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Paterson Inlet extension request 2003

Minister of Fisheries
Parliament Buildings

Email: phodgson@ministers.govt.nz

Cc: option4

Thursday October 23, 2003

Paterson Inlet Marine Reserve

Dear Minister

I understand you have asked for feedback on the Paterson Inlet marine reserve application in order to assist your decision on concurrence for this application. Your Ministry have held two meetings to discuss the issue with the public and have advised we have until October 28, 2003 to respond. I would like to ask for an extension of time to respond for another 60 days, till December 27, 2003.

The meetings conducted by your Ministry were held in Invercargill (September 25th) and Stewart Island (September 24th). By all accounts these meetings were very well run and constructive. It would be appropriate if more meetings were scheduled and advertised in Christchurch , Dunedin , Queenstown and possibly Greymouth. Many fishers and hunters visit Stewart Island and are unaware of the existence of the marine reserve application.

Over the past week option4 have had a number of enquiries from people who use the area for recreational purposes and have not been consulted. These people are both from within the Southland area and beyond. Safety is a major concern for most of these people when using this area of interest.

I understand you support the concept of good process in your decision-making and this issue raises some questions which I would like answers for. Please take the time to consider and offer answers to the following -

  1. Is this process of asking for feedback for concurrence on a marine reserve application an ongoing issue or just being applied to this particular application?
  2. Do you or your Ministry have a formal process in place to deal with concurrence decisions?
  3. If so, can we have a copy of the guidelines/ process relating to marine reserve applications?
  4. Is it correct that a mataitai application has been filed with MFish for an area in Paterson Inlet?
  5. Attendees at the Invercargill meeting were advised that only land owners adjoining the area within the mataitai application can submit to that application process, is this correct?
  6. If so, where are these rules explained in the Fisheries Act or any other Act?



You will be well aware of option4's involvement to date regards marine reserves as indicated during our meeting in Wellington on October 1st. In the absence of a review period for a marine reserve we consider marine reserves to affect all New Zealanders and as such they have a right to be aware and make comment on any application. Rose Grindley of MFish specifically stated in the Invercargill meeting that group submissions would be counted as a single submission.

  • Is this MFish policy?
  • Since when has this been MFish policy and where is the policy explained in MFish documents?
  • Would you please provide a definition of group submission and single submission


Maori Fisheries Management Tools

Customary Maori fisheries management tools such as mataitai and taiapure are not generally well understood by the public. To achieve positive results from any marine protection measure there has to be public support and buy in. The opportunity exists to explore the possibility of using one of these measures in lieu of marine reserves. It would be good to see Maori working with the public of New Zealand to give effect to these tools. Maybe this is an opportunity to take the time to examine the risks and benefits of all protection measures available, not just a marine reserve in Paterson Inlet.


Current Protection

Considering the success of the Fisheries Management Plan within the Paterson Inlet it is questionable if any further protection measures are required. I have been advised that the Paterson Inlet Management Plan is often used as an example of how well this scheme can work with support of the public. What evidence exists that supports the need for more restrictions to the public use of the area?



The consultation you and your Ministry have instigated in relation to this marine reserve application is a positive move however the consultation needs to be more thorough and widespread. An extension of 60 days would help in this regard. The need for stricter protection measures needs to be fully examined and consideration given to other measures. Exploration accompanied by an education campaign to facilitate the implementation of existing customary Maori fisheries management tools would be appropriate and timely.

Time is of the essence. I would appreciate your earliest possible response and acknowledgment of this letter considering the current submission deadline of October 28 th .


Yours faithfully

Trish Rea

option4 spokesperson

PO Box 37951





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