North Island-Powell River MP Rachel Blaney speaks to NDP Party members in Merville early this year. Photo by David Gordon Koch/Campbell River Mirror

MP’s office surveys constituents about salmon restrictions

Rachel Blaney’s office is winding up a survey with local businesses to gather feedback about regional impacts of chinook (spring) salmon restrictions. The federal government imposed the restrictions last month in an effort to conserve returns to the Fraser River. In local waters, fishers are restricted to catch-and-release until July 15. One chinook will be permitted until Aug. 30, after which two can be caught.

RELATED: Chinook fishing restrictions announced

“That has had a significant impact on our riding,” Blaney, the North Island-Powell River MP, said Monday in a media teleconference. “So far we’ve heard clearly from multiple sectors that the concerns are around habitat restoration. That is key, and has been under-funded for over 15 years.”

Constituents say there are not enough DFO staff on the ground, locally, to relay information to Ottawa. The riding also needs more support for small, local hatcheries to help build up salmon numbers.

Also of note was the clarity and timing (lateness) of the announcement, Blaney added.

She expects a report will be presented to Fisheries Minister Jonathan Wilkinson in the next week or two.

“We are open to people contacting our office if they want to add anything to it,” Blaney said. “What I want to see is a strong, bold plan that this government is going to put forward to support the people however they’re impacted in this area, and make sure that we actually see the funding flowing to doing things like building up our hatcheries, making sure that we have restoration happening in our creeks and in our streams and in our rivers so that we don’t have to face this in the long-term ever again.”

•Blaney’s office is conducting a series of town-hall meetings with students on the topic of climate change. The first session was April 16 in Port McNeill. She has another planned for Comox on May 22.

“It’s been very interesting,” she said. “Our goal is to have young people presenting at every one of them…It was interesting to hear concerns about forest fires, and not knowing what the future will look like with all of the changes. We’re just not getting the rain that we need. We’re working on having a good debate and discussion within the riding to be able to bring more information back to Ottawa.”

•North Islanders are also concerned about adequate cell phone coverage and access. Blaney notes a November accident near Sayward where Duncan Moffat was injured and trapped in a truck for several days before he was spotted by a hunter. The area had no cell phone service.

Her office has received hundreds of signatures on petitions asking for cell towers to increase accessibility. Blaney has tabled a couple of the petitions in Ottawa.

“Safety is the most important factor for the folks in our riding,” she said.



reporter@comoxvalleyrecord.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

One large brood

On Sunday, May 19, a lone mallard showed up with 22 ducklings… Continue reading

McHappy Day raises $7,000 in the Comox Valley

This is the fourth year funds have gone to the Comox Valley Child Development Association

Millard Creek public nature walk Sunday

Local biologist guides public through popular Courtenay trail

A cappella group Swing Set to play Comox

Quartet to perform live for first time in two years

27th Annual Courtenay and District Fish & Game Outdoor Show coming in June

June is just around the corner and so is the 27th Annual… Continue reading

Killer of Calgary mother, daughter gets no parole for 50 years

A jury found Edward Downey guilty last year in the deaths of Sara Baillie, 34, and five-year-old Taliyah Marsman

So, do you know ‘Dave from Vancouver Island’?

Ontario man searching for fellow he travelled with in Europe 50 years ago

Toddler seriously injured after falling from Okanagan balcony

RCMP are investigating after a two-year-old boy fell from the balcony of an apartment in Kelowna

Cost jumps 35% for Trans-Canada Highway widening in B.C.

Revelstoke-area stretch first awarded under new union deal

Is vegan food a human right? Ontario firefighter battling B.C. blaze argues it is

Adam Knauff says he had to go hungry some days because there was no vegan food

Winds helping in battle against fire threatening northern Alberta town

Nearly 5,000 people have cleared out of High Level and nearby First Nation

B.C. sends 267 firefighters to help battle Alberta wildfires

Out of control fires have forced evacuations in the province

LETTER: Fletcher ‘blurs reality’ on B.C. union public construction

Bridge, highway projects awarded to companies, not unions

Most Read