Legislature(1995 - 1996)
03/17/1995 01:23 PM FSH
* first hearing in first committee of referral
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
= bill was previously heard/scheduled
CHAIRMAN ALAN AUSTERMAN called the meeting to order at 1:23 p.m. at the Golden Anchor Restaurant in Kodiak. He noted, for the record, Representatives Davis and Elton were in attendance and that a quorum was present. He explained that the purpose of the meeting was just to take testimony on bills restructuring the Board of Fisheries (BOF) and no action would be taken on any of them. Number 039 REPRESENTATIVE GARY DAVIS asked if the committee had received much input on this issue of restructuring the BOF? CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN indicated that he had received calls opposing SB 49 and its companion legislation, HB 149, and stated the importance of the BOF. He said, "I just don't want to rush any bill through that restructures that board without having time to look at it and make sure that we're doing the proper thing." REPRESENTATIVE DAVIS said he appreciated that the BOF conversation was taking place. Number 095 NICK SZABO introduced himself as a former BOF member of seven years, from 1975 to 1982 and said, "I was chairman of the board from the five years from 1977, until 1982. This was during Jay Hammond's Administration. In fact, the first year, it was a Board of Fish and Game. It was a combined board and it was (in) the legislative session of 1975, the legislature chose to split it into the Board of Fisheries and the Board of Game." He testified, "I think that we're dealing with a two-fold problem here and, I think the basic structure of the board is a good one, having a citizen- type board and keeping it to a small enough number, such as seven, is a good concept, but over the years the legislature has been constantly besieged with proposals to either expand the membership, or to designate seats, certain types of seats and so forth. I noticed that some of the bills speak to those types of things. The problem I see is that we need to change the perception of the role of board members. Too often I think, both the public, and possibly the legislature because they're responding to their constituents, think of the board as a mini-legislature where you have people who represent either geographic areas, or they represent a particular user group, or a particular gear type, and it's self-defeating to try to accommodate that perception. There's just no way, with a seven member board, you can accommodate every geographic area and every user group. Even among sports fishermen, you have the so called elite fly fishermen and then you have the sports fishermen who just want to catch a fish anyway they can and take it home and eat it. On the board I saw there were conflicts even among that so you can't satisfy every user group. I think that we've got to change the idea that board members are not supposed to be there representing in the same way that a legislature represents a particular faction or a particular constituency because, if they do that, then it's at the expense of competing constituencies. The other part of the problem is the very liberal interpretation the courts have recently made with the conflict of interest law. They've said that almost anybody with any interest gets disqualified from voting so now you have: someone puts their representative up there but then he can't vote and he can't actually represent them because he's being disqualified because of this ultra-liberal interpretation of the conflict of interest law. Therein you have a real catch 22 problem. I think you need to sort of refocus the public's perception of the role of the board members. I think that it is important that the board members have experience in a lot of different fisheries both commercial and sport and subsistence, commercial in different areas of the state. I don't think it really matters whether they hold an entry permit or not as long as you get good quality people on there. That's the key to the thing. Of course that's not your responsibility, it's the Governor's responsibility to choose the people and of course you have the confirmation ability to reject them if you don't think they're qualified. But if the Governor would spend more time trying to get good quality people, that are number one, smart enough. As the chairman stated, the Board of Fishery is probably one of the most, if not the most important board in the whole state. So you need people, and the issues that they deal with are very complex, and most of the issues the board deals with are allocation issues. If it were strictly only biological issues than you really wouldn't need a board the professional ADF&G department staff could deal with those. The role of the board is to act as a buffer between the public and the professional Fish and Game staff." Number 185 MR. SZABO continued, "You need people with experience and the reason that you need people with a lot of experience in the fisheries is because, unlike in the court system, when people come to testify before the board, they don't take an oath that they're telling the truth and the whole truth. They can come up and tell the board anything they want and there's no way to actually verify the validity of that information unless board members personally have a good understanding of what the real world is all about. Therefore, I think it's important that you have people with a wide range of experience, people with a lot of intelligence and the ability and the willingness to spend tremendous amount of time, because it's not just the board meetings that people have to attend. They're expected to attend local advisory committee meetings. They're expected to interrelate with department staff. It's much like your own job with the legislature. The public is continually calling you up on the phone and writing you letters and stopping you on the street, in the grocery stores and so forth, letting you have the benefit of their specialized advise. It requires a great amount of time. I think there is a value though, I mean, theoretically, you could have everybody live in say, Homer, and it really wouldn't make a difference as long as these people had experience. But there is a value in having a geographic representation because then, number one, you give more people more direct access to at least one board member. So that they can personally contact that person and relay their ideas and concerns to them." MR. SZABO continued, "The other reason for having geographic representation is similar to the reason that the legislature has committees that specialize in different issues or laws that deal with different issues. Your Health and Social Services, and your Natural Resources, and here we have a Special Committee on Fisheries. The issues are so complex that no one board member, similar to the legislature, can be an expert on every detail of every facet of every issue. So it's useful to have board members that are geographically distributed so that they cannot represent that area, but they can specialize on the problems of that area," and said, "and really become the board's expert, so to speak, for that area. Not that they represent that area in some allocation conflict. There should be clear instructions to the board members, they're not representing an area, they're just specializing in an area and that is their specialized area of knowledge. If somehow you could convey that through legislation. It's easy to say all this but then it's another matter to write this into law. Then I think we would have a better product." Number 255 MR. SZABO added, "The other aspect of the problem which I mentioned is this ultra-liberal interpretation by the courts of the Conflict of interest law. When I was appointed to the board, there was a mass resignation from the board because of the conflict of interest law and Governor Hammond, actually it worked out well for him cause he had a whole clean slate because the Board of Fish and Game at the time resigned because of the legislature enactment of the conflict of interest law. But our instructions at that time, from the Department of Law were that, well you're supposed to act in the public interest and even though you are part of a class, say you're a fisherman in Bristol Bay, or a fisherman in Kodiak, as long as the effect of the regulation doesn't benefit you exclusively, it may benefit the class that you're in, as long as you can show that you considered all the evidence and you voted for what you thought was in the best interest of the public, then you ought to be able to vote whether you had a vested interest in that fishery or not. The board is so small and it requires four votes to move anything, no matter how many votes are actually present that if you disqualify two or three people, you tip the whole balance of the board and you can have one or two people controlling the outcome because you've already disqualified two or three already. So I would hope that possibly, the legislature would consider not exempting the board from the conflict of interest law but making it similar to how the legislature operates. You're not exercising a vote for yourself, your exercising a vote for the people of Alaska. And you may have a vested interest in the outcome, but you should go ahead and state what your interests are and then vote because you can't have a situation where you disqualify everybody that has some kind of interest in the outcome. I understand that they're looking at an even more liberal interpretation. Now they have a representative from the Department of Law at board meetings that sort of has this sort of authority to say who can vote and who can't. I think that's wrong. It would be almost the same as if the members of the legislature that served on the Special Committee on Fisheries couldn't vote when these (fisheries related) bills came to the floor because they had more knowledge and more expertise and they were involved in these bills and, therefore, they shouldn't vote on them. That's almost what you're talking about by disqualifying people with the most knowledge about a situation. Because they are now saying that not only can you not vote, you cannot discuss the issue, you cannot debate the issue, so all of this expertise that you're supposed to have is completely lost to the board. So that's my view of what the problem is. Speaking specifically to some of the bills here, with all due respect to our chairman, I guess I'm not that excited about splitting the Board of Fisheries into a marine fisheries and a freshwater fisheries. Particularly with salmon where you have to have total management of the species throughout it's range. I think you would have an unworkable situation whether it's the Kenai River or the Bristol Bay systems or whatever where you had one board regulating the harvest in the freshwater part of it and another board regulating the harvest in the saltwater part of it. I don't honestly see how that's a workable situation. I know there have been proposals in the past to have a finfish board and shellfish board. There have been proposals to have a regional board but you still have the same problem because there's a lot of overlapping jurisdictional problems when you start splitting these things up." Number 321 MR. SZABO concluded, "If you could change the perception and possibly mandate some standards for the members that the Governor had to follow. I think it also would be useful if there was a requirement that board members went through some type of orientation. I know I didn't when I was there and I don't know whether they do now. I don't think they do. But similar to what the freshman legislators go through. Where they really understand what the law provides, what the conflict of interest law provides, what their role is, and so they don't get off on the wrong foot as far as thinking they're supposed to be representing a group when they're really not supposed to be and that type of thing. I think that might be useful. But otherwise I guess I would propose leaving the basic structure the way it is." Number 333 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN thanked Mr. Szabo for his testimony and said, "HB 254, splitting the board: That whole concept behind that was to hopefully address, at some point in time, the workload that the board is under. By splitting it we thought, possibility, of splitting that workload as well," and regarding HB 165 said, "I think you made comments that regionalization of the board does have some merit as long as the best people end up getting in the positions." MR. SZABO responded, "I was just looking at this HB 165, that doesn't set up regional boards that just requires that the board membership come from various regions, right? I'm not hung up one this geographic representation other than like, I say, it's useful to have a distribution so that the public can have more access. If they're all concentrated in one area then it's the access the public has to the individual board members. So I'm not sure I'm in favor of specifying that there has to be a geographic representation or not. I'm just saying it's a useful thing to have. I think the most important thing is to have good quality people." He said, "Other than having something as to the best qualified, best educated people. I think you can say though that they have to have experience and maybe you can mandate that they have to have experience in more than one area of the state, or more than two areas of the state, or more than one fishery of the state but I think that's critical that you have to have people with a broad base of experience. We had the problem when I was on the board with some of the members on the board who had very limited experience outside of their own particular area. They just didn't understand what was going on in the rest of the state. So that's why I think that it's so imperative that you have people with a broad range of experience." Number 402 MR. SZABO continued, "If I can shift over to this thing about time that you were speaking of, the time thing was something that we grappled with continuously when I was on the board. During the time I was on the board was the enactment of the Magnuson Fisheries Act, commonly known as the 200 mile law, the enactment of the Alaska National Interest Lands Act, which provided for the federal subsistence oversight that we're grappling with now, in addition to the board meetings we were constantly going. I was traveling to Washington D.C. on fisheries stuff with National Marine Fisheries Service. We were dealing with the Department of the Interior constantly trying to draft the state's position on the National Interest Lands Act. It was just an inordinate amount of time and we grappled with going on these three year cycles and trying to limit public testimony. Every time you turned around though, the public said well you can't limit public access, we need more advisory committees. I don't know how much money we put into upgrading the advisory committees. When I was on there it went from 20 advisory committees to over 60 advisory committees. Governor Hammond, that was his big thing. We had to upgrade the advisory committee system so I think we tripled the number of advisory committees and the public they complain about how long the board meetings are and how long they have to sit there and wait for their turn but when it becomes their turn, every individual wants the board to spend, to study in great detail, every facet of every issue that pertains to them. It's just an unwinable situation and I don't know what the solution is. I know there's people that are opposed to the concept of having a professional board and I guess I'm not real keen on that idea either. I know we have members of the Limited Entry Commission here and I have great respect for all of what they've done, but I would hate to see the board would turn into something like that where you had three people concentrated in Juneau that have political appointed jobs that they felt they had to play the whole political game in order to maintain their jobs and so forth. But yet, how can you expect a person, with the amount of time that it takes, how can you expect a person to make a living outside of all this and still make a fair living for their family, unless they're semi-retired or independently wealthy or whatever, the average person cannot spend the amount of time that's demanded by the public without some fair compensation. So I think it might be of value to have maybe a quasi professional board where at least you got compensated, say maybe even to the same range as a department head, or something like that, for the amount of time that you spend at board meetings and so forth. Because right now you're burning people out. I was on there for seven years and I think that's one of the longest times except for Gordon Jensen from Southeastern who was on there for 20. You're just burning people out after every two years and the whole arguments about term limits aside, I think it is useful to have some historical perspective and some continuity so that you're not continually replowing the same ground all the time. So I think it is beneficial to have people stay for more than one term but you can't expect people to do that if they can't make a living outside of the large amount of time that they spend on the board." Number 448 REPRESENTATIVE KIM ELTON said, "I think we're getting to the point where a person who wants to serve on the board is maybe too crazy to put on the board. It's an incredible demand on your time. A person tends to, over time, make more enemies than friends," and, "I share your concern that we're not only taking from a rather small pool of people who can take the time to do it, but you're also narrowing that pool because of the demands that are placed on it and the terrible nature of the job. And the scary part is that we're now getting proposals that do lead to a three person professional board." He emphasized, "The public's perception being that a region needs to represented, or a user group needs to be represented, but I guess from my relative short time in the legislature, even more scary about what the public perception (indisc.) is what the legislative perception of what the Board of Fisheries should be and I don't know how you get around the problem of changing the public's perception. I think there needs to be some attention paid on the part of everybody involved in the industry, commercial side and the sport side, on what the legislative perception (is) because the legislative perception I think is becoming more and more destructive to the board process. Because there is a tremendous political drive toward regionalization, towards making sure a user group is represented on the board. It's not just the Legislative Branch, it's also the Executive Branch. I don't know how you get around that other than keeping after us who are involved in the confirmation process or keeping after the Governor." Number 478 REPRESENTATIVE DAVIS said, "The biggest concern I have I think that you indicated is where the board might become similar to the legislature where you're almost campaigned for the board or someone campaigns for you where then a particular person is brought forward by a group and they've campaigned for him, they've promoted him, they've lobbied for his appointment. Not only in the Governor's Office but in the legislature and that person representing that group is put on that board after all this campaigning, promoting and lobbying. So who's he going to protect on that board? He's supposed to be looking at the overall picture like you indicate." He also stated, "It appears that that approach has been expanding itself, promoting itself more in the last two or three cycles of appointments than previously. That's the big concern I have and if that approach continues then the whole value of a citizen board is going to be mute. It won't be there." Number 505 MARK KANDIANIS, F/V PROVIDER, Kodiak Fish Company, testified saying, "I have resided in Kodiak, Alaska since 1980. I have been registered with the state of Alaska for scallop fishing for fifteen years and worked under Alaska's fish and game regulations for the same period. In 1990, I attended a fisheries meeting in Kodiak chaired by Senator Ted Stevens on the pending vessel moratorium for vessels fishing in the federal waters off Alaska. I found out at this meeting that this vessel moratorium would not apply to the scallop fishery. There had never been a federal management plan written for this species, though this fishery has taken place off Alaska in federal waters since the late 60s. In 1991, I started talking to Alaska Department of Fish and Game, the North Pacific Management Council and the National Marine Fisheries Service about developing a Fisheries Management plan for scallops in the EEZ (exclusive economic zone) waters off Alaska. It has been a long process with little reward. A moratorium control date was set for July 1, 1993. Still after this date, new arrivals from the collapsed overcapitalized east coast fishery entered the scallop fishery here. The control date was moved ahead after some questionable lobbying and the new arrivals' efforts to invalidate the original control date in the federal register in Washington D.C. All of these new entrants arrived with two boats each. Some of the earlier ones came with unusually large crews. The results were quick depletion of some localized stocks and intense scrutiny of potential bycatch problems. Since the arrival of these new boats, we have had regulation upon regulation imposed on us as well more than doubling of the fleet size. We started the process of developing a management plan with the intent of trying to maintain a viable fishery and we have come out this process the biggest losers period. Our fishing time and income has been cut in less than half. We are now outnumbered by the newly arrived east coast scallop boats by more than two to one. All of the long time participants in the Alaska scallop fishery are now suffering severe financial distress without exception. This appears to be the reward for years of hard work trying to maintain a once viable fishery." Number 638 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN asked if there is scalloping within the three mile limit. MR. KANDIANIS indicated approximately 25 percent of the scallop fishery in the last five or six years took place within three miles. He added, "And after this episode with `Mr. Big,' it looks like the state may lose its management outside of three miles out to the EEZ, unless there's a change in the Magnuson Act or the council somehow can delegate authority back to the state. It's a real dilemma. The scallop fishery is just the tip of the iceberg. It also will apply to other fisheries in the Gulf here and possibly the Bering Sea, the crab fisheries. A little known fishery like ling cod could be affected. It's quite a dilemma. And this outfit from the east coast is taking it to the test and proven himself right so far." CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN asked if the North Pacific Management Council is currently in the process of planning for fisheries in this area. MR. KANDIANIS said, "They're probably going to come up with some kind of plan but all these new management regimes that we've worked hard to work with the state to developed may have to be completely redone again under the federal guidelines. And I know that the state does not want to lose management of the fishery. It's a pretty tough deal and, again, the same applies to species such a crab in the Gulf and possibly up in the Bering Sea. I don't know if anybody would be foolish enough to test it up in the Bering Sea but it's still out there." Number 658 REPRESENTATIVE DAVIS said in reference to HJR 25, "It sounds like a similar situation that Representative Grussendorf brought to us a couple of weeks ago." He added, "The Governor, the other day, indicated he's working with NMFS to reinstitute state control in state waters. To what degree, what stage they're at, and what the opportunities are to any favorable outcome in the negotiations, it's still yet to be seen." MR. KANDIANIS said, "We're being held hostage by the whole process and we've been the backbone of the fishery for the last 15 years and we're losing every day. The only scenario that we see, the outcome for us to come out of this, is that IFQ problem which gives the historical participants the most favorable quota share and the longer we delay, these guys who just showed up from the east coast, after we had already come up and developed the plan, they come in on the tail end of the deal, with a couple of boats each and the longer we delay, or if it takes five years, all that past history that we had is lost and gone. These guys (indisc.) boats from South Carolina and Virginia, they walk away with the fishery. The residents of the state would lose." MR. KANDIANIS then commented about the BOF saying, "We see this board process: It's become an inshore sport board and they're making policies for offshore fisheries which is Magnuson Act. You may not even have that option anymore. There's a lot of offshore, large boat fisheries that the new inshore sport board is making legal things on and they don't have a clue as to what's going on. We'd like to maybe see a split board or an interjurisdictional board to handle those kinds of problems. I wouldn't want to sit on a board and discuss salmon issues. I've always pretty much fished offshore fisheries and I wouldn't want to be in that position," and, "Every three years we get five minutes to testify for something that our whole life depends on." TAPE 95-17, SIDE B Number 000 REPRESENTATIVE ELTON asked, "What's your perception of the advisory groups in the pre-board process, do you use those?" MR. KANDIANIS replied, "For the most part, the advisory boards seem to be comprised mostly of salmon, herring and game people. We have an advisory meeting here and we get finally something worked out and it might be something that's actually happening down at Sand Point or Dutch Harbor and we never know when those are going to take place." REPRESENTATIVE ELTON asked, "So you're saying that for your portion of the industry anyway, the subgroups, the pre-board process is not all that beneficial?" Number 045 MR. KANDIANIS clarified, "It really does have it's place for the inshore fisheries," and, "And they do seem to do well with those. It's always controversial but they do seem to work things out. And we'd like to have the same opportunities. Only with our own offshore board." JEFF PETERSON testified, "I grew up commercial fishing with my father. He doesn't fish anymore. He lost his permit to the I.R.S. and when I was growing up he insisted that I have a background in (something) other than commercial fishing to fall back on. So I went into the Marine Corps for four years and got a military police training and became a village public safety officer. What I've seen in the last week when we had the BOF meeting is, and that was the first time I ever attended a meeting and participated, what I see lacking on the fish board, it's not lacking but I see a potential for it, is the original, the status quo of subsistence, commercial and sport. It's not being followed in this state. There's only a few native people attending the meeting to testify and here you're discussing who can catch what fish and here we're talking about large numbers of fish caught by draggers and the bottom line is you've got to maintain your resource and not worry about making a living for next year and this year, you've got to be worrying about keeping the fishery alive forever instead of having the user group move from east coast, the Gulf of Mexico, to the west coast, now up in Alaska, now they're going to go to Russia because they're going to fish out the area. People want a board that live right here, right next to the water year 'round. You can't have somebody coming in from a fishery that died off on the east coast sitting on the board, just because he claimed residency in Alaska. I believe you have to have somebody that lives in Alaska year 'round, grew up here, lives here, intends to live here. Those are the people you want on the board because we want to see this ocean stay as it is right now." Number 112 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN agreed that the first priority in all decision making should be the fish resource. REPRESENTATIVE DAVIS commented that many Alaska fishery decisions are made by the federal government in Washington, D.C. Number 156 AL BURCH, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, Alaska Draggers Association, testified, "First off, the BOF and the North Pacific Council need to be complimented on the excellent job that they have both done protecting the fisheries over the years. We still have fish. The east coast doesn't," and "I became involved when the board was the Board of Fish and Game. They met maybe a week to ten days. They took care of all the fish and game issue during that short period of time. The state has grown, the fisheries have evolved. We have a BOF, we have a Board of Game, and they're both overloaded. Absolutely overloaded with the work that they have to do. I've read these bills. I don't agree with a professional board at all. I don't know if we need it by geographical areas or if we need it by gear type fisheries interest, but something needs to be done. Things aren't going to get easier. We have a tremendous whitefish fisheries here. We had the state involved for a short time. We had a budget for a bottom fish person here in Kodiak. The person went to American Samoa, the money went to the King Crab fisheries. They didn't refill the position. That was the last time the state was really involved in the bottom fish fisheries. We have one person in Southeast now that takes care of the black cod inside, a bottom fish biologist down there. Very, very minimal involvement. If the state does get involved in whitefish management then we would have to have a separate board, a board of interjurisdictional fishers. As it was stated before, we need people on that board that understand our fisheries. The makeup of the board now is salmon. They hear some very, very controversial issues. We just went through one here in Kodiak and Kodiak won this time, proposition 333. Next year we might not. It comes up again in November. But those people are (indisc.), they sat down, they listened to the fishermen, they understood the issues and they made what I felt was a fair decision. That same board in the five minutes that I would have before that board, I could not even begin to educate those people to the issues of whitefish. So something does have to be done with the board. I don't see the answers here. I wrote a letter to Rod Swope when Cooper was in, about a five page letter stating what I thought would be an answer, I copied that letter, ran it through the copy machine and sent it to Tony. Before the transition team met that letter got into (indisc.) I still believe that that's the way to go, we should have a third board." Number 237 CHAIRMAN AUSTERMAN confirmed that Mr. Burch supported HB 254 which creates a separate board for groundfish. MR. BURCH also stated that he would like to see the Alaska Marine Safety Education Association's (AMSEA) budget supported. He said, "We feel that AMSEA's doing an excellent job." Number 282 CHRIS BURNS, AREA K SEINERS, testified that the Legislative Research Agency had found no precedent in any state for a professional board overseeing natural resource issues. He said, "I think that a professional board would be purely experimental and since it would be experimental, you wouldn't know the outcome and we have a lot to lose in this state as we are basically natural resource based. I think it's a pretty far out idea, myself." He then described the recent decision on the Kodiak versus Cook Inlet issue and added, "What the BOF found at this last meeting here in Kodiak (is) they didn't have enough scientific information like scale-pattern analysis and genetic code sampling, things like that they know for sure what's going on. They were doing things like weighted averages and stuff off of fish tickets to determine what was going on and they found that the science was really lacking there. But all this other science is fairly costly and with the ADF&G budget being basically down to forty million dollars and even threatened to go below that, there isn't enough money to get good science. So what we're going to end up with is basically just a bunch of fighting going on with no way to prove a point unless you just rake out the money and hire your own biologist and then come in with a biased biologist on one side or the other. So obviously, the best thing to do would be to get more money into the Fish and Game budget, not to go to any other area except some kind of genetic studies or scale pattern studies in salmon. That would save a lot of allocation issues." He added, "If we had scale pattern analysis of the fish that we catch I think that we would come out good with the Anchorage people and they would find, because of timing of the fish we catch and everything doesn't match up to the rivers that are lacking in Anchorage. But what we would find is that we might have a problem with the Canadian's hatchery fish. So we might be getting into jumping out of the frying pan into the fire." MR. BURNS said, "The Canadians are playing real hard ball with us. If Alaska was Iceland or Russia or England, they have battleships out fighting over little pieces of rock they have 200 miles around. Alaska is just playing like `Oh yea, it's okay we'll pamper you guys between Ketchikan and Seattle, that little coast of Canadian water there.' The Canadians aren't letting our boats pass safely. And you know the only reason that we don't control halibut in state waters is because of the IPHC treaty we have with Canada. If a guy really wanted to play hard ball, he'd dissolve the treaty." Number 402 REPRESENTATIVE ELTON agreed, "Because of the Fish and Game budget, I think that the Board is relying an awful lot more on 'seat of the pants' kind of stuff. Anecdotal information. I think that is a very very dangerous situation. And as you say, sometimes good knowledge can hurt but at least it's good knowledge." MR. BURNS said any increments in the ADF&G budget should go towards "people doing the scientific work." REPRESENTATIVE DAVIS asked if there were presently increments included in the budget for a scale pattern studies. REPRESENTATIVE ELTON indicated that there was no such increment and cuts would be coming for Bering Sea crab research. Number 450 MR. PETERSON voiced concern about the chum salmon shortage in the Yukon River.