for AK Salmon Fishermen
August 21, 2003
The petition, due August 31st to be eligible for FY 2003 funds, is the first step in the process. If the petition is certified, the second step would be for individual fishermen to apply for funds as part of the certified group. If the group is certified, Alaska salmon fishermen who can verify an overall net fishing income decline in 2002 from 2001 may be eligible, and would have three months from the date of acceptance to apply for FY 2003 assistance funds. Payments would be made beginning in January 2004.
The opportunity to petition has been granted by the USDA in response to the work of Senator Lisa Murkowski, and a concerted effort by UFA, United Salmon Association, individual Alaska fishermen and Alaska fishing organizations in a letter campaign in July. Of the 76 letters received commenting on the proposed rule, 47 respondents supported extending TAA coverage to fishermen of Alaska wild salmon, who face stiff competition from foreign farm-raised salmon.
"This opportunity for Alaska Fishermen to even be considered in USDA Trade Assistance through the Farm Bill is a milestone for Alaska fishermen that have suffered from increased imports similarly to America's farmers. This is one small step in the long road that UFA and United Salmon Association have been working on for a long time." Said UFA Marketing Committee Chairman and United Salmon Association president Bruce Schactler.
Source of News Release: