July 26, 2014
We are saddened by the Alaska Superior Court’s decision to allow the dishonest and un-Alaskan initiative effort to ban setnets in urban areas of Alaska to move forward. Regardless of what the backers of the so named “Setnet Initiative” are calling themselves today, this is just one more attempt by Bob Penney and his lobbying organization, the Kenai River Sportfishing Association, to put a century-old fishery in Cook Inlet, consisting of hardworking Alaskan families, out of business. The initiative has nothing to do with conservation, it has everything to do with greed and a sense of entitlement by a small group of people.
If Alaska allows management of its resources at the ballot box, our entire resource-based economy is at risk. If one group of selfish people are able to push a resource grabbing initiative through, then you must ask yourself this: Who will be next? What part of Alaska’s economy will be eliminated next by those who put their wants above what’s good for the rest of our communities?
It is unfortunate that the court has allowed this misguided initiative to move forward. Although the final legal status of the initiative is uncertain, we believe Alaskans will support this historical 135 year old fishery, the 700 plus family owned small businesses and the thousands of related processing jobs it represents in Cook Inlet.
The Kenai Peninsula Fishermen’s Association