Kings North MLA John Lohr is calling on the province to reveal plans for adopting the recommendations put forward in the Report of the Maritime Lobster Panel.
© John DeCoste - kingscountynews.ca
[KENTVILLE, NS] - Kings North MLA John Lohr is calling on the province to reveal plans for adopting the recommendations put forward in the Report of the Maritime Lobster Panel.
Lohr, the Tory Fisheries and Aquaculture critic, says a key component of the report focuses on instituting a one per cent per pound levy on catches. The levy would then be used towards a lobster marketing fund to promote the product on a global basis. Before a vote can be taken on the introduction of the levy, consultations with fishermen and on-shore industry sectors should be held.
The report recommends a deadline of August 2014 to determine support for the levy.
Lohr says the recommendations in the report are too important to the Nova Scotia fishing industry to allow it to fail due to inaction.
"A competent government would present industry with a plan for action, but the Liberals are leaving everyone hanging,” Lohr said.
Released in November 2013, the panel outlined 33 recommendations, including the creation of provincial fishermen’s organizations. The report also provides strategic marketing advice and action to stabilize, then increase, prices paid to harvesters.
Prince Edward Island has been much more proactive in adopting the recommendations of the report in their province, Lohr said. Throughout early 2014, they have consulted with various industry stakeholders, held a preliminary vote on the levy, which passed with 75 per cent approval, and will be ready to implement it in January 2015.