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Begich, Sullivan; Dunbar, Young Face Off Over Alaska Fisheries

Lucy Towers
24 September 2014, at 1:00am

US - Its FISH ON! for Alaskas Congressional candidates when they meet for the popular fisheries debate on Wednesday evening, October 1 in Kodiak.

Since 1990 Kodiak has hosted debates for candidates running for Alaska governor and US Congress. They are limited to a single topic: Alaska’s seafood industry.

The event has always attracted 100 per cent participation by candidates and it’s no different this election year. Incumbent US Senator Mark Begich and his opponent Dan Sullivan will face off in the first hour of the debate, followed in a second hour by forty-two year veteran of the US House of Representatives, Don Young, and Democratic newcomer Forrest Dunbar of Cordova.

The big hook for the Kodiak fisheries debate is that the event is broadcast live to more than 330 Alaska communities via host station KMXT and the Alaska Public Radio Network.

Nearly 85 per cent of Alaska’s fishery catches come from waters that are managed by the federal government. The seafood industry is Alaska’s largest employer, and it provides 60 per cent of our nation’s wild-caught seafood.

“That is why it is so important that Alaska’s representatives in Washington, DC understand and are directly engaged in fishery issues. The debate lets candidates share their knowledge and ideas about this vital industry to a statewide audience,” said Trevor Brown, director of the Kodiak Chamber of Commerce, which sponsors the event.

The Congressional Fisheries Debate is a free event set for Wednesday, October 1 from 7-9 p.m. at the Kodiak High School auditorium. It also will be streamed live on the internet by KMXT (www.kmxt.org).

Producers from NHK Japan Broadcasting Corporation also will be filming the fisheries debate.
Sponsors for the debate include: Alaska Groundfish Data Bank , Alaska Bering Sea Crabbers, Trident Seafoods, Kodiak Island Borough, City of Kodiak, Horizon Lines, Samson Tug & Barge, Alaskan Leader Fisheries, Groundfish Forum and Alaskan Quota & Permits in Petersburg.