Lt. Gov rejects setnet ban petition

Citing a 1996 Alaska Supreme Court decision Lieutenant Governor Mead Treadwell today rejected an initiative seeking to ban setnetting in certain areas of the state.

Treadwell decided on a course of action upon the advice of the State's Department of Law, which suggested that salmon are legal assets of the state that cannot be appropriated by initiative, according to a media release from the state. 

The newly formed Alaska Fisheries Conservation Alliance, which submitted the proposed initiative, called the decision "puzzling" in a media release. 

“I want to thank the Lt. Governor, Alaska Division of Elections and the Alaska Department of Law for doing their due diligence, however I struggle to see the logic or the legality of this decision," said AFCA executive director Clark Penney according to the release. 

The organization is considering a lawsuit. 

The Alaska Salmon Alliance, an organization representing commercial processors and fishermen called the decision "elating" in a media release.

“We are elated by Lieutenant Governor Treadwell’s decision to not certify this job-killing measure,” said Arni Thomson, Executive Director of the Alaska Salmon Alliance, according to the media release. “Though it was highly unlikely to ever pass, the Set Netter Ban would have instantly destroyed the jobs of more than 500 Alaska families who set net to make a living. We are happy to see it dead on arrival.”

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