This Week's Fish News

January 13, 2023

Ayoooo it's tax time! If you make at least 2/3 of your money fishing, don't forget to pay your estimated tax for 2022 by January 17. If you do not pay your estimated tax by January 17, you must file your return and pay all tax due by March 1 to avoid a penalty. Otherwise, you have until April 18 to file your actual income tax return. And, for those of you with deckhands, 1099s must be postmarked by January 31. (Obligatory note that we aren't tax professionals and you should absolutely consult with yours!)

Alaska's upcoming legislative session starts January 17. A few of the prefiled bills pertain to fishing: HB 18 would enable fishermen to self-impose taxes to offset the cost of new fisheries based on their fishery management needs; HB 19 would exempt USCG documented commercial fishing vessels with current CFEC vessel licenses from the requirement to register with the DMV; and HB 20 would restrict Board of Fish and Board of Game members from voting on issues where they have a conflict of interest. 

Alaska's largest fishermen-owned processor, Silver Bay Seafoods, bought Orca Bay Foods, based in Seattle. That's a big move! 

The NOAA Fisheries Finance Program has loan funds available for 2023. Eligible projects for purchase or refinanace include fishing vessels, IFQs, LLPs, and shoreside processing facilities. NOAA loans offer terms up to 25 years, fixed interest rates 2% over U.S. Treasury Rates (NOAA rates are all currently under 6%), 80% financing, no prepayment penalties, and loan approvals that are good for five years.

The Coastal Villages Region Fund, an Alaska Native CDQ group, bought a Seattle marina and office complex, for nearly $20 million. 

A 3-day RSW Operator Class will be offered in Anchorage February 6-9. There will be two more classes, one in Bremerton, WA, in March and another in Dillingham, AK, in May. The class next month is full, but you can get on a waitlist. There's still space in the Dillingham course. BBRSDA will reimburse members up to 50% of the course fee. 

The NPFMC salmon bycatch committee will meet January 25 to discuss the State of Alaska Bycatch Task Force recommendations, and regulatory and non-regulatory management measures for consideration including caps and closures considered in 2012. A cap on chum salmon trawl bycatch is on the table. 

This week's Alaska Fisheries Report: The Unalaska cod strike, and the lawsuit threatening to shut down Southeast chinook trolling.

As a reminder, vendor registration is open for ComFish, held March 16-18 in Kodiak, Alaska.