I, Mike Dunleavy, Governor of the State of Alaska, under the authority of Article III, Sections 1 and 24 of the Alaska Constitution, and in accordance with AS 44.19 .145( c ), hereby order the establishment of the Alaska Bycatch Review Task Force (ABRT).
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE
Bycatch is defined as fish which are harvested in a fishery but are not sold or kept. Simply put, bycatch occurs when fishermen unintentionally catch fish, or other marine species, they do not want, cannot sell, or are not allowed to keep.
The ABRT is hereby established for the purpose of exploring the issue of bycatch and providing recommendations to policy makers with the goal of improving the health and sustainability of Alaska’s fisheries, and protecting Alaska’s record as a leader of fisheries’ conservation and sustainability.
More specifically, the ABRT shall:
- Study what impacts bycatch has on fisheries.
- Evaluate and recommend policies informed by a better understanding of the issue of bycatch of high-value Alaska fishery resources.
- Ensure state agencies are leveraging available resources to better understand the issue of bycatch.
- Utilize the best available science to inform policy makers and the public about these issues.
The Bycatch Review Task Force will consist of 13 voting members who are appointed by, and serve at the pleasure of the Governor, and two non-voting members requested by the Governor as detailed below. The Governor shall select a Chair and Vice Chair from the voting members.
Two voting members from the State of Alaska:
- The Commissioner of the Department of Fish and Game, or the Commissioner’s designee.
- The Commissioner of the Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development, or the Commissioner’s designee.
Eleven voting members, who are not state officials:
- One representative who serves on the North Pacific Fishery Management Council.
- One representative of an organization representing Community Development Quota
(CDQ) entities in the state.
- One representative who is an active trawl fisherman or representative of the trawl sector in the state.
- One representative who actively harvests salmon or who represents salmon fishermen in the state.
- One representative who actively harvests crab or who represents crab fishermen in the state.
- One representative who is an active halibut fisherman or who represents halibut fishermen in the state.
- One representative who is an active fishing charter operator or who represents charter operators in the state.
- One representative of the general public.
- One representative of an organization that represents Alaska Natives in the state.
- One representative of an organization that represents personal use and sport fishermen in the state.
- One mayor from a coastal Alaskan community.
Two ex-officio non-voting members:
The Governor requests two non-voting ex-officio members, one who is a member of the Alaska State Senate appointed by the Senate President, and one who is a member of the Alaska House of Representatives, appointed by the Speaker of the House. Failure of the Legislature to appoint these members shall not prevent the Task Force from completing its duties and responsibilities as outlined herein.
The Alaska Bycatch Review Task Force is assigned to the Department of Fish and Game for administrative purposes.
Consistent with law and available appropriations, each designated state agency shall use existing personnel and monetary resources to comply with this Order.
Task Force members receive no compensation or other remuneration from the State as members of the Task Force. However, members of the Task Force who are not state or federal employees are entitled to per diem and travel expenses in the same manner permitted for members of state boards and commissions under AS 39.20.180. Per diem and travel expenses for members of the Task Force who are a representative of a state or federal agency are the responsibility of that agency.
The Task Force may create advisory-only subcommittees.
The Task force will meet monthly, at a minimum. Additional meetings may be called by the Chair. The Task Force and its subcommittees will use teleconferencing and other electronic means, to the extent practicable, in order to gain maximum public participation at minimum cost.
At times and locations to be determined by the Chair, the Task Force may convene public meetings to present information and receive comments.
Meetings of the ABRT and any subcommittee shall be conducted in accordance with AS 44.62.310 – 44.62.319 (Open Meetings Act).
Records of the ABRT and any subcommittee are subject to inspection and copying as public records under AS 40.25.110 – 40.25.220.
EFFECTIVE DATE AND DURATION
This Order takes effect immediately.
The ABRT will sunset on November 30, 2022.
DATED this 18th day of November 2021.