The Highliner

Commercial fishing is a bedrock industry in Alaska, and has been for more than a century. Every year scores of fishermen net millions of migrating salmon, challenge the icy Bering Sea to trap king crabs, lay miles and miles of baited hooks for halibut, and scoop up enough pollock for a zillion fish sticks. And when fishermen aren't out fishing, they're usually talking about fishing. That's what this blog by Wesley Loy has been all about for the two years he has written it.

Last set - 4/10/2009 7:36 pm

Seeking a PFD fishermen will actually wear - 4/10/2009 7:28 pm

Advice for mariculture: Grow West - 4/10/2009 7:26 pm

Anti-Pebble pitch to Anglo American - 4/10/2009 7:19 pm

Safety issues send two boats back to Hoonah - 4/9/2009 5:35 pm

Palin’s board pick draws fire - 4/2/2009 10:46 am

Cook Inlet fisherman named to board - 4/1/2009 4:51 pm

Wrangell deal back on? - 3/31/2009 9:56 am

How much will you get?

Caretakers of the $383 million in punitive damages Exxon Mobil Corp. recently paid for the 1989 oil spill are laying the groundwork to distribute a big chunk of the money by year’s end.

They can do it assuming a federal judge rejects an effort by Terry Bertoson, owner of Sea Hawk Seafoods Inc., to re-jigger the distribution plan in an effort to grab a bigger share of the money (The Highliner, Oct. 25).

Federal Judge H. Russel Holland has indicated he intends to rule on the Sea Hawk challenge on or about Nov. 12.

Lawyers representing thousands of commercial fishermen and other plaintiffs say they want to hand out some $150 million before the end of the year.

They’ve chosen 13 of the 51 claim categories to receive the first payments. The 13 include Prince William Sound, Cook Inlet, Kodiak and Chignik salmon fishermen.

Now, here’s the fun part. The lawyers have produced lists of names with the amount each person will receive. Attorney fees will be deducted from these amounts.

I looked over these lists and saw that quite a few guys can expect checks for more than $100,000. I even saw one payment of $400,000-plus.

Here’s the lists, which were filed last Friday in U.S. District Court in Anchorage:

List 1 – Chignik seine, Cook Inlet drift

List 2 – Cook Inlet drift, seine, setnet

List 3 – Cook Inlet setnet, Kodiak beach seine

List 4 – Kodiak beach seine, Kodiak seine

List 5 – Kodiak seine, Kodiak setnet

List 6 – Kodiak setnet, Native

List 7 – Native

List 8 – Native, Native opt-out

List 9 – Native opt-out, PWS 1989 Fund

List 10 – PWS 1989 Fund, Prince William Sound drift

List 11 – Prince William Sound drift, seine

List 12 – Prince William Sound seine, setnet

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