Declaration Will Help Struggling Fishermen and Coastal Communities
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 27, 2017
Juneau – Representative Louise Stutes (R-Kodiak) applauds last week’s decision by U.S. Department of Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker to accept the State of Alaska’s request for a disaster declaration for the pink salmon fisheries in the Gulf of Alaska.
“Poor pink salmon returns last year had a devastating impact on coastal communities in the Gulf of Alaska and I am delighted that we are one step closer to providing economic relief to my constituents,” said Rep. Stutes.
When asked about the decision, Alaska Governor Bill Walker thanked “all the legislators who tirelessly advocated for this declaration, especially Representative Louise Stutes for making the first request.”
Low pink salmon returns in the Gulf of Alaska resulted in a sizable reduction in harvest numbers last year. The approved disaster declaration provides Congress with the framework to appropriate disaster relief funding for economic assistance to affected communities. The relief funding is contingent on an appropriation by Congress and a 25 percent matching share from the State of Alaska.
“I will continue to work with our congressional delegation and Governor Walker to ensure that the necessary steps are taken to help hard-working fishermen weather this economic storm,” said Rep. Stutes.
For more information, please contact Reid Harris in Rep. Stutes’ office at (907) 465-4087.