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Murkowski Questions Commerce Secretary’s Focus on Fisheries

Senator Concerned Fisheries Cuts’  Negative Impact on Alaska

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Lisa Murkowski received an assurance from Commerce Secretary John Bryson that cost-cutting in the national fisheries will not result in a cut to the surveys and stock assessments in the Bering Sea or the Gulf of Alaska. 

She shared with him the harmful ripple effect of such a potential move: cuts would reduce the quality of the data, leading to greater uncertainty in the science, triggering lower catch limits and costing Alaska millions.

Senator Murkowski opened her questioning by informing Secretary Bryson she was ‘disappointed’ that in his single-spaced, twelve page statement, only one paragraph dealt with fish.

Commerce Secretary Bryson also added his voice to that of President Obama, Interior Secretary Salazar and Senator Murkowski that a proposal to move the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) from the Commerce Department to the Interior Department made sense from a business efficiency perspective and “could enhance productivity.”

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