UPDATE: Stand for Salmon concedes defeat of Ballot Measure 1
Nov. 7, 6:00 a.m. Update:
With 432 of 441 precincts reporting, "No" votes are leading "Yes" votes with 145,997 to 83,479 as of 6:00 a.m. Wednesday morning.
In separate statements, Stand for Alaska heralded the defeat of Ballot Measure 1, while Stand for Salmon says it won't give up on pushing for wild salmon conservation efforts.
"Today, tens of thousands of Alaskans raised their voices to protect wild salmon and the rivers they call home," Stand for Salmon said in a statement Tuesday night. "While Ballot Measure 1 did not garner enough votes to pass, Alaskans across political and geographic boundaries united in support of stronger salmon habitat protections through the ballot initiative."
"Our diverse, statewide coalition was a major factor in the outcome of this campaign," wrote Stand for Alaska spokesperson Kati Cappozi. "Never before has such a broad coalition organized around a statewide ballot measure. More than 550 Alaska businesses across the state, Alaska Native corporations, labor unions, trade groups, and tens of thousands of Alaskans were part of the Stand for Alaska effort."
With 389 of 441 precincts reporting, Ballot Measure 1 is losing by more than 27 percent.
Early returns show that Ballot Measure 1, which aims to increase regulations regarding protecting salmon habitats, is facing an uphill battle, with preliminary results showing strong opposition.
As of 9:45 p.m. Tuesday, Yes on Ballot Measure 1 was trailing with 46,422 votes in favor and 77,241 opposed with 168 of 442 precincts reporting.
Ballot Measure 1 would be the first wholesale rewrite of Alaska's salmon habitat rules since statehood. Supporters say it's needed. Opponents say Alaska has done fine with existing rules.
The ballot measure proposed criminal penalties for some violations, and would allow the Fish and Game commissioner to issue “general permits” for some low-impact activities like a four-wheeler river crossing or a dock on a lake. A general permit could be issued for a region of the state and allow participants to engage in their activities without getting their own specific permit.
Supporters say the change to the law is needed. Opponents say Alaska has done fine with existing rules, and the proposed laws would kill jobs and Alaska resource development projects.