Friday, January 14, 2011

This will take only a few minutes...

The National Marine Fisheries Service wants to know: What is the contribution of fishing and seafood processing to the Southeast Alaska economy?

The agency is conducting a survey to find out, and you might be asked to participate.

More information here.


Anonymous said...

Good to let them know the value, but the agency uses those fucked up value assesments for all kind of how much would the average citizen "pay" for more sea lions as it it's some kind of real way to weigh their decisions. A bunch of bullshit, it all is.

Anonymous said...

I have been chosen as one of the people in this survey and I am wondering what do we fishermen think of this. On the news today was a story on how NMFS is basically harassing fishermen from coast to coast and now they want to know more about us. I would think directors of fishing groups here in Alaska would have something to say but I know some are Obama supporters so that answers that. What do we think Mike Svenson Sitka

Anonymous said...

Mike, just give them your honest answers. In terms of the direct economic value (exvessel, first wholesale...etc) they already have a lot of that $$value. What often gets undervalued (and against us) is the more intrisic, ethereal value of commercial fishing. That's the counter part of where they claim that lower 48 individuals would be willing to "pay" hundreds/thousands o bucks to "save" a sea lion, polar bear, sea name it, they'll try to put a value on it. Oh, how NEPA and the ESA have been perverted.

Anonymous said...

Or how much more SE needs the 3A halibut than do those schmucks in Kodiak?

Anonymous said...

"schmuks in Kodiak?"

Evidently living in 2C, always makes for an interesting conception of reality.

And just another NOAA Study, spending money on what the rest of the fleet has known forever, where do the schmucks live, 3A, or 2C?

Anonymous said...

Survey for schmuks sounds like.

Anonymous said...

yeah. survey for schmuks.

don't put down what we really contribute.

let's let folks treat us like the screwed up cottage-colonial industry that we act like in general. myself not excluded.

last year we were being discussed as having to have complete transfers of records for all crew and having major paperwork headaches. anyone who harbored a child on his boat under the age of 18 would be doing time or firing the kid. how many of us started under 18. the crew-data project died a swift death, but we need to replicate the data on crew, etc that the draconian legislation would have promoted.

if this is all we have to do to show that we are economically relevant then let's 'get er done'

what the heck. what do we want to do, mislead decision-makers and not provide them with reliable information or data so that they think we're not worth keeping around? Or have unreliable enough data that we have to have 100% filing with crew-permit smart cards whenever you hire a new guy. geez, i can't always even get my permit card or vessel reg on time. how about adding 5 crew in summer and 5 in the fall and having to do a new state or federal accounting system of their time on the boat. we'd be in for a real documentation headache

i'm going to send them my fish tickets or whatever they want this one time. we should be doing this every 5 or 10 years.

certainly the economics of salmon has changed these past 5 years and why not recognize that fact and ensure that decision-makers recognize that fact so they don't throw us 5 cent humpy fishermen under the bus just when they recognize that maybe a humpy fisherman is worth keeping around after all.


Anonymous said...

bobby if they just wanted to know how important we are any state agency could give them that info. i dont fish halibut or blackcod so they want to know about state fishing.I realy wish our state fishing groups would be a little more wary of the feds. maybe getting money is the most important thing mike svenson sitka

Anonymous said...

I also have received a survey. I am very wary about giving the Feds any info. I think they are trying to figure out how much more they can tax us or how much more(area ect.) they will be able to take from us. In light of the SE purse seine buyback it makes me wonder if they are thinking about rationalizing the fishery because of subsistence charter and supposedly overfishing concerns. We all know that if the buyback is voted in the Feds WILL
have access to our salmon fish tickets and even though they put it in the law that the Feds cannot use the info for anything other then making sure we are paying the money back from the's one of those things that makes me go hmmmmmm... If you have been listening to fishery policies on a national level they would like to have commercial fishers only fish hatchery fish and leave the "wild" run to sporties, charters, personal use and subsistence. I for one will not be giving them any ifo. which I think they could use to make a tenious situation worse.

Anonymous said...

I thought they were supposed to make decisions based on the science and sustainibilty of the resource not on how much money we make and our crew get or how much we contribute to SE AK's economy.

Anonymous said...

If the Feds had all the crew info before they implemented the IFQ system maybe us old time crew members would of not got kicked to the curb. I think I deserve my 12 percent of my vessel owners gross, that was my historical take.. Look at the crab ratz. Maybe the letting of crew information is critical to the future of our industries?

Anonymous said...

Food for thought when was the last time the Feds kept their word on anything. There is always a snake in the grass that seems to come back and bite us(fisherman) in the ass, especially when it comes to the Feds.
I choose to give them as little as possible.

Glenn said...

If you're seriously interested in this issue you should invest an hour or more of your time and call the people doing this survey. Ask them every question that comes into your mind. Keep asking until all of your questions are answered and make sense to you.

If that doesn't happen, recycle the survey.

Anonymous said...

If you guys would read the link posted in this story you would have a better understanding of the survey. I for one will participate and try to show how my business contributes. Plus, my information won't be shared so I'm not worried.

Chang Seung said...

Hello All,

My name is Chang Seung, one of the researchers who are fielding this survey. I’ve read the comments in this blog and I see that several fishermen have expressed concerns about this survey. The purpose of the Southeast Alaska Economic Activity survey is to gather economic information on fishing activities. There are two important reasons for this survey (more details are given in the link provided in the blog, which I hope all of you read). First, the data collected will enable economists at NOAA to measure the contribution of fishing activities to the Southeast Alaska regional economy by allowing calculation of total jobs and income generated throughout the regional economy by these activities. Second, the data will be used to calculate the impacts of fishery management policies on the Southeast Alaska regional economy. Correctly calculating both negative and positive economic impacts of fishery management actions enhances policy makers’ ability to consider and minimize unforeseen negative impacts of fisheries management on harvesters, processors, and fishing communities.

Some comments on this blog have expressed concern that the government will use the collected data to calculate taxes or benefits that will in turn be extracted from commercial fishermen. Others expressed concern that the data will be used to reallocate fishing rights from commercial fishermen to sport, charter, or subsistence fishermen. While I understand your concerns, I can assure you there is absolutely no truth to these statements. The data collected will be strictly confidential and used only for calculating the role of Southeast commercial fisheries in fishing-dependent communities in the region, and to aid fishery managers in formulating policies that maximize long-term benefits of commercial fisheries to fishermen and their communities.

It has been nearly 10 years since an economic survey of Southeast Alaska was conducted. (The last was conducted by Alaska Department of Fish and Game.) Many things have changed since that time. For example, the prices of inputs (e.g., fuel and food) have changed dramatically. Also, quota-based systems for several regional fisheries have been instituted during that time. These and other factors have changed the way regional fisheries are conducted. But the currently available data fails to reflect those developments.

To reliably measure the contribution of your fishing activity based on the most recent information, there is an ongoing need to update and improve our understanding of Southeast regional economies. The only way to do this is by collecting primary data from volunteer participants in the local economy.

If you have any more questions or concerns, please voice them and I will do my best to respond. Thanks again for your participation in the survey.

Chang Seung
Alaska Fisheries Science Center, NMFS

Anonymous said...

Mr Seung, I have a question for you. I dont do any fed fisheries so my info will all relate to state fisheries. Why are you doing this and not the state,is NMFS in on any of the management of state fisheries, and I have heard there is alot of srrings now attached to fed money are there some kind of strings to this.I am sure you understand the economy up around the aluetion islands yet you still close it because of sea otters so what are you trying to understand. fisheries have been going on forever and yet the feds want to put in some MMAs Maybe Im just paranoid but it does seem like under obama any info they get somebodys going to get screwed Mike Svenson

Chang Seung said...

Hi Mike,
Thanks for your comments. State fisheries also contribute significantly to Southeast AK economy. So it will be much appreciated if you can provide the requested data for the fisheries. There is no strings attached to the fed money. As I said in my previous message, the data collected will not be used to extract any benefits from commercial fishermen. Thanks. Chang.

Anonymous said...

Dr Mr Seung, You may assure us everything is confidential and "the data collected will be strictly confidential and used only for calculating the role of Southeast commercial fisheries" and that may be the case at present, but that doesn't mean things won't change in the future.

When Social Security came out, citizens were assured that a SS# wouldn't be used as a method of identification. I've seen my dad's original SS card. It says right on it, "Not to be used for identification purposes". Doesn't mean a damn thing now does it.

Also, one of the most valuable tools a fisherman has is his knowledge, when, where, and how to be in a certain spot for the best catches. Now, fishermen are forced to give up that valuable information in order to participate in many fisheries, all in the name of management. But that information has been used against us.

So pardon anyone's paranoid feelings here, but we've been burned before.


Chang Seung said...

Dear Rick,
Thanks for your comments. I am sorry for your unfortunate experience. And I do understand fishermen when they are paranoid about surveys. I wish I could better assure you that the data to be collected in this survey will not be used to the disadvantage of the Southeast Alaska fishermen, but be used to measure the importance of Southeast Alaska fisheries. Thanks again for your comments. Chang.

Anonymous said...

Regarding SS# --Bingo, this writer inadvertently reveals what is wrong with so much of the dialog on this blog and elsewhere: Jumping to the wrong conclusion, based on just the "facts," ma'am.

That his father's SS card states clearly to anyone who can read "not to be used for identification purposes" is a fact cannot be contested, but his conclusion that the SS# cannot be used to confirm identity is based on a faulty interpretation of the fact.

Plain and simple, the statement on the social security card means that it is not a legally valid ID -- just try using it when pulled over for a traffic violation, boarding an airplane, or entering another country. It ain't gonna work. A valid ID is a driver's license and a passport. Get it?

On the other hand, a goverment or a business is not prohibited from asking for your SS# along with your name, address, and birthdate to confirm your identify for a transaction.

So, this jumping to the wrong conclusion based on faulty, ill-informed interpretation of facts is what too often transpires in the development of fisheries management policy, especially when a bunch of self-interested businessmen (fishermen) are doing the interpreting.

I hate to break it to you: There is not a commie under every bed or under every survey instrument.

Oh and one other fact to remember: those fish swimming freely are not yours, they are all of ours.