VICTORIA (February 28, 2019) – Cariboo-Chilcotin MLA Donna Barnett stood in the legislature today demanding to know why guide outfitters are being denied rightful compensation for government decisions that are damaging their industry.
Last November, Barnett wrote to the Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development on behalf of 13 guide outfitters whose moose allocations were cancelled for the 2018 season – denying them their livelihood and ability to provide for their families. The Minister acknowledged his staff are looking into compensation for these guide outfitters, but it’s now February and these outfitters are still waiting.
“Today we heard another non-answer and another deflection – leaving these hard-working, tax-paying British Columbians facing hardship thanks to the actions of this government,” said Barnett. “The Minister is quick to defend his work on moose management but seems to have no heart for the guide outfitters and their families who are directly affected by his decisions. In 2016, our BC Liberal government took action to compensate guide outfitters when bull-moose hunting was banned for the season. Why is the Minister not acting now when the precedent is clearly there?”
Licensed guide outfitters represent a cornerstone of the rural economy, employing over 2,000 people and providing hunting services to roughly 5,000 non-residents each year. Their work generates over $100 million in annual economic activity.