Wednesday, April 4, 2012

CDQ champions recognized

Deckboss certainly didn't receive an invitation. Heck, he didn't even known it was happening.

But apparently a big event was held last week in Anchorage to celebrate the 20-year anniversary of the Community Development Quota program.

The festivities included recognizing 15 people who helped create one of Alaska's "most innovative and successful economic development projects."

Among the honorees: the late Sen. Ted Stevens, the late Harvey Samuelsen of Dillingham, former state "fisheries tsar" Clem Tillion of Halibut Cove, and former Anchorage banker Ed Rasmuson.

For the complete list and more details on the March 30 celebration, check out this press release.

Launched in 1992, the CDQ program is a government initiative that reserves roughly 10 percent of the Bering Sea's lucrative fish and crab quotas for the benefit of Western Alaska villages. Six companies represent groups of villages, managing their seafood harvests and investments.

The six CDQ companies have amassed hundreds of millions of dollars in assets, including interests in large fishing vessels and processing plants. Creating rural jobs and educational opportunities is a major focus for the CDQ program, its leaders say.


Anonymous said...

There are some folks on this list that don't belong.

Anonymous said...

Government sanctioned pirates.

No different than Somalian piracy, extracting "fees" for merely being near a large body of water that has great commercial value.

Another Ted Stevens crime.

Anonymous said...

Sssshhhh... did you hear that pin drop?

Tim Smith said...

Heroes? Is that what the kids these days are calling people who do those kinds of things? It was very revealing that they kept the 20 year celebration so quiet. What are they afraid of? One would think that they would be proud of their accomplishments after 20 years.

It was a celebration for the CDQ elite, most of whom live in Anchorage, and the politicians who made their high falluting urban lifestyles possible. I wasn't there but an eye-witness told me it was a veritable orgy of self-aggrandizement and pilings on of unearned credit from a carefully screened mutual admiration society.

The unwashed masses from the CDQ communities weren't invited and wouldn't have been welcome at the event had we tried to get in. Our only role in the CDQ program is being poor which creates the need for the program. If we weren't poor, we wouldn't be any good to them so we continue to do what we do best and little more.

I was in Anchorage at the time attending the NPFMC meeting and heard about the celebration in offhand conversation with someone from Dutch Harbor who was invited. I thought about going over to the Dena'ina Center Friday night but decided not to deal with the ruckus that would have certainly ensued. I was pretty sure I wouldn't have been able to get in no matter how hard I argued that as a stakeholder I had a right to be there, so I took my nephew to a movie instead. I would have liked to have listened to the flowery speeches. As a student of cognitive dissonance, such things fascinate me.

I heard that the politicians warned the CDQ groups about pocketing too much of the CDQ program money but there is no way that is ever going to change without regulations preventing it.

I also heard that there was a lot of blowharding about all of the jobs and fisheries related economic development the CDQ program has created in the 65 eligible communities. I asked some of the people from the bush who were at the council meeting what was happening in their villages and they weren't aware of any of that. Like me, they haven't seen it the way the people from Anchorage and Washington D.C. see it. I guess CDQ program benefits are a lot like the Emperor's New Clothes in the Hans Christian Anderson tale. Only true believers and the gullible can see them. Most of the people I know who live in the 65 communities, who aren't in on the take, just see a pathetic naked disgrace that should be an embarrassment for everybody involved.

Question: Where could something like the CDQ program work? The government just dumped hundreds of millions of dollars at the feet of a bunch of impoverished people with no clear rules for how that money was supposed to be used and no meaningful oversight.

Answer: Not in western Alaska that's for damned sure. Probably not anywhere.

So what is in store for the CDQ program during the next 20 years? Hopefully not more of the same. That would be a tragedy. It is becoming increasingly difficult to live in coastal communities largely because of skyrocketing energy costs. The CDQ program offers a way to help people earn a living that has more potential for success than anything that has been tried previously. Allowing it to be hijacked and moved to Anchorage and Seattle is a crime against humanity.

The State of Alaska is in the midst of a decennial review of the CDQ program. An objective review will reveal a reality a lot different than what the speechmakers at the 20th anniversary gala told the congregation. I hope we get that kind of review.

Groundswell Fisheries Movement

Anonymous said...

Wow Tim, when did you start writing for the ground swill?

Anonymous said...

Back when the villages had fishermen like Harvey, they went fishin.

Now the new generation, goes politikin for pork, and they believe that money buys happiness?

Like the Young Fisherman's Summit, and the college class of "How to Buy a Politician."

Halibut Cove?

Tim Smith said...

Glad you asked Mr. T. I signed on with Groundswell when it became apparent that rationalization locked fishermen who didn't have lots of money out of fisheries and led to abusive consolidation and monopolization of our public resources. All rationalization did was replace one tragedy of the commons with another that is even worse. Much worse.

The CDQ program is the worst form of rationalization yet. This invitation only, 20 year anniversary shindig is symbolic of what the program is about. The people at the trough patting themselves on the back hold an exclusive monopoly and they aren't about to give it up. The rest of us are locked out, not only from the gala event but from participation in the CDQ program itself.

99.5% of the residents of the 15 communities in our region don't have any reason to celebrate. Ironically, the CDQ program has created an impenetrable barrier to entry into fisheries related economic activity in coastal communities for all but the chosen few. Privatization of our fisheries resources sucks for most of us. It seemed like a good idea at the time but the way it has evolved is a lot different than how it was advertised.

Groundswell Fisheries Movement

Anonymous said...

Tim Smith and Stephan Taufen... what a pair to draw to! A Civil Union made in Hades!

Tim Smith said...

We're offering a very attractive spring special on souls this month but I checked with the boss and he said we picked yours up years ago at a very good price.

Anonymous said...

"politikin for pork" and that's exactly it. On the American peoples dime - CDQ program of the Western Alaska Coastal Area, the poorest in the state. The people are not free, they have no say in how the CDQs are managed.

It looks as though it is on paper. Representatives on the CDQ Board of Directors from the villages supposedly engaged in fisheries related topics for their free Government Monies to help develop economic development for their impoverished communities.

"politikin for pork" or pimping for pork is more like it. Get it any way you can even if it means to destroy certain stakeholders who have a right to be involved. That's abusive and discriminatory. Our country and state laws are suppose to protect us. Pimping for CDQ pork.

Anonymous said...

Referencing the comment "Civil Union" is a tad bit off, it's more like Civil Rights supposedly given to the common citizen as mandated in the Constitution of the United States of America.

The "monopolization of our public resources" in reference to the CDQ program couldn't have been said any simpler. That's whats going on.

Anonymous said...


The correct header would contain; We are the Champions of the World!

501(c)(4) organizations are generally civic leagues and other corporations operated exclusively for the promotion of social welfare, or local associations of employees with membership limited to a designated company or people in a particular municipality or neighborhood, and with net earnings devoted exclusively to charitable, educational, or recreational purposes.

Anonymous said...

IRS Code 501(c)(4)(A)Civic leagues or organizations not organized for profit but operated exclusively for the promotion of social welfare...

It's a little hard to reconcile multi-million dollar for-profit commercial fishing operations with the IRS code quoted above but that is what the CDQ groups have evolved into. Their "not organized for profit" for-profit operations dwarf their social welfare functions.

How do you compete in the fishing business with tax exempt corporations having unlimited funds? The first thing that happened in our area is that every private sector fisheries related business got squeezed out. Today there is no way for an individual to do anything fisheries related in Norton Sound because NSEDC is an abusive monopoly that does not tolerate privately owned business ventures. You are either part of the exclusive club or you are totally locked out by unfair competition. There is nothing in between.

Monopolies suck and tax exempt monopolies suck the worst.

Anonymous said...

welfare tsar, Clem Tillion is very proud of his new deal...the most innovative wefare system ever invented.

Look and see, our welfare queens...coming soon to a new leader near you!

Alaska Leader your local loosers, Harvey would be PROUD!

Anonymous said...

Clem wasn't born yesterday. If you think he doesn't know what the CDQ program has become you need to think again.

Anonymous said...

Look we saw the structural issues with the ANCSA corporations and 8A contracting. Few if any benefits reached the shareholders. To remedy that injustice we created the CDQ program. The only members are the boards of directors, no shareholders,
no social injustice. And we realized what a problem federal oversight of the 8a program proved to be so we got rid of that too; CDQ's self congradulate instead. I wish you critics in the peanut gallery would quiet down and let the show roll on!

Anonymous said...

The Peanut Gallery? It's fun to watch Mr. Welfare Himself!

Tim Smith said...

Shareholders were the fly in the ointment for ANCSA corporations. Shareholders have rights and if they ever wake up from their 40 year nap, they have a legal right to participate actively in their corporations' governance. They could even replace the managers from time to time with ones they consider more responsive to their needs if they ever become involved enough to invoke their rights as shareholders.

CDQs took care of that little problem. The MSA required CDQ groups be nonprofit corporations. Instead of shareholders. Nonprofit corporations are owned by their members. Members have about the same rights as shareholders in for-profit corporations. Except that CDQ corporations don't have any members. That's right, no members, and so the residents of the 65 CDQ communities have no rights. The management is accountable to no one. Hey, that should work out great, eh? Remember Enron?

Anonymous said...

It's funny to read the press release obviously written by Cotter. At the top of the list is Gilda S. and Justine G., two who had about as much to do with making the CDQ happen as I did (which is nothing). At the bottom are Hickel, Tillion, and Mitchell; the guys that actually made the sausage. So much for the so-called red face test. At least Larry was coy enough not list himself!

Anonymous said...

This is a great program, doing great things for Western Alaska.

I don't understand the hostility many of you have but this program is resulting in Alaskan communities owning the resources that surround them. 20 years ago they were on the beach watching as boats were driving past their communities. Now they are participating in them or have opportunities to.

This program is accomplishing great things, bringing opportunities and hope to a part of Alaska that is in rough shape. The program is still fairly new and is already impacting its communities. I look forward to seeing it grow more and accomplish more things. Congratulations to the program and here's to another 20!

Anonymous said...

Fairly new? How do you figure?

Where do you live?

Tim Smith said...

"I don't understand the hostility many of you have but this program is resulting in Alaskan communities owning the resources that surround them. 20 years ago they were on the beach watching as boats were driving past their communities. Now they are participating in them or have opportunities to."

The anniversary gala and the comment above demonstrates that the CDQ program looks a lot better from a distance than it does from one of the 65 eligible communities.

I just received an email from one of the Norton Sound villages responding to the following question: How many people in your village are working at a job or business created by the CDQ program today?

My correspondent replied: "At this time NSEDC employs 1 Liason in [village name omitted to protect the innocent] for $500.00 month salary and no businesses created thereof."

When someone living in a non-CDQ eligible community says something like, "This program is accomplishing great things, bringing opportunities and hope to a part of Alaska that is in rough shape.", those of us who live in one of those communities wonder where they are getting their information. Strangely enough, the conversation always ends about the time we ask that question and they find that they have urgent business elsewhere.

An objective decennial review of the CDQ program would be very informative. The State of Alaska should conduct such a review instead of the whitewash that is planned.

Anonymous said...

@April 8, 2012 8:28 AM

You are absolutely correct in your assessment. I do believe, however, that most CDQ's perform a good in their educational efforts, i.e. training and schooling even if it is more eyewash and cake icing than anything. They do it because they have too but it perhaps is the only real benefit the average stakeholder can ever get.

The CDQ groups grumbled under the old system of State over site because there was restricting criteria, now it is truly a free for all.

One of the biggest mistakes about the structure of the CDQ's was (is) governance; I worked in villages that average person knew absolutely nothing about the goings on within the CDQ even though there was a so-called 'community liaison' that was paid to disseminate information!

Tim Smith said...

Like everything else associated with the CDQ program, believing that the CDQ group education and training programs are accomplishing anything meaningful requires blind faith because you sure aren't going to get any evidence to support your faith-based beliefs.

The only information available for the Norton Sound region is how much money is doled out for scholarships and vocational training to how many students. I've asked repeatedly for some data showing how many scholarship recipients graduate from college and how many vocational students put their training to work and I'm told that analysis is just too difficult for the $110,000/year Education and Training Coordinator and CDQ program champion. The NSEDC board of directors has asked for it too but nobody pays any attention to what they want. It would be nice to know how many of these students come back to the region and put their education and training to work doing what the CDQ program was supposed to do.

Some students would graduate with or without the scholarships provided by NSEDC as they did before the CDQ program came along. What we need to know is how many more are graduating because of the $852,690 spent on scholarships and training during 2010 for example. My guess is that we are spending a ridiculous amount per year per graduate. It appears that most of the scholarship recipients only go for a semester or two but there are no available data on that.

Higher education is as mom and apple pie as it gets in America but there is no reason to be stupid about it. Maybe if we took a look at why we are getting so little return on our investment we could make the programs more effective but that would require work and who wants to do that when you can just bedazzle them with platitudes and they politely don't see that the emperor wears no clothes.

You are correct about the lack of viable governance structures; Congress, the NPFMC and the State of Alaska all dropped the ball on that apparently thinking that good governance would just magically emerge once the money was dropped on us. Apparently they have to keep relearning hard lessons about the nature of human nature.

Anonymous said...

... even the resurrection of Christ had people who didn't believe. there will never be a fisheries program out there that doesn't have a "Doubting Thomas" or two in this case Doubting Tim. Tim would have people believe that us people on the Sound aren't being represented and he and only he has the pulse of what the people on the Sound want. Well if that was the case... he'd be the board member representing NSEDC. But the majority of people in Nome see Tim for who he really is... the Jim Jones of Norton Sound. Only in this case... he hasn't had enough people drink his brand of Kool-Aid and lost badly in his efforts to become a board member. Even his disciples who made a run at the board seat lost! What we have here is a vocal minority screaming loudly... and teaming up with another nut case in the Gulf of Alaska spewing forth "a tale told by an idiot(s), full of sound and fury,
signifying nothing."

Anonymous said...

Wow, so convincing, except that ANYONE who has been NEAR a CDQ entity and not on the take, knows how corrupt and wasteful they are.

Tim Smith said...

Far be it from me to cast aspersions on the resurrection story on Easter Sunday but why do we have to take the CDQ program successes on faith alone? They are not happening 2000 years ago, they are happening in real time.

Why are all of the NSEDC financial records kept confidential? For that matter, why are the educational records and practically every other record related to the CDQ groups' activities confidential? If things are going the way the anonymous blogger says they are, why don't they publish the documentation and let us decide if the facts support what they say?

It is commonly understood that people who hide everything have something to hide. It is incomprehensible that the CDQ groups would keep all of the information needed to evaluate their performance secret if they were doing as well as they say they are. Doing everything in secrecy creates suspicion that could easily be dispelled with transparency. The excuses given for avoiding transparency don't ring true.

But don't take my word for it. This is what a committee from the National Research Council said about that and nothing has changed since they published their findings:

“In general, some of the quantifiable factors can be evaluated by comparing conditions before the CDQ program and changes since the program's implementation. However, in some cases the data are not available to adequately measure such changes. Data about the CDQ program that precisely details the benefits received by the CDQ communities can be difficult to obtain. One of these difficulties is due to the newness of the program and the inability to draw clear conclusions from the limited data that are available. A second difficulty is a State of Alaska law...that certain financial and catch data can be maintained as confidential. These conditions make it difficult to provide detailed analysis of the benefits received by the CDQ program.” The Community Development Quota Program in Alaska and Lessons for the Western Pacific Committee to Review Community Development Quotas, Ocean Studies Board Commission on Geosciences, Environment and Resources, National Research Council National Academy Press Washington DC 1999 p.57.

Anonymous said...

I made the comment earlier praising the program. I in fact live in a CDQ community. I don’t feel the need to specify exactly where, it doesn’t qualify my opinion any more or any less.

With small populations in these communities there are few jobs in administration, services and maintenance. A majority of the work available is seasonal and fishing-based and demands hard work – that is what most of the work in a village is going to be, no matter the village. These are the jobs CDQs are creating right now. It takes time to build up a skilled labor pool, the CDQ group in my region promotes education and training programs not because it HAS to but it does so in an effort to create skilled employment.

College is tough enough as it is and its’ harder for kids from the village, who have spent their whole lives there, to go to a larger city, deal with living there and get through the courses. There is a cultural barrier and of course some aren’t going to finish. The kids who do make it through and come back make a difference in their communities; they are more productive and provide inspiration to others who want to build themselves up.

Without the program there would be a lot less economic opportunities. But it’s up to individuals to capitalize on them. Nobody talks about the social problems, the alcohol abuse and mindset that develops with generational poverty, that keeps these opportunities from being maximized. The CDQ program doesn’t currently address those problems directly (that I know of) and I think its keeping progress from advancing faster. Nonetheless they are doing more than some of you give them credit for and facing obstacles that are difficult to address.

I’m calling it as I see it and I’ll continue to defend the program as long as it’s in the right.

Anonymous said...

The reason I asked where you live is that it does matter. There are six CDQs and they are not all the same. If yours is working that's great but that doesn't mean they all are.

Anonymous said...

Hey anonymouse at 12:57. Your personal attacks would be a lot more impressive if some of your facts were true.

They aren't and it isn't.

Anonymous said...

I think WAFDA, as a matter of due diligence and self discipline, to prove wrong the detractors, and support the promoters of the CDQ Program should demand a joint Congressional,Alaska Legislative body travel to every CDQ eligible community throughout the decennial review year of 2012, and request testimony from the programs recipients. I firmly believe it would eradicate the Doubting Thomas's from public discourse.Forums like this can only invite a clash of opposites. Only the grownups at WAFDA have the clout or responsibility to their constituents to say " Come, let us reason."

Anonymous said...

"Tim Smith said...
Like everything else associated with the CDQ program, believing that the CDQ group education and training programs are accomplishing anything meaningful requires blind faith because you sure aren't going to get any evidence to support your faith-based beliefs."

Tim, you need to read more carefully, I wrote: 'Even if it is more eyewash and cake icing than anything.' meaning just that. No blind faith required. I have seen, first hand, the result of individuals in the CDQ organization I worked for benefiting from that largess. Yes, it is, at times wasteful at worst, but beneficial sometimes. Again, it's the best that the average can get out of the CDQ system. Of course, that is miserable and pathetic given the whole and that is my point.

Your passion supersedes attention to what is being relayed.

Anonymous said...

wes guy, ya know the most coments yer ever get has todo with dcqs and that bbt dude. whats up with that?

Anonymous said...

I think it's basically racketeering.This program once belonged to everyone in Western Alaska. Now it's owned by no one. Cowed boards that nod their heads to manipulative partners.And insulate themselves with per diems that insulate them from the incurable poverty in their villages. The Council is protected from antitrust regulation.
But any US citizen can personally address racketeering.If this isn't a racket, nothing is.

Tim Smith said...

I don't understand why we should acquiesce to mediocrity just because that is what we have gotten in rural Alaska during the last 40 years. We should not have to settle for eyewash and cake icing.

The people running the programs are being paid salaries far exceeding those paid to the best and brightest in successful organizations in Alaska.

The CDQ program has brought in a tremendous amount of revenue that could be brought to bear in addressing the abject poverty and lack of purpose experienced by people in the villages.

With the massive resources available and comparatively clearly defined objectives, why is it doing so little?

The 2010 census reports there are only 27,000 people living in the 65 CDQ eligible villages. Per capita, the CDQ program has brought in more working capital than ANCSA and the revenue stream comes from a renewable resource that should be inexhaustible. Where is the problem?

The National Research Council CDQ committee members wanted to do an in-depth study that might have provided some valuable guidance but they were frustrated by the secrecy of CDQ group managers. Their report asks a lot of questions but provides few answers because they couldn't get the data they needed for the analysis.

We are in the midst of another study, this one by the State of Alaska, that provides an opportunity to make the program more effective. I am afraid that this one will be stymied by the same lack of objective performance data. If that happens it will be another in a long series of failings to do the right thing for the people living in rural Alaska. That doesn't have to happen this time.

Anonymous said...

What most people don't know is there was once 'objective performance data' when the Sate had over site. The nifty Coast guard Bill removed that. The so-called 'Blue Ribbon Panel' that Murkowski arranged that gave recommendations to make the CDQ's more like business's could have been written by Jeff Keith Skilling, Ken Lay, Dick Fuld or Jon Corzine! If you try and read the financials that CDQ's report to their constituents you can only laugh. No details. All blue sky. The tragedy is that so many of the 'investments' that are on the books only represent debt. If the tit (pollack) dries, there is a big bag that the communities will hold. After all, someone is on the hook.

Anonymous said...

The American people are on the hook.
Congress authorized the CDQ program.
Congress stripped it of oversight.
Congress can demand their books, hold hearings in committee, and legislate a governance structure.

Anonymous said...

Congress could also solicit a legal opinion to determine if it's trust relationship and responsibilities with dependent nations and tribes extend to CDQ oversight & management.

Anonymous said...

In order for Congress to "solicit a legal opinion to determine if it's trust relationship and responsibilities with dependent nations and tribes...", first they have to declare that the Nation's Resources in the Bering Sea belongs specifically to the Native Peoples who live along the shores of our great nation. This whole approach would throw a wrench into the pie as all the coastal people from the east to the west would be implicated.

It's discriminatory to designate a specific bit of our Nations Resources to a Race specific group.

Anonymous said...

Them Eskimos never saw a pollock in there hole life and they probley never will. Why do they get pollock and crab quota??? Greedy corporate directors that's why. Just another way to rip off and rob hard working legitimate Alaskan commercial fishermen. Why doesn't the rest of the united states have CDQ's ? Why only Alaska? People commercial fish in all the states that are able to. Why are Alaskan fishermen only paying the price? Lots of questions NO answers

Anonymous said...

The presentations and award ceremony were OPEN to the PUBLIC.
The dinner was the only part that was not, due to the number the room could hold.

Let us all remember that there are more then just ONE CDQ Group in Western AK, so if you wish to speak badly about your area do so and name your CDQ Group, because were I am from, they are doing great things for our communities.

Thank you,
Aleutian Breeze

Tim Smith said...

What is your basis for saying:

"The presentations and award ceremony were OPEN to the PUBLIC."

How would anyone have known that, if it is true, or how could anyone have found out when the gala went from being closed to open?

Tim Smith said...

Anonymous wrote, "It's discriminatory to designate a specific bit of our Nations Resources to a Race specific group."

That issue is widely misunderstood. The CDQ program is not race specific. The CDQs are allocated to the 65 eligible communities and the residents of those communities participate in the CDQ program regardless of race.

Anonymous said...

Tim the afternoon meeting WAS open to the public. I attended but didn't pay particular attention to how WACDA advertised the event. It was interesting to see what the different groups were doing in their respective communities, it is unfortunate you didn't go.

I'm glad you clarified the nature of the program, it is indeed not race specific but a program based on residency.

Them Eskimos never saw a pollock in there hole life and they probley never will. Why do they get pollock and crab quota??? Greedy corporate directors that's why. Just another way to rip off and rob hard working legitimate Alaskan commercial fishermen. Why doesn't the rest of the united states have CDQ's ? Why only Alaska? People commercial fish in all the states that are able to. Why are Alaskan fishermen only paying the price? Lots of questions NO answers

You mean Seattle fishermen? Are you mad that they were called out on manifest destiny? For crying out loud the villages only get 10% of the pollock. I think they deserve a bit more than that.

I see community ownership of quota as benefiting the resource. These people have a long-term interest in the health of the stocks. They can exercise better stewardship when it comes to fishery management and the actual fishing itself.

Anonymous said...

It's great! 20 years! No banquets in the villages, of course not. They could really use it though, real tough winter. No bush community members fed out west on the tundra, just the true owners,mostly bored board members & their handlers. At the Denial Center. A sea of denial.
Our empty rivers salmon bycatch are diverted to food banks in Seattle, Anchorage or Fairbanks, at best. More likely dumped overboard dead.
The true beauty of all this is we no longer need to import exploiters.
We've got this really great corporate training program you see. Don't you?

Anonymous said...

No... I mean hard working Alaskan fishermen. Do you even know how much ten percent of the quota is? CDQ group boats shouldn't be allowed to fish anywhere but the Bering sea. Them new Fred Wahl's are just about wiping the gulf out.

Anonymous said...

Ouch, ouch, ouch! Blogger on April 10 at 6:04PM couldn't have said it any simpler, "bored board members & their handlers"!

The most transparent thing about this whole CDQ issue is that we know the NAMES of these "bored board members & their handlers" and when the last salmon in all of the rivers in Western Alaska is counted, we will know who to hold accountable!

Anonymous said...

"WACDA advertised the event"?????

Keep it quiet, keep it low because they continue to fool some of the people who's culture and tradition is being destroyed.

W=Waste; A=All; C=Community; D=Development; A=Allocations!

Anonymous said...

"For crying out loud, they only get 10%, they deserve more."

For what? Sitting on their asses? Give me a break. Truly Pathetic.

Tim Smith said...

"Tim the afternoon meeting WAS open to the public. I attended but didn't pay particular attention to how WACDA advertised the event. It was interesting to see what the different groups were doing in their respective communities, it is unfortunate you didn't go."

You keep saying that the meeting was open to the public. Where did you get that information? The fact that you weren't denied entrance does not demonstrate that I would have been able to get in.

I did pay particular attention to how WACDA advertised the event, they didn't advertise it because they wanted to limit it to the private club members.

The timing of the gala event is suspicious. It was going on at precisely the time the council took action on chum salmon bycatch. Salmon bycatch in the BSAI pollock trawl fisheries is one of the most important fisheries issues for western Alaska residents and it is possible that some of the CDQ group board members might have taken their role as representatives of people in their villages seriously and spoken up. Doubtful, but within the realm of possibility. They weren't there because everyone was over at the Denai'na Center doing group think.

Tim Smith said...

"I see community ownership of quota as benefiting the resource. These people have a long-term interest in the health of the stocks. They can exercise better stewardship when it comes to fishery management and the actual fishing itself." Anonymous, April 10, 2012 3:33 PM

That's the holy mantra of quota share advocates but in this instance how could that work? Who are "These people"? The MSA says that the villages own the CDQ groups but note that it is the villages in the abstract. The residents of the villages are not CDQ corporation members or shareholders. We have no ownership interest in the CDQ nonprofit corporations or the quota. We have no codified legal rights in the CDQ program whatsoever.

The overwhelming majority of the people who make all of the decisions about the CDQs live in Anchorage, Juneau and Seattle. In theory, the CDQ corporation board of directors could exercise stewardship but in practice that doesn't happen very often.

The CDQ management will use the corporation's wealth, political influence and monopoly position to eradicate anyone who makes waves and board members who speak up soon find themselves off the board; so they don't speak up. Money is hard to come by in the bush and the directors vote themselves increasing amounts of cash as a reward for quisling.

The entire NSEDC board was at the April council meeting getting paid $600 per day and none of them provided any testimony on chum salmon bycatch even though Norton Sound chum salmon runs have been drastically reduced for 30 years. Norton Sound residents and organizations asked the council for a 30,000 chum bycatch hard cap but the NSEDC board of directors, who are supposed to be our representatives, didn't support us. They didn't support us on king salmon bycatch either. They refuse to talk to us about bycatch. They just silently collect their paychecks and do what is expected of them.

I can understand why the individual board members have to do what they do but a governance structure lacking a viable system of checks and balances is no way to manage a multi-million dollar social welfare corporation. The results are exactly what one would expect.

Anonymous said...

The CDQ groups have purchased another 20% of the Bering Sea crab quota with their non-profit status and profits from the CDQ quotas and discriminate against active fishermen from ever being able to ascend in the fisheries.

If the CDQ groups won't open the books, I suggest the 65 coastal communities, heck all AK communities request that the oversight committees in Congress hold hearings to crack these books. And we need Senator from another state (since our senators are to chicken $h!t) to request GAO reviews of the CDQs, IRS audit of the books for tax frauds, and have the IG's office of Commerce do a full investigation of the program. If the CDQ groups are so above board, then let the checks and balances begin.

Anonymous said...

Tim it's unfortunate that NSEDC and their board operates in such fashion, but I think it's unfair to carry the same attitude over to the rest of the program. Not all CDQ groups are the same.

The CDQ groups have purchased another 20%...

Great! Until 2006 their investments were to be strictly fishery-related. Seems they've been pretty successful there. They're not simply relying on their allocations for revenue and I think that's positive. People want to complain that its a welfare system but its not. They aren't just sitting around collecting... they're investing, developing and earning.

Anonymous said...

A couple of points. First, I'm really getting tired of your conspiracy theories Tim. It's fine with me if you dislike the program, and fine with me if you vent on and on. But your rantings have reached the point where they have no basis in realty.

Some 160 people from the six CDQ regions were present during the morning and afternoon session. That's hardly a secret meeting.

The event was scheduled several months in advance of the Council meeting. The agenda specifying when chum salmon would be up was not available. Friday was chosen to accommodate the schedules for the members of our Congressional delegation.

You have to be incredibly full of yourself Tim to think that the groups are so in fear of you that they would engage in all the diversionary and conspirital tactics you accuse them of simply to avoid having to make themselves available to you.

And to the blogger who inferred the books are hidden, etc. All six groups are subject to an independent annual audit. In addition, all six groups are required to provide each resident of their region with an annual report which contains a substantial amount of financial information. Some groups include the audit, some groups don't. But the numbers are there.

What isn't there, at least in most cases, are the proprietary financials of joint venture investments. Different groups treat those in different ways.

Tim Smith said...

I'm commenting on the one I know the best but people from the other regions tell me that their CDQ groups operate about the same, in almost total secrecy. In fact, I've never personally talked to anyone who was not in CDQ management that ever told me their group had any meaningful transparency or opportunities for resident participation in decision making.

So what is your basis for saying that some are different? Which ones?

I'm not one of the people complaining that they are a welfare program, I'd have to say it would be better if they were. At least that would be something. They are buying me $500 worth of electricity this year. Whoop de doo. What good is that?

I'm concerned about their investing and developing because we don't know any of the financial details about those investments and I don't see a nexus between those investments and the stated goals of the CDQ program. How does building a big bank account and acquiring assets that have book values that are questionable do anything to help the people living in poverty in the coastal villages obtain long term economic security?

Again, you say without anything to back it up, that they are earning. How do you know that? We don't get to see the books for our CDQ group, NSEDC; how can you tell me they are earning without knowing the financials? It appears to me that they are taking on a ridiculous amount of debt but I can't really know because everything is secret.

What I do know is that they have provided very, very few people in Norton Sound with careers in fisheries related industries from which they can earn enough to raise a family in their communities, buy a home, buy a truck, obtain a comfortable standard of living and retire some day with a reasonable income. Basically, achieve the American dream. Damned few.

All of the good jobs are in Anchorage in NSEDC administration. Did Anchorage really need a jobs program?

I'm sorry but if they were doing any of the things you say they are, one would think they would want to put the data out there for everyone to see. The fact that they keep everything secret invites suspicion. How is it that the community residents I talk to aren't able to see our neighbors who have gotten these jobs and businesses created by the CDQ program but you can? I'm not kidding, the emperor wears no clothes.

Tim Smith said...

"Some 160 people from the six CDQ regions were present during the morning and afternoon session. That's hardly a secret meeting." OK, how were the residents of the 65 CDQ communities informed about the anniversary gala? They weren't were they? Were we invited to attend? No we weren't, were we?

"The event was scheduled several months in advance of the Council meeting. The agenda specifying when chum salmon would be up was not available. Friday was chosen to accommodate the schedules for the members of our Congressional delegation." What an amazing coincidence.

"And to the blogger who inferred the books are hidden, etc. All six groups are subject to an independent annual audit." The NSEDC audit is kept secret.

"In addition, all six groups are required to provide each resident of their region with an annual report which contains a substantial amount of financial information. Some groups include the audit, some groups don't. But the numbers are there." Just what we need; some selected numbers in a slick report. What does that tell us about the financials? Nothing. Which groups make their audits publicly available?

"What isn't there, at least in most cases, are the proprietary financials of joint venture investments." What could possibly go wrong with hiding hundreds of millions of dollars of public money in privately owned joint ventures, eh?

Anonymous said...

Are CDQ's actually helping the communities? Or are they just lining the pockets of a select few. I think we all know the answer. They definitely are screwing up fisheries in the gulf with all them damn Fred Wahl's

Anonymous said...

It might not make economic sense to you. But what you think is overcapitalization by Wahl boats in the Gulf is precisely the game plan of the Milken Foundation to rationalize a fishery. They tell their investors that a fishery can't be rationalized without initial large capital expenditures in new vessels & technology. Therefore insuring a superior catch history that converts to IFQ's over the long term. Nice to have the capital to overcapitalize, become a "stakeholder" and cry out at a Council meeting that you're owed the resource.

Anonymous said...

Tim, why don't you run for NSEDC if you're that concerned?

And what more do you propose the groups do to create more jobs, eliminate poverty and increase the quality of life in the communities? You make it sound easy enough... I'm curious.

Anonymous said...

I propose that you release all financial information [proprietary or not] of the CDQ groups to the public therefore clarifying where are the money is coming from and where it's going.

Bering Sea [BS] crab rationalization is similar to CDQ's as they both hide behind the their financials of who makes what as being proprietary even thought both are really public resources that provide profits to private entities.

Keep trying to hide behind them apples,Don Young provided the legislation that hides CDQ's finances, while the NPFMC responsible for stopping the collection of the best information on the BS Crab program in violation of the National Standards. Crab rationalization quota share holders leasing data and their profits are not available, as well as the reduce compensation to the crewmen and some vessels. You can only hide it for so long and some day government agencies and the public need to see the bottom line.

Oh,a small group of individuals [CDQ's board members and crab quota shareholders] are making millions on the backs of starving BS villagers and stealing from the front pocket of BS crabbers (actual fishermen).

Tim Smith said...

Why don't I run for NSEDC? That sounds like a good idea.

"What more do you propose the groups do to create more jobs, eliminate poverty and increase the quality of life in the communities?"

Set achievable goals and if the people hired to achieve those goals can't figure out how to do it, hire people who can.

We need a more professional and effective governance structure. These corporations are too large and complex to be managed the way they are being managed.

For NSEDC we can immediately create jobs and economic development simply by moving the office to Nome. NSEDC's administrative budget is about $5 million annually. That would be a big infusion of cash into the Norton Sound economy that is badly needed and there is no good reason for NSEDC to be headquartered in Anchorage.

I never said it would be easy, if it was easy we wouldn't have needed the CDQ program in the first place.

Anonymous said...

"What could possibly go wrong with hiding hundreds of millions of dollars of public money in privately owned joint ventues, eh?"

Lets see, without checks and balances, lots of crooked things could happen: Fraud, Embezzlement, Bribery,Closed Door Meetings, Threats, Over-Inflated Compensation For Under Qualified Personnel, Fixed Elections, Character Defamation, Drug Abuse, Intimidation, Greed, Hoarding, and other Evil Doings in general.

That's probably what's going on without checks and balances for "hundreds of millions of dollars of public money in privately owned joint ventures,.."!

Anonymous said...

Those amusing concepts...fully explained to perfection.

Tim Smith said...

It will be two weeks since the infamous closed door 20th anniversary CDQ program celebration. It has been alleged that the gala event was open to the public but no one has come up with any evidence that the public was ever notified and informed that they were welcome. Most people are a little hesitant to try to force their way into an event that appears to be by invitation only.

If the anniversary celebration was honestly open to the public, I would think that it wouldn't be too hard to find an advertisement published in one of the newspapers circulated in the 65 CDQ eligible communities, a copy of a bulk mail mailout or some similar proof of a good faith effort to inform people. So why hasn't anybody done that yet? I'm starting to think that it is because the event was not advertised and the organizers didn't want people from western Alaska to attend. Is that possible?

Bobbyt said...

Keep up the good work Tim,good will alway's prevail over evil

Tim Smith said...

Thank you. I'm betting the farm that we will find a way to do the right thing with the CDQ program. 20 years of what we have had is enough.

Anonymous said...

I'm from Western Alaska and I didn't get an invitation to the 20year CDQ bash!

Victor Joe, NSEDC director from St. Michael was recognized. For what I asked? I don't see St. Mike hussling and bussling as a great fishing village after 20 years of his involvement in guiding the CDQ program to provide economic development for his village and region. I heard that he was recognized for being on the board the longest - since the start of the program.

With that much time and experience on the board, why isn't he the Chairman by now? Good question to ask him.

He is a model board member and I bet NSEDC would like to clone him. Show up for the meetings; don't make any waves; vote the way the "handlers" want, collect per diem check; go home and wait for the next meeting.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Tim for identifying yourself on this blog.

As Bobbyt said, "good will alway's prevail over evil"!

Anonymous said...

I too thank Tim for signing on because those blog watchers paid for by my Resource Monies can't say that my words are his words.

B T said...

The real bobbyt also says good will always prevail over evil.

But I do not know Tim Smith.

Now it's getting weird with you anonymous queers. Now you post someone elses name. Maybe bobbyt loves tim smith.

Fricking whackjobs with nothing but time on their hands


Anonymous said...

Word is that Henry Mitchell is the Godfather of CDQ's and he was left out of the awards.

Clem even stated that Mitchell was the person instrumental in making it all happen. Heard that Ted Stevens told Mitchell if he wrote the legal language and sheparded it into Congress that Ted would put pressure on the Secretary of Commerce to sign into law.

Anonymous said...

bobbyt, drunken homophobe.

Anonymous said...

This Act of Congress applies to the CDQ program monies:

TITLE VI -- Nondiscrimination in Federally Assisted Programs

SEC. 601.

"No person in the United States shall, on the ground of race, color or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance."

Tim Smith said...

It is certainly noteworthy that Henry Mitchell's involvement in the shaping of the CDQ program was not recognized at the closed-door 20th anniversary CDQ gala extravaganza.

Who did what 20 years ago is obscured by the way it was done. Like the anniversary celebration, the CDQ program was put together in secrecy behind closed doors. Ironically, as with the gala, the residents of the CDQ communities were relegated to need to know status back in the day and the people who set up the program figured we didn't need to know anything about it until it was too late to get in on the ground floor when the CDQ groups were being organized.

It's been downhill ever since with the people in control jealously guarding their growing hoard of cash and fighting tooth and nail to keep the rest of us out. There have been 4 strong-arm takeovers of NSEDC's administration during the 20 years of the CDQ program, and there are signs that another one is imminent. One thing the coup leaders all have in common is that they viciously fend off anyone who wants a place at the table and that kind of money buys a lot of high priced mercenary lawyers and carpetbagging consultants to help them do it.

Local politicians are so poorly informed about the purpose and goals of the CDQ program that they settle for a few dollars if handouts to keep them passive. Community residents are too poor to do anything effective and too busy fighting over crumbs to demand accountability, meaningful participation and transparency. Besides, nobody knows much of anything about the CDQ program in the 65 communities and the CDQ groups keep it that way.

Tim Smith said...

Some of us have been locked out for 20 years and the anniversary celebration was just another in a long list of insults and disrespectful treatment. We've had more than enough of being treated as the enemy by a gang of overpaid Anchorage residents who treat the CDQ program as their Cosa Nostra.

University of Rhode Island Professor and NPFMC Scientific Technical Committee member, Seth Macinko did a study on relationships between NSEDC and Norton Sound community residents.

He found that,

"The sense of closeness and communication with NSEDC ties in to another issue that is important to the future direction of NSEDC and that is the degree to which people in the communities feel a sense of ownership in NSEDC as opposed to viewing NSEDC as yet another distant, faceless source of funding. If NSEDC views the communities as essentially a constituent (at best) as opposed to the very essence of NSEDC (and thus the "owners" of NSEDC, then the question of a sense of ownership is not important. But it is a vitally important issue if the communities are NSEDC (see discussion below under "Future Vision"). We found little sense of ownership in NSEDC on the part of residents in the communities."

"The fact that in many communities there is not much "on the ground" evidence of NSEDC development effort appears to be a potential source of internal tension for NSEDC. This tension is likely to grow as NSEDC grows (as the pool of potential benefits to be distributed grows)."

"But NSEDC's in-region efforts are not only a source of internal tension. They are potentially the focal point of an external threat to the long-term viability of NSEDC and the CDQ program itself. Immediately after the completion of the interviews, the project PI was approached by a prominent representative of the Seattle-based factory-trawler fleet who inquired about the "findings" of the project. Specifically, were we finding visible evidence of the program bringing benefits to the communities? This query was followed by the statement that while the objectives of the CDQ program were noble, perhaps there was "another way" to go about trying to achieve those ends. This was a sobering exchange that highlighted the climate in which the issue of community benefits must be considered."

"It became obvious over the course of the project that there is a struggle going on over the vision of what NSEDC should be. In essence the struggle is between a vision of NSEDC as a modem multi-million dollar corporation competing in corporate America with a bit of community development tacked on versus a vision of an entity whose principal mission is to bring development into the region at the local community level. It is not our place to take a position on this struggle between competing visions. But it is clear that this fundamental question of identity/purpose has to be addressed before a coherent development strategy can be devised. We can simply report that we encountered near unanimous preference by people in the communities for the latter."

"Finally, we suggest that NSEDC try to embrace its critics a bit more. Actually fostering development in the region is an enormously challenging task and NSEDC needs all the ideas and energy it can possibly tap into. We did not meet a single individual that felt NSEDC was not a positive force in the region. People simply want NSEDC to do more and we think that some of NSEDC's critics can be more constructively engaged. Everyone that has a different idea about how to do things is not necessarily your enemy."

Planning for Community-Based Fishery Development -- An Independent Review -- Final Report
To Norton Sound Economic Development Corporation. Seth Macinko, Department of Marine Affairs,
University of Rhode Island.

Anonymous said...

Sad to say that the report by Mr. Seth Macinko was put away on a shelf never to be seen by the majority of the stakeholders. Keep them down, keep them dumb.

Anything negative by a "critic" is taken as an insult because these people are thinned skinned and/or hate driven. As Mr. Macinko pointed out, "Everyone that has a different idea about how to do things is not necessarily your enemy." The program itself has become an "enemy" of the people because it became part of an industry that is known to destroy salmon, an important resource for the livelihood of the Western Alaska poor people.

For rational, progressive minded people, "Critics help us take a look at ourselves." The real enemies are themselves because they just don't give a damn about anyone but themselves. Self-serving.

Anonymous said...

We're coming up to our busy season especially where salmon are concerned.

There is a lot of talk about "work" up here in the Norton Sound. The ones controlling the concept of "work" probably won't recognize "work" if it bit them in their fat arses accostumed to sitting around in a big shot chair demanding that the best "worker" for enhancing the 30 year salmon declines be excluded from participating because he "works" too hard. That's the truth even though the liars are saying otherwise.

Anonymous said...

Charlie Lean from NSEDC gathered his hand picked puppets today for a meeting of the "RAA recognized by ADF&G". This is probably his test of Manhood. I feel sorry for him.

Anonymous said...

It's unlawful for anyone to be "excluded from participating" in anything that has to do with managing the Nation's Natural Resources. That's exactly what happened today in Nome. NSEDC, Norton Sound's CDQ group is strong arming a monopoly over the regions discussions on salmon restoration and enhancement projects for claiming to be the "RAA approved by the ADF&G". I don't know if the State of Alaska really wants to go down this path. It's discriminating against those not on the Approved List.

Anonymous said...

Dangle a CDQ generated Per Diem check in the face of a Judas and that's what you get - a supposed leader without followers.

CDQ money
suppose to help
the people
the slaughter
in the Bering Sea
The tradition and culture
traded in for a
CDQ Per Diem Check
Lowlifes, Blowhards,
Scumbags, Traditors!
Your Name is on Paper
We know who you are!

Anonymous said...

I'm not on that NSEDC "Approved List" therefore I'm being Discriminated against. There are thousands of us with no voice up here in The Norton Sound.

I especially feel sorry for the White People who are not considered worthy of their rights to the Resources because their only spokesperson is being persecuted and labeled as a lier by people who lie on offical State of Alaska documents. It's there, facts not to be ignored. CDQ, monopoly, crooks, denying people their right to be involved. I'm a Eskimo and my rights are being violated!

Anonymous said...

The unorganized, recognized aquaculture association board reads like a 10 most wanted list of natural resource scoundrels of this region. They've lied, cheated, robbed,
extorted, abused and raped their way through public monies, & processes for decades. It's disingenious and utterly
gullible of the state bureaucracy to entrust the food security of Norton Sound to serial economic abusers & chronic failures. Indeed, a more definite recipe for calamity would be difficult to devise. This enterprise is preordained to end in failure because it's all smoke & mirrors for the trawl industry.Salmon ans the native culture dependent on the resource are bycatch.Our web of marine live and the human interaction with it are bycatch. It's an economic crime, and a violation of indigenous rights.

Tim Smith said...

Will everyone posting here who is not me be sure to let the readers know that you are not me? I'm getting blamed for stuff I didn't write which seems a trifle unfair. So in the future, if you would make it clear that you are not me, I would appreciate it.

Anonymous said...

maybe we should just identify ourselves as "manfromunk" or "nscrabber" instead eh TimmyBoy??

Tim Smith said...

Maybe, but if you do that, how would we know that you are not me?

BT said...

Let's not get off subject now. Are we not working on getting CDQ programs disbanded? Just like the gulf of Alaska rockfish lawsuit why can't we sue to get it stopped if we don't like the outcome?
We being honest hard working commercial fishermen!!!

Tim Smith said...

BT, I'm reasonably certain that you are not me so I will answer your questions about the CDQ program.

I am not working on "getting the CDQ programs disbanded". I am working to make them do what they were intended to do which is creating economic opportunities for people living in 65 Alaskan coastal communities in fisheries related industries. I don't think anyone anticipated in the early days that these tax exempt social welfare not-for-profit organizations were going to morph into competitive for-profits using their tax exempt capital to monopolize fisheries business activities and force everyone else out. There sure isn't anything in the enabling legislation that would suggest that was the intent of congress or the NPFMC.

"Why can't we sue to get it stopped if we don't like the outcome?" I wouldn't be at all surprised if you could sue and get the courts to order it changed. Stopping the abusive monopoly practices and unfair business competition would go a long way toward making it better for everyone. Making the CDQ group finances and governance accountable, nondiscriminatory and transparent would reduce the CBC-like activity that prevails today.

Take a look at the Sherman Antitrust Act. It could be the basis for a cause of action in federal court.

Stopping the CDQ program itself? It's very doubtful you could get a court to do that. It is nothing more than an allocation of publicly owned fish resources. There's nothing unusual or unlawful about that.

Anonymous said...

Trust, that's something I can relate to. Important part of survival for humans.

I'm an admirer of Theodore Roosevelt, US President, 1901-09. My favorite of his nicknames is "Trust-Buster". He loved nature, hunting, and fair play.

We're forgetting about all of the hard work he did to make economic opportunity fair to the general public. He also enacted laws to protect parts of our country for it's natural beauty with the idea that the wild land and water critters would always have a home protected by the country of the United States of America.

He was an avid hunter and a fisher as well. If I was him right now, I'd be saying "Killing off the ocean living species in the Bering with Federal Dollars is not right!"

That's the cdq program in a crab shell, a halibut skin, a salmon skin, a seal skin, just to stuff billions of dollars into a pollock skin.

Anonymous said...

That blogger at 8:57 on 8/14, pointed out a very important law, Title VI, Sec. 601, "No person in the United States......, or be subjected to discrimination under any PROGRAM or ACTIVITY receiving Federal financial assistance."

The six Western Alaska CDQs are federally funded without oversight from the Federal or State government.