News Release Archive

  Nova Scotia Fisheries Minister Jim Barkhouse today
  introduced enabling legislation that will provide a
  framework to strengthen fishing associations.
  "I am pleased to move forward at the request of fishing
  associations with legislation that establishes a democratic
  process for organizing limited entry fishers in Nova
  Scotia," said Mr. Barkhouse.
  The minister explained that the bill, the Fisheries
  Organizations Support Act, applies to individuals possessing
  licences for fisheries managed through a controlled number
  of participants.
  Mr. Barkhouse stressed that this is enabling legislation and
  would only apply if a majority of fishers in a region vote
  in favor of mandatory dues. 
  For purposes of vote taking, the province will be divided
  into six regions which reflect fishing zones. The Fisheries
  Department will conduct the vote, and a minimum of 60 per
  cent voter turnout is required for voting to be valid. "This
  is to ensure adequate participation from industry, and that
  an affirmative vote indeed reflects the wishes of the
  majority," Mr. Barkhouse said. 
  Following an affirmative vote, associations accredited by
  the minister can then proceed with steps to recruit
  membership. In accordance with the act, members will be
  required to pay a minimum of $100 a year in dues; however,
  associations may decide to levy higher fees.
  Mr. Barkhouse said that, over the coming weeks, the
  department will continue to work with industry to develop
  the regulations required to implement the new Act.
  The minister said that consultation has played an important
  role in developing the legislation. "The process leading up
  to this point has taken almost two years and goes back to
  February, 1994 when I was first approached by organizations
  to examine the issue of enabling legislation for mandatory
  dues checkoff. At that time, the message to me was strong
  and clear, that there has never been a greater need to have
  effective, self-financed organizations than now."
  "Moving forward on the request of industry, we have since
  then advertised the issue of mandatory dues checkoff
  throughout the regions and discussed it at a series of
  community meetings and major round table meetings with
  industry," he said.
  Mr. Barkhouse said there is growing concern from industry
  and fishing communities that their interests be adequately
  represented in decisions affecting their livelihood. "Strong
  organizations will ensure that these concerns, needs and
  interests are heard and understood by the provincial and
  federal governments," he said.
  Contact: Nadine MacAulay  902-424-0335
  NOTE TO EDITORS: For backgrounder call 902-424-4492 or
  trp                         Oct. 26, 1995