, then in the year following this calculation the fishery shall be managed as follows:

(1) if the drift gillnet gear group harvest value is 45 percent or less, then in the year following the current calculations, the drift gillnet gear group shall have exclusive access to the Port Chalmers Subdistrict to harvest enhanced salmon returns from June 1 though July 30, during fishing periods established by emergency order; and

(2) if the purse seine gear group harvest value is 45 percent or less, then in the year following the current calculations, the purse seine gear group shall have exclusive access to the Esther Subdistrict to harvest enhanced salmon returns from June 1 through July 20, during fishing periods established by emergency order.

(i) It is the intent of the board that the provisions of this section do not restrict the commissioner's authority to take emergency order action if necessary for the management of wild stocks even if it affects the allocation percentages established in this section.

(j) In this section, "enhanced salmon stocks" means salmon produced by the Prince William Sound Aquaculture Corporation.

History: Eff. 4/30/91, Register 118; am 5/24/97, Register 142; am 5/11/2003, Register 166; am 5/20/2004, Register 170; am 3/30/2006, Register 177

Authority: AS 16.05.060

AS 16.05.251


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Last modified 7/05/2006