Winston: The Forgetful Fisherman's Friend
NZ First leader Winston Peters' complaint that environmental groups are being funded to participate in fisheries management while recreational fishers miss out is both wrong and comically forgetful of his own political record, says Fisheries Minister Pete Hodgson.
"About $60,000 has been spent in the past two and a half years to support the NZ Recreational Fishing Council-Ministry of Fisheries joint working group on recreational fishing reform," Mr Hodgson said. "That included funding NZRFC members of the working group to participate in public consultation meetings around the country.
"The Government has also committed $500,000 to enable improved participation by Maori in fisheries management. The $50,000 this year for environmental groups to participate in the development of an Environmental Management Strategy is simply another initiative in to support stakeholder participation.
"The gall of Mr Peters' complaint is that he has conveniently 'forgotten' that the National-NZ First Coalition Agreement promised $100,000 to recreational fishers, which was never delivered. The Ministry of Fisheries put up Budget bids consistent with the Coalition Agreement promise during the term of the National-NZ First Government but they were declined by the then Treasurer, Winston Peters."