• Forecast
  • News Tip
  • Categories
News Alert: DIRECTV Customers: Tell DIRECTV to bring back KTVA - Call 800-531-5000. - Read More
Temperature Precipitation
Estimated read time
1m 36s

Setnet ban: Judge lets ballot initiative process move forward

By Rhonda McBride 11:18 PM July 23, 2014
ANCHORAGE –

It looks like the Cook Inlet fish wars will soon ramp up to a new level. Voters may have a chance to decide whether to ban setnets in urban areas.

The Alaska Fisheries Conservation Alliance (AFCA), which represents sport fishermen, has scored a major court victory.

Alaska Superior Court Judge Catherine Easter ruled favorably on the alliance’s petition to ban setnetting on Wednesday.

Although the petition doesn’t specifically name Cook Inlet setnetters, the language of the petition appears to target them.

The setnetters fish for sockeyes, but catch kings incidentally. AFCA wants to stop them from fishing completely. While this might help protect the endangered king salmon, it would also make more Cook Inlet salmon available for sport fishermen and dipnetters.

The judge said Lt. Governor Mead Treadwell was wrong to block the petition.

Treadwell based his decision on an opinion from the Alaska Department of Law, which said the petition violates provisions in the Alaska constitution — which treats fish and game resources as a state asset.

Treadwell said the proposed initiative, if passed, would have the effect of allocating fish between user groups. The Department’s opinion also said the passage of the initiative could set a bad precedent — that the state might face future petition drives seeking to outlaw other gear types.

Opponents of the petition have decried it as “ballot box biology,” and said fishery allocation decisions should be made by the Alaska Board of Fisheries.

“Alaskans have a long history of using ballot initiatives to protect fish and game,” said the AFCA’s attorney Matt Singer in a prepared statement.

The next step for the alliance is to collect 35,000 signatures — the required number to put the measure on the ballot.

The AFCA aims to put the initiative before voters in 2016.

Click here to see the judge’s order.

Latest Stories

  • News

    Inside the Gates: Military family posts daily vlogs

    by Bonney Bowman on Feb 24, 23:36

    One Alaska family is making reality TV a real life part of their daily routine. The Cassells, a military family stationed at Fort Wainwright, post daily video blogs, or vlogs, on YouTube. “The first year I was like, extremely nervous,” said mom and U.S. Army wife Kiara Cassell. Her days usually start with coffee, cooking […]

  • ‘I’m going to protect what I got’: Elderly Fairview man robbed 3 times in a month

    by Eric Ruble on Feb 24, 23:24

    A 71-year-old Fairview man said thieves robbed him at his home three times between Jan. 19 and Feb. 20. Lee Perkins has lived in an apartment on Karluk Street for about one year. He said during the first incident, a man knocked on his door asking for a cigarette. When Perkins turned around, the man […]

  • Politics

    Cook Inlet conservation corridor debated at Board of Fisheries meeting

    by Shannon Ballard on Feb 24, 19:51

    It takes fish to make fish and that has members of the Matanuska-Susitna Borough’s Fish and Wildlife Commission worried. On Friday morning, commission members brought their concerns to the Board of Fisheries. They want to ensure that the Cook Inlet conservation corridor, established back in 2014, remains in place. The corridor restricts some commercial fishing in […]

  • News

    Fur Rondy provides winter fun for locals and visitors

    by Heather Hintze on Feb 24, 19:38

    Are you ready to Rondy? The 2017 Fur Rendezvous winter festival kicked off Friday afternoon. Many who live in Alaska don’t find it unusual to take a Ferris wheel ride in the freezing cold, or run with reindeer through the streets of Anchorage. For people in the Lower 48, Fur Rondy is a chance to see […]

  • Body cam shows use of deadly force by Fairbanks officer, no criminal charges filed

    by Sierra Starks on Feb 24, 18:40

    In an unprecedented move, the Fairbanks Police Department have released body camera footage of an August 2016 incident during which a sergeant shot and killed an armed man. James Robert Richards, 28, was shot twice in the head after assaulting two people at the Alaska Motel and leading police on a chase through downtown Fairbanks, according to the […]

  • News

    Half a million Little Tikes swings recalled following reports of injuries

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Feb 24, 16:11

    More than half a million Little Tikes swings have been recalled after a number of injuries were reported, according to a notice on the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s (CPSC) website. The recall notice states that Little Tikes has received more than 140 reports of the 2-in-1 Snug’n Secure pink toddler swings breaking. Of those […]

  • Politics

    Dozens demand town hall meeting with Sen. Sullivan during annual address to lawmakers

    by Liz Raines on Feb 24, 15:25

    A group of about 50 people gathered in front of the state capitol building in Juneau to demand a town hall meeting with Alaska Sen. Dan Sullivan Friday afternoon. Sullivan was in Juneau to deliver an annual address to lawmakers on his work in Congress. In his speech, the Republican senator did not reference the […]

  • News

    Addicts using pets to score drugs, veterinarians warn

    by Jennifer Earl / CBS News on Feb 24, 15:18

    As animal lovers, veterinarians pride themselves on being trusting and caring people. They don’t want to believe anyone would intentionally hurt their pet, but in recent years, they’ve had to train themselves to look out for those who do just that as drug addicts turn toward animals to score pain medication they can’t easily access. […]