Hodgson Responds to Open Letter
Office of Hon Pete Hodgson
MP for Dunedin North
Minister of Energy
Minister of Forestry
Minister for Small Business
Associate Minister for Economic Development
Associate Minister for lndustry
& Regional Development
Minister of Fisheries
Minister of Research, Science & Technology
Minister for Crown Research Institutes
Associate Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade
M Minister Responsible for Timberlands
West Coast Ltd
20 JUN 2002
PO Box 37951
Dear Mr Macindoe
RECREATIONAL FISHERIES REFORM
Thanks for your letter dated 13 May 2002 (received 30 May) regarding
recreational fisheries reform.
First, let me assure you that I am committed to the ongoing discussion
and debate on options for the reform of recreational fisheries management.
With regard to the Action Plan developed by the Ministry of Fisheries
earlier this year, officials inform me that the occasional papers
are close to being finalised and will be externally reviewed prior
to being circulated to interested parties within the next few weeks.
I am hopeful that those papers will provide a useful background
context from which to discuss the options for moving forward.
Not surprisingly, consultation on the "Soundings" document
initiated a huge response from the New Zealand public - and not
least from option4 which has clearly laid out its bottom lines for
recreational fisheries management. As you note in your letter, officials
have been asked to develop advice by February 2003 on a revised
option for further public consultation.
I strongly refute your suggestion that I, or my Ministry consider
listening to the public to be unnecessary - the process outlined
above is a direct consequence of public submissions received in
the first round of consultation. I expect any revised option for
recreational fisheries reform to reflect issues and concerns raised
either in submissions on "Soundings" or in subsequent
discussions with recreational fishers that may occur in the interim.
As you point out, it is election year and many issues take on an
increased political aspect in election year. I personally welcome
ongoing public discussions on the recreational fisheries issues,
and will be making time to attend the annual conference of the Recreational
Fishing Council in New Plymouth on 12 July. As with all debates
on fisheries management, the focus must be on the resource and the
development of policies and frameworks that ensure that resource
is managed sustainably for the continued enjoyment of future generations
of New Zealanders - be they recreational fishers, commercial fishers
or customary fishers.
I await your letter polling political parties fisheries spokes people
Minister of Fisheries