Letter of Apology to Hokianga Accord
From Keith Ingram
5 April 2006
Tena Koe Sonny
Please accept and table my apologies at the Hui. I had every intention on joining you all as the RFC representative and to give you all an update on where we are at with this year’s regulation review.
- The RFC shares similar views on the allocation of shared fisheries project as Paul Barnes and option4 team and we have clearly given Robin our views on this issue.
- Of the fish plans and the view for the future, we have concerns and while we have entered discussions without prejudice, we have clearly stated that there are a number of unfinished business items on the agenda that must be addressed for the public to move forward on this issue.
- Proportional allocation and fish plans. Paul’s paper clearly gives an excellent view of the problems and risks to the recreational share. These concerns must be taken into account and addressed by the Ministry before we can move forward on this. I have serious reservations that the Ministry will continue to try and lock us into the leftover’s of a proportional system already depleted by commercial over fishing and wasteful practices. The rights for all New Zealanders to go down to the sea and catch seafood to feed their families must remain paramount. Be they Maori, Pakeha or new New Zealanders.
- The 1989 Labour Government recreational policy and Moyle’s promise is now regarded by many as the public’s treaty and this should be honoured in legislation.
- We remain in full support of the KLC although we have our own concerns with industry’s direction in the case and the ever-increasing costs. I cannot acknowledge the work of the KLC team enough or the personal commitment of Scott to this cause on behalf of all of us.
- I personally acknowledge and support the principles of the Hokianga Accord and must give acknowledgement to Ngapuhi and your leadership in ensuring that both Maori and Pakeha who fish as recreational fishers to feed their families remain united as we move forward for the benefit of all New Zealanders.
Finally a quick note on the regulation review 06
We have met with the Ministry and have short-listed a number of items of concern we wish looked at.
The Ministry has stated that they only are able to look at 3 items this year. This being the case I raised two items from the last round of which the Minister was seeking more information on. These I regard as out side of this years allocation.
- Coromandel scallop bag limit increase. The Ministry has been asked to provide the Minister with the available science data the Minister is seeking and that target dive surveys be done in the commercial exclusion areas as a verifier of the commercial data taken outside. We would suggest that given it is the same fishery this data will be similar.
- Cray loops or lassoes. We have in association with the Ministry commissioned a small research project on the catch and mortality effects of the use of cray loops for taking rock lobster versus the frantic hand grab.
Review items. Unfortunately we find ourselves defending traditional practices from suspect Ministry or legal interpretations.
- Define take? When is a fish or shellfish taken? If it is tagged or released so that some one else may take it later. Is it still defined as taken and must be counted as part of the daily bag.
- a) Review the Minimum legal size for: Blue cod and standardise at 30cm nationally.
b) Investigate a new MLS for gurnard.
c) Introduce a new MLS for trumpeter.
- Change the recreational scallop season nationally or northern only from; 15 July to 14 Feb by six weeks to; 1st September to 31st March.
There are two other items we have asked the Ministry to initiate and these are.
To start the process for a “National set net review” This is in response to the many concerns and variations of rules associated with set nets and the practices associated with them.
To start the discussion process with a view to remove the MLS off all fish caught by the bulk fishing methods of trawl, danish seine and set nets. The rationale behind this is to ensure all fish taken commercially is landed and counted against quota or by-catch. It will also remove the ability to high grade or dump. The current system of having a MLS on species taken by these methods of fishing is seen to legitimise high grading or dumping and thus encourages wasteful fishing practices.
Once again Sonny, please extend the very best to all who have taken the time to gather for this important hui.
NZ Recreational Fishing Council