Alternative Funding Mechanisms for the Great Lakes Fishery Commission: Private Trust Fund vs. Annual Appropriations
Lawrence, Theodore; Pelkey, Melissa
AbstractAbstract The Great Lakes Fishery Commission (commission) is a bi-national organization established by the United States and Canada through the 1955 Convention on Great Lakes Fisheries. The commission has the responsibility to coordinate fisheries research, control sea lampreys, and facilitate implementation of A Joint Strategic Plan for Management of Great Lakes Fisheries. Historical analysis of the commission’s work demonstrates that sea lamprey mitigation is a long-term problem for the Great Lakes fishery and control will require a steady source of funding indefinitely. Currently, the commission pursues funding through the annual appropriations process of the United States Congress. This form of funding can be unstable from year to year due to changing political and economic climates, and is thus, unreliable when addressing environmental issues in the long term. To address potential funding insufficiencies, the commission has established a private trust fund in recognition that funding, at times, could be inadequate to fully administer its control and research programs. This paper assesses the commission’s private trust fund as a secure long-term mechanism of funding suitable for addressing the threat of financial insufficiency; examines the commission’s infrastructure, past working history, and present status to determine its ability to function, partially or in whole, under a private trust fund mechanism; and, assesses the options the commission can adopt to capitalize this trust fund, and the political and social barriers in doing so.
Great Lakes Fishery Trust Fund Invasive Species Sea Lamprey
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