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From the Wheelhouse

Fisheries Management

Service delivery changes

Fisheries and Oceans Canada is amending delivery of certain services to make better use of current technologies, to improve service consistency and to  bring better stability to the fishing industry.

New online licensing system

Fishing licence issuing and payment services will be moving to online delivery. Beginning on January 1, 2013, a new secure service system will be available to fishers 24/7.

Any fisher who needs assistance can attend training sessions, watch Web-tutorials and consult a user guide. Information can be accessed via e-mail, a toll-free phone number or by making an appointment for in-person assistance. Payments for licensing fees can also be made by a designated representative on your behalf. To ensure a smooth transition, licensing services will remain available at local offices until March 31, 2013.

Payment for gear tags and logbooks

Fisheries and Oceans Canada is eliminating the practice whereby some fishers pay for gear tags while others do not. In addition to assuming the costs associated with gear tags, the industry will provide and distribute tags beginning in the 2013 season.

We have worked with the industry to determine where gear tags are still required. As part of these fisheries, the industry will be responsible for obtaining and paying for tags from approved suppliers. A list of approved tag suppliers will be published on the Fisheries and Oceans Canada website in coming weeks.

The Department regulates the practice concerning logbooks. The cost of logbooks is a business expense for fishers; consequently, the industry will assume the costs associated with the purchase of logbooks used for these fisheries beginning on January 1, 2013.

Logbooks used in 2012 are valid for the 2013 season and may be used. The Department will distribute the remaining logbooks from its 2012 inventory while supplies last. Information on how to obtain logbooks for the 2013 season is available on the Department’s website.

At-Sea Observer Program

As of April 1, 2013, the industry will become fully responsible for at-sea observer program costs.

The industry can now negotiate contracts directly with at-sea observer service providers who are certified by Fisheries and Oceans Canada. The Department will still be responsible for establishing program standards and certifying service providers as well as monitoring and verifying the program.

Multi-year Planning

Most fisheries will soon be managed based on multi-year plans and stock assessment advisory reports. Multi-year planning provides a predictable and stable access to the resource, which makes planning long-term activities possible and maximizes economic performance. The status of fish stocks and the fishing activities situation will continue to be monitored regularly to allow for appropriate interventions as required.

For more information

Fisheries and Oceans Canada will continue to communicate directly with fishers and their associations, as well as other key stakeholders, to ensure that everyone is informed of the upcoming changes. For more information, visit the Department's web site.

Patrick Vincent
Regional Director, Fisheries Management
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