Fishing group endorses Murkowski

Posted: Friday, May 17, 2002

JUNEAU (AP) -- United Fishermen of Alaska has endorsed U.S. Sen. Murkowski's candidacy for governor.

The statewide fishing organization announced the endorsement Thursday in an appearance with Murkowski in the Dimond Court Plaza across the street from the Capitol.

Murkowski, a Republican, is expected to face Democrat Lt. Gov. Fran Ulmer in November.

Sue Aspelund of UFA said Murkowski's understanding of the need for balance between resource development and habitat protection helped tipped the scales in his favor.

''We spend a lot of time trying to protect access to our fisheries from extreme environmentalists,'' said Aspelund, who heads a Cordova area fishermen's organization.

The group also agreed with Murkowski's position on subsistence.

UFA supports a constitutional amendment granting a rural preference for subsistence users, combined with technical amendments to the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act, said David Bedford, who heads UFA's subsistence committee.

United Fishermen of Alaska represents 29 fishing organizations.

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