Halibut allocation concerns a hot topic at Port Edward council

The District of Port Edward heard concerns from the sport fishing sector regarding halibut allocation, with the total allowable catch being used up as early as June based on the 88/12 split with the commercial sector, but how to address the issue was a point of contention among some councillors.

The District of Port Edward heard concerns from the sport fishing sector regarding halibut allocation, with the total allowable catch being used up as early as June based on the 88/12 split with the commercial sector, but how to address the issue was a point of contention among some councillors.

The BC Fishing Coalition is asking Ottawa to revisit the 88 per cent allocated to the commercial sector back in 1990 in light of the declining allowable annual catch being experienced. While it may have been in the tens of millions of fish when it was created, the sport sector now only gets 12 per cent of less than 10-million pounds, a number that could drop further.

But councillor Knut Bjorndal says getting additional allotment won’t be and can’t be as easy as having the government change the numbers from the 435 license holders that were given the 88 per cent even if it is unused and leased to someone else.

“You can’t just say ‘the quota you bought is being reduced and we’re not going to compensate you for it’. We can’t just confiscate people’s quotas,” he said, noting that the quotas are just as much people’s livelihoods as they would be for the sport sector and that lodges and charters are businesses just like the commercial sector.

“The increased quota you’re looking for has to come from the commercial sector, but you have to buy it back.”

That being said, Bjorndal acknowledged the flaw in having someone given an allocation for as long as they live.

“If you’re a logger and you retire, you’re done. You don’t have a hillside in perpetuity. It’s very strange that the government did that,” he said.

Both councillor Murray Kristoff and Mayor Dave MacDonald noted that part of the issue is grouping charter operators and lodges with sport fishermen is part of the dilemma when it comes to the 12 per cent


“The way I see it is that the every day Joe should be seen different from those who make a living at it…In New Brunswick there are rivers that people bid on each year from the government, and I would hate to see something like that here,” said Mayor MacDonald.

“Every Canadian who buys a fishing license should be able to go out and catch a fish, otherwise we move toward privatizing the resource,” added Kristoff.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Toronto-based director Michelle Latimer was recently scrutinized after years of claiming she was of Algonquin and Metis descent. (CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young)
Haida activist calls for hefty fines, jail time against those who claim to be Indigenous

Filmmaker Tamara Bell proposing the Indigenous Identity Act – to dissuade ‘Indigenous identity theft’

Prince Rupert lawyer, Donald A. Silversides has been appointed to the BC Liberals Election Organizing Committee, announced the party on Jan 21. (Contributed photo)
Don Silversides appointed to BC Liberal election organizing committee

Prince Rupert lawyer is the current BC Liberals acting president

Brett Alexander Jones is wanted on several warrants province-wide, in connection with multiple charges. Jan. 21, 2021. Kitimat RCMP photo
Kitimat RCMP searching for man wanted on several warrants province-wide

Jones is described as a five-foot 10-inches Caucasian man, with blond hair and blue eyes.

Rose Sawka, a 91-year old Acropolis Manor resident received her COVID-19 vaccination on Jan. 20, one day after an outbreak was declared at the long-term care facility. Her son Terry Sawka visited with her through the window, like she is seen in an Oct. 2020 photo. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)
Acropolis Manor COVID-19 cases jump to 20 confirmed

Prince Rupert long term care facility received vaccinations

Illicit drug use has spread in the Northern Health region and overdose emergency calls increased in Prince Rupert by 29.5 per cent from 2019 to 2020. (Photo:THE NEWS/files)
Overdose emergency calls in Prince Rupert spikes by 43.6 % in five years

Northern Health issues illicit drug use warnings

Businesses continue to struggle under COVID-19 restrictions as the pandemic reaches the one-year mark. (B.C. government)
Another 564 COVID-19 cases, mass vaccine plan coming Friday

15 more deaths, community cluster declared in Williams Lake

A specialized RCMP team is investigating a suspicious trailer, which might have connections to the illicit drug trade, found abandoned outside a Cache Creek motel. (Photo credit: <em>Journal</em> files)
Police probe U-Haul trailer linked to illicit drugs left outside Cache Creek motel

Hazardous materials found inside believed to be consistent with the production of illicit drugs

Premier John Horgan leaves the podium following his first press conference of the year as he comments on various questions from the media in the Press Gallery at B.C. Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Monday, January 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Interprovincial travel restrictions a no-go, Horgan says after reviewing legal options

The B.C. NDP government sought legal advice as concerns of travel continue

Gem Lake Top, at Big White Ski Resort, seen at Jan. 8. (Big White Ski Resort)
Big White cancels $7.3M in lift tickets, accommodations due to COVID-19 orders

Since November, the ski resort has been forced to make several changes

Darlene Curylo scratched a $3M ticket, BCLC’s largest ever scratch and win prize. (BCLC)
Kelowna woman in shock after winning BCLC’s largest-ever instant-ticket prize

Darlene Curylo couldn’t believe her eyes when she saw the amount of money she’d won from a scratch ticket

While each person has different reasons for becoming homeless, a UBCO study shows they learn through their interactions with different services to perform ‘as homeless’ based on the expectations of service providers. (Contributed)
Kelowna homeless forced to ‘perform’ for resources, says UBCO study

One participant in the study said ‘It is about looking homeless, but not too homeless’

Mowi Canada West’s Sheep Pass salmon farm, the company’s final B.C. operation to receive certification from the Aquaculture Steward Council. The Canadian Federation of Agriculture (CFA) is questioning a government decision to phase out salmon farms in the Discovery Islands. (Photo supplied by Mowi Canada West)
Canadian Federation of Agriculture backs B.C. salmon farmers

Letter to prime minister calls for federal “champion” for aquaculture growth

Gov. Gen. Julie Payette takes the royal salute from the Guard of Honour as she makes her way deliver the the throne speech, Wednesday, September 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand
Gov. Gen. Julie Payette resigns, apologizes for ‘tensions’ at Rideau Hall

Payette, who is the Queen’s representative in Canada, has been the governor general since 2017

Grounded WestJet Boeing 737 Max aircraft are shown at the airline’s facilities in Calgary, Alta., Tuesday, May 7, 2019. WestJet will operate the first commercial Boeing 737 Max flight in Canada today since the aircraft was grounded in 2019 following two deadly crashes. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Passengers unfazed as WestJet returns Boeing 737 Max to service on Vancouver flight

After a lengthy review process, Transport Canada cleared the plane to return to Canadian airspace

Most Read