To Subsistence 2
From: Larry Roberts:R10F02A
Postmark: Mar 24,94 3:37 PM Delivered: Mar 25,94 10:03 AM
Status: Previously read
Subject: Subsistence News‑3/25/94
*On March 18th, Federal District Court Judge H.Russel Holland heard arguments in the Katie John vs. U.S. lawsuit. The case centers on one major issue: should Federal subsistence law apply to navigable waters/fisheries?
*The State of Alaska argued that fishing on Alaska’s rivers and sea coast should remain under their control. The State sees it as a states‑rights issue.
*Until recently, the Federal government has agreed with the state. That all changed when the federal governments attorney argued in court that federal law should apply to at least some navigable waters in the state (i.e., National Park Preserves and Wildlife Refuges).
*Legal arguments focused on questions related to Congressional intent when they passed ANILCA in 1980. The state argues that Congress never meant to include navigable waters/fisheries; If it had, the law would have specified it. Opposing this view, the plaintiffs pointed to language in ANILCA dealing with hunting and fishing rights. The plaintiffs believe that if Congress had not intended the law to apply to navigable waters/fisheries, it wouldn’t have referred to fish in the law.
*Judge Holland did not set a date for a final ruling.