Sport Fishing Institute Update
Posted on October 26th 2012, by Sport Fishing Institute of BC
Here is an update from Sport Fishing Institute of BC. SFI is a nonprofit society. Contributors and members are made up of a wide range of committed stakeholders including: fishing lodges, resorts, certified tidal angling guides, hotels, charter operators, manufacturers, distributors, tackle shops, dealers, boat marine manufacturers, regional airlines, individual anglers and key insurance industry organizations. Its common goals are to ensure sustainability of our natural resources and that angling opportunities are maintained and promoted.
Big Splash and Policy Conference December 6th - Register Now!
We'd like to remind you that the annual industry Policy conference and Big Splash Gala Fundraiser is approaching. The event will be held at the River Rock Resort and Casino in Richmond on December 6th and we hope to have a strong turnout from those looking to learn more about the key issues facing the recreational fishery in BC - visit www.sportfishing.bc.ca for more information or to register.
Halibut Allocation Court Case
As we move into the fall, we are getting deeper into the fisheries policy processes that have traditionally dominated our time in the off-season. Of particular note, the SFI and the BC Wildlife Federation are working together and have been granted responder status in a court case launched by a group of commercial halibut quota holders who oppose DFOs decision to increase the allocation to the recreational sector from 12% to 15%.
The case is interesting. On the surface it is a dispute between commercial quota holders who believe that the original 12% allocation was set in stone versus DFO which maintains that under the Fisheries Act, allocation can be amended at any time. In practice, it will allow a judge to consider some of the broader issues surrounding public ownership of the fisheries resource, the meaning of quota, especially when held by non-harvesting "slipper skippers", and the extent to which fish can become private property before they are caught. As joint respondents, the SFI and BCWF are asking the court to consider a number of questions including how it is that government can implement a halibut leasing model that transfers fish between quota holders who don't actually fish to lodge owners or charter boat operators who don't actually fish.
While this is an expensive hearing for both of our organizations it is an extremely worthwhile exercise to be a part of and be able to provide comment and suggestion for. Both organizations would be appreciative of support for participation in the proceedings. We will keep you posted regarding the outcome although it should be noted that rulings on cases like these can take quite a while.
Open House Events
We'd also like to note that on November 13th at 6:30 PM, the SFI will be holding an open house at the Sheraton Four Points Inn in Langford. It will be the first in a series of open houses that we'll be holding this fall and we'd like to encourage local anglers to come out and share their views on the recreational fishery with us. On November 14th, we'll be holding an open house in Campbell River at the Campbell River Community Centre and then again in Port Hardy on November 18th and last, in this series, on November 20th at the Barclay Hotel in Port Alberni.