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#RadioChatter #05-03-2012 Comfish News Roundup

View of Kodiak from Pillar Mountain
View of Kodiak from Pillar Mountain (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Volunteers Search for Evidence in ComSta Double Homicide
Jennifer Canfield/KMXT
Well over a hundred volunteers, mostly Coast Guard members and family, gathered early this morning at the Communications Station to help the FBI search for evidence related to.....

Local Organization Calls for Fewer J-1 Visa Workers in Kodiak
May 02, 2012
Jennifer Canfield/KMXT
The state department's rush to reform the J-1 visa program has slowed, says Senator Mark Begich. The program had been under intense scrutiny since last fall when hundreds of J-1 student workers at a Hershey's chocolate plant in Pennsylvania walked out in protest of working conditions. Begich worked quickly to convince his colleagues that the program is essential to operating Alaska's canneries. However, Kodiak's Filipino-American Association is still taking a stance against the program in its current form. Fil-Am President Mary Guilas-Hawver says too many locals are being displaced out of cannery jobs because of the J-1 visa workers.....

Stedman: Projects could help region’s economy
by Ed Schoenfeld, CoastAlaska News
May 2, 2012 5:11 pm
Sitka Senator Bert Stedman was a key player in this year’s oil-tax and gasline battles. And he managed the capital budget as co-chairman of the Senate Finance Committee. He also focused on projects and issues in his district, which includes Sitka, Ketchikan, Wrangell and Petersburg. One of Stedman’s main jobs in the Legislature is to assemble a list of public-works projects to go into the capital budget. He starts with governor’s spending plan and works with other lawmakers to fit their priorities into the document. That includes expanding programs already on the governor’s list. “One of the bigger issues will be the Roads to Resources Program that’s going on...

Greenpeace charged USD 4,400 for tracking boats fishing illegally
Thursday, May 03, 2012, 01:30 (GMT + 9)
Greenpeace was charged and acquitted in a Helsingør court last January for illegally placing tracking devices on fishing vessels. The Eastern High Court recently overturned Greenpeace's acquittal and fined the green group DKK 25,000 (USD 4,400) for trespassing. Sebastian Ostenfeldt Jensen, a Greenpeace activist, was fined DKK 2,250 (USD 400) for placing the tracking devices on boats in Gilleleje harbour in 2010. Greenpeace used the devices to prove that the vessels in question were fishing for cod in marine sanctuaries illegally.....

Humpbacks free themselves of fishing gear in Southeast Alaska
Mike Campbell | May 02, 2012
A pair of humpback whales entangled in fishing gear in Southeast Alaska managed to elude a team of scientists trying to free them -- and eventually freed themselves. On Tuesday, a seaplane pilot reported seeing a pair of humpbacks near Admiralty Island trailing an orange buoy. A team of specialists was dispatched from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) regional office and the Ted Stevens Marine Research Institute. They quickly found the...

Unalaska police blotter comically details wacky crimes of an Alaska fishing town
Jillian Rogers | The Dutch Harbor Fisherman | May 01, 2012
For any self-respecting news reporter, rewriting the cop blotter for print is a mundane task reserved for rookies or interns. Unalaska's police log, however, is the exception. And it's all because of Sgt. Jennifer Shockley and her whimsical methods of writing the weekly dealings that local police have with some of the citizens of the small fishing town. From week to week since about 2006, Shockley, 46, has been documenting minor, and often humorous, criminal activity around Dutch Harbor and sending those logs out into the world for publication through various media outlets.....

Watson tapped to head IFA
by Deanna Garrison
May 2, 2012 3:42 PM
The Inter-Island Ferry Authority has tapped Craig Mayor Dennis Watson to head up the IFA.
Watson has been working as the acting general manager since February. “Working there as the interim for the last three months … I’ve gotten a chance to really see what the job is all about. I enjoy the work and I think we’ve been pretty productive, so I certainly wanted to try to do it for a little while longer and it all worked out,” Watson says. Watson says he will continue to serve as Craig’s mayor.
“I’m able to work back and forth in between the two. Wherever I’m at I’ve got a computer so I’m able to do work for both. It’s working out so far,” he says. The IFA transports approximately 50,000 passengers annually between Hollis and Ketchikan. That’s a drop from around 55,000 to 56,000 passengers in...

Tsunami debris reaches Montague
Summer clean-up efforts to focus from Montague Island to Kenai Peninsula’s Gore Point
By Naomi Klouda
Homer Tribune
Chris Pallister’s worst nightmare came true over the weekend when he took a first look at the outer islands of Prince William Sound on a flight to check for snow thaw.
Beaches were exposed from ice, but a whole lot of other flotsam – large chunks of wall insulation, hundreds of gas canisters – were there as well. For 50 miles or more, massive amounts of debris litter the beaches. Black snarls of fishing nets and canisters that may still contain oil, fuel and kerosene. Carcasses of urethane foam torn out of buildings in the Japanese Earthquake and subsequent tsunami that struck last spring also washed ashore. On May 5, the Gulf of Alaska Keepers had planned to get started cleaning beaches. This is why Pallister was checking on the progress of break-up. He is the president of the Gulf of Alaska Keeper Organization, a group that monitors 17 beach cleanup sites and 122 miles of coastline. Over the past 10 years, GOAK gained an idea on what constitutes the normal haul of heaved up trash – they’ve collected 1 million pounds. “What we are seeing is magnitudes more. In my opinion, this is the single greatest environmental pollution event that has ever hit the west coast of North America,” Pallister said Tuesday morning. “The slow-motion aspects of....  /////

Ports Offer Vital Link for Wild Seafood Feeding Millions
By Margaret Bauman
From the shores of Oregon and Washington State to the small fishing communities dotting Alaska’s vast coastline, ports and harbors are a vital link in getting millions of pounds of fresh seafood to markets around the world. Every year crews aboard thousands of commercial fishing vessels of all sizes visit these ports, large and small, to offload or transfer their perishable cargo, arrange for maintenance and repair of their vessels and pick up supplies....

Southeast Alaska Salmon Seiners Say Yes to Buyout
A majority of the 379 permit holders in the Southeast Alaska salmon purse seine fishing fleet have approved a National Marine Fisheries Service plan to repay a fishing capacity reduction loan to purchase 64 permits identified in a fleet reduction plan.....

NPFMC Budgets Two Days for PSC Halibut in Gulf of Alaska
Two whole days of the North Pacific Fishery Management Council meeting in Kodiak in June will be spent on halibut issues, notably final action to slice the cap on halibut in the groundfish fisheries in the Gulf of Alaska....

Bristol Bay Sockeye Chilling More Than Doubles Over Five-Year Period
A processor survey of the 2011 Bristol Bay sockeye salmon fishery shows it was the coolest ever, with 53 percent of the sockeye salmon delivered to processors chilled. “If 53 percent still sounds low,” said Bob Waldrop, executive director of the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association, “consider this: When we started contracting annual processor surveys in 2008, that figure sat at 24 percent...

Grant Award Will Aid Jig Fishery for Kodiak Area
A $90,000 grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to the Alaska Marine Conservation Council will be used to help fishermen in the Kodiak area get greater opportunity and better prices in the jig fisheries that target Pacific cod and rockfish....

Fish and Game restricts Anchor River king fishing
Escapement goals not achieved since 2008
Staff report
The Alaska Department of Fish and Game, Division of Sport Fishing, announced Monday that sport fishing on the Anchor River will be open during five, three-day weekends (Saturday–Monday) for 2012: May 19–21, May 26–28, June 2–4, June 9–11 and June 16–18. The river will not open to sport fishing on Wednesdays, as stated in the 2012 Southcentral Alaska Sport Fishing Regulation Summary booklet......

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