Harbor Community room 4-6:30pm.
1. Financial Update by Michael Harrington
CFSB is in good standing. P&L sheet shows that we brought in ~ $17K 2017. Past years typically bring in $6K. This extra fundraising was largely the effort of Executive Director Kim Selkoe organizing community donation events and getting the $7,700 South Bay Cable grant.
In 2018 we need to do even more fundraising to support the level of advocacy and outreach work we've been doing because the Plains All American grant money that supported Kim's position is done. We have a grant pending from the South Bay to support $11K in advocacy work and $7K for the Saturday Market. We are reaching out to Plains to solicit whatever amount more they would be willing to contribute. Accepting money from NGO's can also meet our needs and is only done with detailed, careful legal contracts that prohibit their involvement in our organization. Having a larger annual fundraiser- like a Fishermen's Festival at Oak Park could bring in a lot of money, but takes a lot of event planning. Paul Teall and Ben Hyman offered to find helpers to do this.
2. The Groundfish Quota Bank Formation
The assets we are receiving have a value of $220K. TNC has no role or say or access to info after giving it to us. We can sell it after 2 years if we choose. We will have 2 workshops in the Spring to get a plan together for how to manage the quota in a way that helps our port. There are templates from the 5 other CA quota banks to draw from in creating quota leasing and management guidelines. Having CFSB hold quota and being part of the network of quota banks has strong value for amplifying our voice on management issues.
36 Line issue: It is very difficult to predict how it would hurt or help our fishing grounds to remove the line. We've been told that because it has no biological basis, it will eventually be taken out. Suggestions to ask Gerry Richter and folks from Morro Bay to come down to explain the issues and help us form an opinion on removal of the line. March 11th Council agenda will discuss the groundfish trawl fishery - gear switching provision and others. Would be good to engage on that.
3. Domoic Acid & Disaster funding
Upcoming Fisheries Forum on March 8th in Sacramento, Rm 2040 of the assembly building. This is a good place to advocate for the Rock Crab fishery. We need a showing of rock crab fishermen to voice concern on disaster allocation and domoic acid testing policy.
Ricky Guttierez and Chris Voss will also be attending a meeting in Oakland March 22-23 put on by the Ocean Science Trust focused on domoic acid. Ricky mentioned that a slew of grant money was given out by OST for science projects on domoic acid and he's been unable to find out how and when fishermen are being engaged in guiding the science. Need to figure out how to get decisionmakers and grant recipients to engage. Note- be careful they don't use us to just 'check a box' on engaging fishermen with no real response.
Collecting Disaster money: the $200 million has to be spread over all disasters, including Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, etc. State of CA is now tasked with coming up with a payment plan to get money allocated to its affected fisheries. Usually use a calculation of what % of last year’s landings was missing from the catch during the disaster to portion the funds. We don’t want them to just go by total landings – eg. rock crab in so cal. is small compared to Dungie, but we were worse affected. We will be lucky to see $1 to 5 million set aside for rock crab.
4. Lobster Commission
Gearing up to do a mailing through Food and Ag to inform all permit holders of the upcoming referendum that would establish the marketing commission. Dues are taken out of your check from the buyer. The starting point was set to be $0.10 per pound. This is a very secure, low-overhead funding stream - can't be touched by gov't.
-how to deal with bad actor buyers not turning over check. Fly by night buyers? Answer: If we collect from the major buyers, can deal with a little money slipping through the cracks
-Based on Urchin Commission, expect ~$8K will be taken as overhead by Food and Ag. Also need to pay ~$4K for annual auditing of books.
-What about CLTFA? Answer: We keep the CLTFA going in a merged fashion. CLTFA can lobby and give donations politically.
-You can point to marketing resources and crisis management done by other marketing commissions
-Stress the much needed advocacy function over marketing function of the commission.
5. Board Elections
Board is 7 members representing diverse fisheries. The board elects the executive committee. Term is 2 years.
All present board members were interested in staying on the board, but willing to step down if someone else wants their spot. McCorkle brought up the idea of expanding the size of the board, but still keeping quorum size low, to get more involvement. Also can start using alternates to get more involvement. Board needs to change the bylaws to allow that.
Michael Harrington made a motion to change bylaws to allow board of directors to chose their own alternate if they wish to have one. Seconded by Burke. 6 votes unanimous in favor.
Names submitted for the board: Chris Voss (lobster), Michael Harrington (urchin), Bernard Friedman (aquaculture), John Colgate (Sablefish), Mike McCorkle (trawl & gillnet), Gary Burke (drift gillnet), Steve Escobar (rock crab).
Names submitted as alternates: Paul Teall (rock crab) alternate for Steve Escobar, Ben Hyman (Sablefish, groundfish) alternate for John Colgate, Miles (urchin) alternate for Michael Harrington.
Ricky Guttierez made a motion to vote in the whole lists above of board and alternate nominations. Seconded by Harry Liquornik. Unanimous vote in favor by all CFSB members in the room (~15).
6. Saturday Fishermen’s Market
Review of Cable grant spending: approx. $4500 on equipment and fillet booth, $3000 on marketing. Chamber of Commerce was instrumental in amplifying our marketing and supporting our cause to get fillet booth established.
Aside: Chamber has continued to offer ongoing support of CFSB despite no formal relationship. CFSB Board is interested in joining the Chamber of Commerce. If they join at a high level, individual fishing businesses can sign up for a discounted cost. Board will vote on this at next board meeting.
Saturday Market has its own board of directors and application process for vendors to join. We will have a dedicated meeting for the Saturday Market open to all to discuss current challenges moving forward. Issues include:
- Liability issues of running a fish cutting service. Would like to see well trained fish cutters with Kevlar gloves to reduce risk of accidents. Tap fish market cutters to volunteer. CFSB needs to look into upping insurance coverage for the volunteers in the booth and perhaps use a signed waiver form. Definitely stop allowing public from using the booth
- Cost and time of managing the booth. Need to problem solve this and find a financial plan that is sustainable. Have the vendors use it as needed and maintain it?
- Getting more product and diversifying product.
Mark Becker offered to sell his wild sockeye frozen sides from his catch in Alaska. He is a shareholder of Silver Bay co-op in Alaska. He bought back his processed sockeye and want to do direct marketing. If he is allowed to sell at the Saturday Market, he would only sell after all wild salmon done, after Nov. closure through April. During rockfish closure will be good option. Packages are 2 lb sides, $15 for each package. Ricky: this was done in the past and didn’t hurt sales for other vendors. Brian: need to figure out where to draw the line for other non-local catch. Kim: we will have you fill out an application and the Fishermen’s Market board will discuss and vote on trying this out.
7. Other miscellaneous issues and new ideas:
State Bill AB2369 – Authored by enviro NGO Wild Coast. It would up the penalties for commercial fishing violations inside marine protected areas. Would also allow permanent loss of commercial license with second offense. Mike Conroy gathering input to work on revising the contents of the bill. For instance: Recreational guys need equal treatment in this; need to define a time limit on time between two offenses that could result in permanent loss; need to define whether someone borrowing your boat who makes a violation would impact the boat owner’s license. What about possibility of lobster gear getting pushed by storms into reserve boundaries? Noah Oppenheimer will host a meeting at the next PCFFA meeting, the day before the Fisheries Forum, March 7th in Sacramento.
Ventura Shellfish Enterprise – Mike McCorkle is following this process closely and suggests that CFSB put in a letter of opposition against their Option 8 siting of the lease in federal waters. Location is in prime trawling and gillnetting grounds. Folks like Gary Burke are affected. Location is terrible for currents and weather. Letter should go to VSE, Cassidy, NMFS, Chris Oliver, Barry Tom. Let’s get specific names of fishermen affected. Don’t like the idea that VSE is trying to wall off Ventura port’s piece of the ocean.
Santa Barbara Local Coastal Plan – There’s a March 1 meeting to provide input. Need to send a letter voice concern of loss of designated coastal land for maritime use, and ask for an agenda slot. One way to fund a campaign to deal with our future space needs is to get a grant to update our 2014 Economic Impact Report. SB Foundation is not making grants until their internal strategic planning is done. Maybe in 6 months? Community Environmental Council has met with Kim recently to voice strong support for CFSB and its projects to increase and protect local seafood harvest, provide public access to local seafood, and preserve fishing infrastructure in our port. We have a good shot at getting new funding from SB Foundation with their help. Morro Bay, Jeremiah O’Brien, updates their Economic Impact Report every year. Cost is high. Kim could get the template from Lisa Wise Consulting for minimal cost and do the update ourselves more affordably.
8. New collaborative research project with TNC.
This is a short term project that just came about. The goal is to provide images for a software program TNC is developing that can digitally size catch from photos. Has been used in the North Coast Abalone fishery (called Ab Ruler) and is providing crucial support for improving use of data in that fishery management. Having high quality fisheries-dependent data on size distribution of catch informs metrics like spawning potential ratio. This is a metric that has a history in various other fisheries of providing a strong case to avoid unnecessary closure recommendations. For instance, in North Coast abalone, it suggests that biological surveys of density are giving a flawed picture of the stock health. Eventually, we see the Department being able to use digital sizing to get higher quality data than they use now, so they can be less conservative/risk-adverse.
The project agreement is for Chris Voss and Kim Selkoe to use a Go Pro camera to take photos of lobster that will help TNC develop artificial intelligence software that can get accurate carapace lengths of lobster from the images. This provides us $13K for CFSB coffers. The grant agreement has very strict guidelines to simply be a transaction of providing them images and written feedback on what works and doesn’t work well to use the Go Pro to take images on the boat and at the dock. Chris Voss assured concerned individuals that any misstep by TNC will be the end of all collaboration with them indefinitely, and that he takes full responsibility for ensuring that there is no foreseeable detriment to our involvement with them. The folks involved from TNC will be asked to give a presentation to the CFSB Board on the project scope, value and possible implications.
End of Minutes
Written by Kim Selkoe.