Consider ramifications of sportfishing industry

Posted: Monday, May 01, 2006

The recent flurry of activity by the Kenai River Sportsfishing Association makes me uncomfortable. It appears to be an attempt to further politicize Kenai River Management and polarize various “stake holders.” Yes, the “Tides are Changing” in Cook Inlet (voices of the Peninsula — Ricky Gease). The report (or rather I should say the interpretation presented) is an attempt to effect resource allocation. Like any hired mouthpiece, Ricky Gease can and does spin statistics to whatever end he desires.

The Kenai River Sportsfishing Association is the same group that wants to increase the allowed horse power of boats on the Kenai River. Maybe they should consider getting smaller boats, hauling less weight, and/or a different hull design. Undoubtedly the economic gain of sportsfishing is great. But at what expense? And who gains? And what about those plane loads of sports caught fish FedEx (and UPS and USPS) fly out of Kenai all summer long? The people who consume those fish are the same people not buying commercially caught fish (I am a commercial fisher).

Benjamin Jackinsky


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