Fishery permit buyback proposal the wrong way to go
Sen. Peter Micciche’s proposed buyback bill is not only wrong headed, at $260,000 for a permit, it would in effect place the cost of millions on the backs of Alaskan taxpayers, at astonishingly artificially inflated high prices, well above present market trends of $80,000 to $200,000 depending upon the production records of a particular site.
Let’s recall that the original cost of these permits was in the area of $60.00 per permit when limited entry created a privileged class.
The cost of any buyback program would be born by those who stand to benefit the most financially, i.e. the remaining setnetters as well as the drift fleet, whose quotas and income would increase dramatically as a result.
The Bering Sea crab fleet, as well as many Canadians in the fishery in buyback programs paid the cost of these permits by allowing the state take so much per pound of fish landed to pay off the debt. To force the Alaska taxpayers, statewide, to enrich other fishermen in the inlet’s salmon fishery smacks of fascism, violates taxation without representation statutes, and breaches Alaska’s Eighth Amendment to the Constitution.
John A. Anderson