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Sponsored by: Hunt <br /> by Council direction <br /> CITY OF SEWARD,ALASKA <br /> RESOLUTION 2017-018 <br /> A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SEWARD, <br /> ALASKA, IN SUPPORT OF CHANGES TO TIMING AND SITING OF <br /> U.S. NAVY OPERATION NORTHERN EDGE TRAINING EXERCISES IN <br /> THE GULF OF ALASKA <br /> WHEREAS, the City of Seward has a long history of supporting all branches of the <br /> military, including previous Northern Edge exercises, deeply appreciates the dedication and <br /> service of all officers and enlisted personnel in protecting our nation, and understands that a fully <br /> trained force is necessary to fulfill that mission;and <br /> WHEREAS, Seward has enjoyed the community and economic benefits of a long <br /> relationship with the military, including thousands of off-duty personnel utilizing the Army's <br /> Morale, Welfare and Recreation facilities here annually, and <br /> WHEREAS, previous similar exercises have taken place during periods of locally low <br /> or absent populations of migratory fish, marine mammal and bird species that the Seward <br /> economy depends on or have been conducted away from critical areas identified in the previous <br /> and current Environmental Impact Statements, and have been a positive experience for the <br /> community while causing little known negative environmental impact; and <br /> WHEREAS, Northern Edge 2017 is scheduled for May 2017, within an area that <br /> includes different habitat areas of particular concern, and lacks a National Marine Fisheries <br /> Service(NMFS)Record of Decision or Letter of Authorization;and <br /> WHEREAS, commercial, guided sport and personal use fishing, and wildlife viewing <br /> tours are cornerstones of the local economy, and both occur in May, in the Gulf of Alaska, and <br /> within the northwestern area of the Temporary Marine Activities Area; and <br /> WHEREAS, the combination of timing, location, and lack of NMFS findings intended to <br /> address these types of issues raise concerns for the City,particularly regarding possible impacts <br /> to fish and marine mammal populations critical to the local economy; and <br /> WHEREAS, the Navy has demonstrated the ability to fulfill its training and testing <br /> obligations while also extending additional protections to important marine species as evidenced <br /> by its agreement to limit training and testing activities in Southern California and Hawaii during <br /> the previous permit period (2011-2016), and has more recently proven responsive in the 2017- <br /> 2021 period by agreeing to not conduct activities at the Portlock Bank near Kodiak.; and <br /> WHEREAS,marine mammal species protected by the Hawaiian and Southern California <br /> agreements have populations that routinely migrate seasonally to and from Alaska to feed, <br /> mainly from May to September; and <br />