Here are a couple of Bristol Bay notes.
• A new road is planned to connect the village of Naknek to Pederson Point. The North Pacific Seafoods salmon cannery is located on the point, currently accessible only by taking a four-wheel-drive along the beach at low tide. Paug-Vik Inc., the Native village corporation for Naknek, wants to extend an overland road 1.7 miles from the east to reach Pederson Point. Paug-Vik says the road would provide year-round access to the point and would improve transportation of fish to Naknek, hub of Bristol Bay's salmon industry. For more information and a map, start here.
• The staff of a state agency, the Local Boundary Commission, has recommended approval of the city of Dillingham's petition to annex extensive commercial fishing grounds (map). The staff's conclusion starts on p. 84 of this preliminary report. At the end of the report, you can find letters from people for and against annexing the new territory. The annexation is still subject to commission approval, plus a vote of Dillingham area residents. For background, here's an item published in a recent issue of Pacific Fishing magazine:
Dillingham's expansion plan
The Bristol Bay city of Dillingham wants to get bigger, way bigger, and collect a lot more tax revenue.
To achieve its goals, the city has petitioned the state Local Boundary Commission to annex rich commercial salmon fishing grounds adjacent to town, including the Nushagak District and the Wood River special harvest area. In all, the city of about 36 square miles is seeking to add 396 square miles of water plus three square miles of islands.
In conjunction with the annexation, the city aims to impose a new local raw fish tax. The 2.5 percent levy would raise an estimated $710,833 annually beginning in 2012.
In their petition, Dillingham officials say they need more revenue to cover and improve city services. The city's population of 2,350 people nearly doubles during the summer fishing season, with up to 700 vessels jamming the city harbor. Most are not Dillingham residents, yet they use the harbor, boat ramps, parking areas, restrooms and bathhouse, and benefit from the city's trash hauling, street maintenance and more.
The proposed tax would extend to the roughly 50 percent of Nushagak Bay salmon delivered outside the district for processing, Dillingham's petition says.
Dillingham officials note that wrapping city limits around fishing waters is nothing new. The commission approved it for Egegik, Pilot Point, St. Paul and Togiak.