Sunshine Coast

Gibsons Garden Hotel

963 Gibsons Way, Gibsons, BC V0N 1V8, Canada

Nov 3 – 5, 2017


Friday Nov 3rd, 2017

Hotel conference room

Attendees: Leandre Vigneault, Dianne Sanford, Brian Smith, Wayne Salewski, Cindy Verbeek, Paul Cipywnyk, Elizabeth Hardy, Jan Lemon, ZoAnn Morten,                              

Guests:            Lesley England, Fraser South candidate

Angela Kroning Alternate

Regrets:           Jim Shinkewski, Ian Bruce, Lee Hesketh


SEHAB Board Business

1900     Call meeting to order


Standing Committee Reports

Financial update

  • Receiving finances was efficient this year. Invoices have been paid.
  • Expenses for June meeting was a bit over because we stayed the additional day to meet with the minister’s assistant.
  • We are right on budget at this point.

Membership Update

  • North Fraser representative (to replace Jim Armstrong) Lesley England is here today (welcome Lesley). Support documents are on Basecamp under Documents/Membership. EH will poll participants early this week to decide if Lesley will be new SEHAB member for South Fraser. All will respond by Thurs
  • Table opened for Lesley to introduce herself and describe activities.
    • 2nd year as director of volunteers and communications and secretary at Serpentine Enhancement Society
    • set up communications so that all members know what’s going on.
    • Increased volunteers by 15% over past 12 months. New way of bringing volunteers on board. Application, interviews etc.
    • Instrumental in successful restoration project.
    • Built up communications with MLA in area who presented their group in the house.
  • Discussion re replacement for Jack. Consensus: Ask Lorraine to be Rep and Dave as alternate.
  • Action item: Ask DFO to fund another position on SEHAB so that the large area on the island is covered effectively. (Or at least make assurances that if we go over budget the extra will be covered (EH & CV will write letter to DFO with this request and bring up at next RHQ
  • Guidelines for membership have been created and put on basecamp. SEHAB members will look at these and provide feedback by next meeting.
  • Alternate for North Coast is needed. JL will work with CA in Terrace to find someone and keep EH informed.

Meeting structure discussion

  • Suggestion to move to two meetings per year was presented and discussed. Consensus was that three meetings are still preferable but should be moved to Sunday, Monday Tuesday rhythm. All present agreed to try this.
  • Suggestion to have two meetings minimum in the lower mainland with the option of having the third meeting (most likely June) being outside the lower mainland if and when needed. All agreed.
  • Forums will be held once per year. ( when we have topics, organizers and budget) held once a year wording – we may be held to this
  • Basic structure: Sunday afternoon SEHAB business, dinner, evening forum or continued SEHAB meeting. Monday roundtables, DFO and other special guests. Tues am prep for RHQ meeting, Tues lunch with DFO RHQ staff and meeting afterwards with entire group.


  • Website has been updated to iron out some inconsistencies and update CA’s.
  • Some people are missing bios, pictures. All will send Paul or Cindy a bio and picture by Nov. 20.
  • Everyone has been asked to look at the website: If you notice anything let communications team know including things that could go up to peak interest, stories.
  • CV will send minutes from Feb and June meetings to webmaster by Sunday.
  • Group photo this weekend.
  • CV will update communications primer with explanations of emails etc.
    • Direct response required then send in a direct email to board only. Member can decide if alt needs to know.
    • Email lists – board only, board and alternates, board/alts & DFO, secretary, Exec.
    • Work on document together – put on basecamp as google doc.
  • Format of round tables - CV will update and post onto basecamp.
    • Identify top three issues. Group submission, Stories/Concerns, request to SEHAB/action item

Working Groups


  • Conversations have happened wrt Steelhead licensing issues. There is a draft? MOU between DFO and Province wrt to steelhead enhancement and management that is in process. PAR committee has asked for a copy of this. DS (was this Brian PAR chair?) will write letter to province asking the status of this MOU and send. SEHAB will bring this up as a topic at RHQ.

Southern Chinook

Meeting requests

  • Sarah from Wild Salmon Policy consultation process. has been asked to come Saturday Nov 4th.
  • SEP framework. – Feb meeting.

Review current letters and discuss follow up

  • Suggestion – DS will write a letter on behalf of SEHAB to thank DFO for reinstituting SEP programs that had been cut.

Stock Assessment, WSP, Science, Data Collection

  • Wild Salmon Policy will be discussed Saturday in depth.
  • Suggestion – bring up stock assessment and lack of information being entered into the DFO database at the meeting tomorrow.
  • Not having the data is becoming a hinderance in management of steelhead.

Discuss SEHAB member tasks

  • Tabled for later.

2100     Adjourned


Saturday November 4th, 2017

Hotel Conference Room

RoundTable Issues

Attendees: Leandre Vigneault, Dianne Sanford, Brian Smith, Wayne Salewski, Cindy Verbeek, Paul Cipywnyk, Elizabeth Hardy, Jan Lemon, ZoAnn Morten,

Guests: Lesley England, Fraser South candidate; Angela Kroning  Dennis Verbeek, observer

Regrets: Jim Shinkewski, Ian Bruce, Lee Hesketh,


0900     Chair called meeting to order

Motion: Accept minutes from June meeting as presented. Moved. Seconded. Accepted.

Round TableReports

1015     Program Update and discussion with DFO. 

Attendees: As above - joined by Adam Silverstein, Sarah Murdoch – WSP representative.

Regrets: Tina Chestnut

CIP/RRU update by DFO

Fisheries Act renewal– Tola Coopper is key person to get a hold of for this.

Sunshine coast update

  • Will hire someone in Comox short term basis to cover this area. Expecting January. Long term plan to have someone in Powell River.
  • Contract extended for three years to provide support for hatcheries on the coast.
  • DFO committed to continue trying to sort through Chapman creek issues. There have been challenges in production there for some time.
  • School programs will not be left without eggs. Assurance that this will be sorted out.
  • Recreational fishery at the mouth to harvest most of fish that are returning and have enough that come back to support broodstock is the primary purpose of the Chapman creek hatchery. Over time things change wrt stream conditions, fishery, and stocks and we need to continually re-evaluate the purposes of the hatchery and enhancement. There will be trade offs. DFO wants production that makes sense and meet goals.
  • Minimum flow issue at Chapman – (also exists in other streams) – different for each area. Have to make sure there is drinking water for people and some water in that creek. New provincial water act is supposed to solve some of these concerns.
  • Production planning – agreed that there needs to be better communication about why numbers are changing in production. Eg. years ago there was science based evidence to show that Coho production was driving down wild coho so numbers were reduced but groups were not told why. This caused frustration.
  • NB takes 5-12 years to understand impact to fish as a result of changes in production plan.
  • Request to DFO – communicate better why changes in production plan are made. DFO agreed.
  • 2017 brood year production plan is online. Then click on the pdf of production plans for your region (south coast / north coast) 
  • Every year DFO does integrated fisheries management plan. How we’re going to fish salmon in that area. There are public consultations for months. This process starts at the end of the next couple weeks. Your window into this consultation is your CA. End of January is when these are set. Should have by mid Feb.

Coastal Restoration Fund

  • A list of projects that were funded will be available once there is an agreement with the recipient.
  • There were three letters that went out – 1) you got the money, 2) your project was not eligible, 3) was eligible but your project was not funded because there’s not enough money to go around.
  • Question from groups - How do we improve for next time? Answer: this is challenging because we don’t know when the next time is so it’s hard to provide that information. Lots of options discussed on how to move forward wrt a second round of funding if that’s even possible
  • Discussion: Monies are not available for interior. This is an issue.
  • Discussion around the fact that PSF is in the pool and smaller groups competing for the same pot of money don’t have a chance.

Contribution program

  • Contribution program (new way of funding for SEP projects) has been submitted to Treasury Board.
  • Will be new application and reporting system for groups. If this gets approved (no reason to believe it won’t) there will be a training period of DFO staff to make sure groups get money by June.
  • Advantages – 1) 90% of money can be given up front 2) larger groups can have multi-year
  • There will be challenges (150 contracts) but we will DFO will work with each group to make this as smooth a transition as possible. CA’s will still have their money for their area and can help groups figure it all out.
  • There will be two levels of funding ie – CEDP’s will be treated differently than PIP’s.

CIP - Emerging Opportunities & Challenges

  • Annual reporting – challenging to provide info on what the groups are doing but they are working on improved annual reporting for the program. This will show up in our groups’ reporting requirements. Goal: building functional and repeatable annual report to use internally and externally to show value of program. This will provide a source of numbers and stories to be able to share in a variety of contexts. SEHAB is available to make comments on any draft of this template.

Genetically Based Targets for Enhancement Salmon Contributions

  • Ruth Withler is the core scientist working on effects of enhancement on wild salmon genetics in BC.
  • Practices may be changed based on this research to reduce impacts found.
  • Want to ensure benefits of enhancement are higher than trade offs.
  • Dave Willis – will come to February meeting to share what they have found in BC wrt impact of enhanced stocks on wild stock genetics.

Ground water licencing.

  • There are new ground water licencing requirements coming from the province. If facilities need ground water their facility could be at risk because there is a (FITFIR) “first in time first in right” criteria and if they were not first they may not get a licence.
  • Suggestion: SEHAB could be influential in advocating with province for our groups. SEHAB will write to province to share our interests in the new ground water licencing changes.
  • DFO will get SEHAB a list of facilities that are affected (there are 28).
  • SEHAB reps will give our groups a heads up.

Production planning for 2018 Brood Year

  • Planning is starting now – SEHAB members will tell groups to start talking to CA now.

Other questions/comments from SEHAB

  •  FYI to DFO: Lack of implementation of ISMPs (Integrated Stormwater Management Plans). These are supposed to focus on overall watershed health, and all municipalities are supposed to have completed them some time ago.
  • Shorelines are seeing even more development pressures. Eg. a large dock and seaplane float approved in an RCA on the Sunshine coast. There is a need to coordinate with other approval agencies such as FNLRO. 
  • Where is the department going on enforcement and what is the future of enhancement and stricter habitat regulations?  We are way behind other countries in fry output and our fishermen would not even catch chinook if it wasn’t for US efforts. Answer:  We manage salmon differently than US and other countries. Production planning is appropriate for our goals. DFO will look into inviting SEP manager of assessment and planning to speak to concerns. Pacific Salmon treaty being renegotiated right now.
  • Dike clearing - we need to encourage the various agencies to communicate with each other and also allow for some flexibility when it comes to trade-offs between the diking authority's recently mandated buzz cuts, and pressures on habitat, particularly in urban and suburban areas where many of our dikes have been biodiversity hotbeds for decades. We also need to communicate better on the local level -- govt people come and govt people go, and with new people come new practices, sometimes detrimental to what volunteers have been trying to accomplish for years.
  • Lack of habitat project notifications and out of window works. CA’s and local enforcement should know what projects are going on in their areas and someone local should have input if projects are being proposed that will work outside the instream works windows. Local input into decision making: there has been no notification, no input, no enforcement. DFO’s response: if this happens send details to Adam via email and he will bring appropriate place.
  • Kinder Morgan anti fish spawning mats. DFO have had biologists visit the site. This is a normal practice. Adam has some information – could we get status on this at RHQ.
  • DFO staffing. Enforcement, CA’s. This needs to be brought up with the minister.

1300     DFO WSP Review Staff update and SEHAB responses

Sarah Murdoch – WSP

  • Discussion re communication between DFO and province. There is a move in that direction. Top priorities wrt collaboration btwn gov’s in SEHAB’s perspective:
    • Landscape level planning/professional reliance model
    • Steelhead management and enhancement
    • Dike management and construction
    • Shoreline protection
  • MAPS on north coast is a good example of a success.
  • Collaborative tools needed
  • Example of something that works: Integrated advisory board on Haida Gwaii between Fed, Prov & First Nations
  • Suggestion for SEHAB rep that is from First Nations background. Discussion around who this might be. SEHAB Membership will follow up.
  • Confirmation that WSP is for entire Pacific and Yukon for all salmon populations. Cohen commission was narrow but DFO is looking at all of Pacific not just Fraser sockeye.
  • Rebecca Reid is contact person for WSP implementation
  • Suggestions from SEHAB
    • link back to original policy in implementation plan online. Snapshot would be a good link back.
    • Letter from Minister at beginning of Implementation plan.
    • Stronger linkage to information already being gathered at hatcheries (ie fecundity, wild vs hatch fecundity etc.)
    • Implementation and planning of WSP - once done find areas where Fed/Prov overlap – riparian area, shorelines, etc. and strengthen these.
    • Better linkage between SEP community (S2S, Streamkeepers, Hatcheries, RRU restoration unit and technical support) and reporting and planning so we can see information is being used in decision making Ie Information being collected is not being entered therefore not being used in making decisions. Frustrating for those collecting the data.
    • Better feedback loop for those collecting data – good example = the head recovery program. Positive feedback for fishermen – letter saying where the fish came from – this gets people excited and gets them talking more.
  • Questions from SEHAB:
    • Fish farming – managing and granting of licensing – how does this fit into WSP? Will be included in the next draft – have heard from others that this is missing. “Is anyone looking at these through the lens of wild salmon?” More follow up needed. Nathan Taylor, Christi Miller-Saunders with Science looking at issues wrt fish farms.
    • Is there a place in WSP that will include other pieces of the ecosystem (Chum/Steelhead example, Salmon/Killer Whale)? Still unclear how ecosystem and habitat pieces will be incorporated. Question – where do you stop/draw the line?
    • Will impacts to salmon by fisheries that target things that salmon eat (ie. Herring, Krill, smelt, forage fish etc.) be included? Need to more actively manage these fisheries with salmon in mind. Provincial/Federal communication.
  • Ministry of Agriculture – interest from them about what this WSP means for them. FLNRO – Steelhead management. MOE takes care of other things. Ie. not just one group within the province.
  • Are DFO meeting with FLNRO? Yes.
  • SEHAB will write to multiple provincial agencies - who we are, what we represent, and suggest more conversation at SEHAB table. Cattlemans, BC Wildlife Fed., Provincial departments
  • Request from DFO to SEHAB for input on the WSP in these three areas: 1) are there inaccuracies? 2) is there work being done by others? 3) opportunities to collaborate? SEHAB will give a joint submission on behalf of the advisory board and individuals are still encouraged to send in their own submissions. Deadline is Dec 15th.
  • This is a huge opportunity. What do we want DFO and SEP to prioritize? Tell them. Don’t miss the opportunity.
  • SEHAB secretary will make sure everyone has Sarah’s information.

Debrief after DFO left

  • DFO will look into MOU with province wrt Steelhead. SEHAB will follow up by putting this on the next agenda (Update on Prov/Fed meetings)
  • FYI: Prov jurisdictions - Fish farm issues = Ministry of Ag.; Fisheries/management steelhead etc = Forest Lands and Natural Resources (FLNRO); water quantity = Ministry of Environment (MOE); Culverts under roads = Ministry of Transportation (MOT)


Sunday Nov 5th, 2017

Chapman Creek Hatchery Education Building - car pool

4381 Parkway Drive, Sechelt

Attendees: Leandre Vigneault, Dianne Sanford, Brian Smith, Wayne Salewski, Cindy Verbeek, Paul Cipywnyk, Elizabeth Hardy, Jan Lemon, ZoAnn Morten, Lesley England                    

Guests:,; Angela Kroning             Dennis Verbeek, observer

0930 Discussion re what to bring to RHQ

Leandre Vignault, Brian Smith and Zo Ann Morten will attend RHQ meeting

The following will be used to direct conversation:

Forest Fire impact on Riparian Zones

There is a lot of habitat disturbance to riparian zones because of forest fires. This compounds other impacts to the riparian zones and could become more critical.

Question: Can DFO work with the Provincial counterparts to come up with Riparian Zone management strategy that takes into consideration climate issues including more fires? Eg. Plant areas of less flammable species along riparian zones to act as a break (ie. Not straight pine but interspersed with deciduous trees).

Notifications for development in and around streams

Background: Notification of groups and CA’s when activity is happening in the streams is not happening. Working outside fish window. (ie. RFCPP, Burnaby) and other issues are created by this. Risk is that there is no accountability for projects that may be more serious than the QEP thinks. Also, QEP may not be qualified to sign off on a particular project.

Request: That commercial, municipal and regional governments are required to notify DFO when development is proposed in and around a stream and that groups and Fisheries Officers are notified once DFO is notified.

Request: Is there a definition of a QEP? Can it be put on the DFO website to ensure QEP’s are qualified to sign off on the project.

Request: Train Fisheries Officers around habitat issues so that they can enforce effectively.

(Habitat needs to be changed in Fisheries act.)

Enforcement and Restoration Staffing

Background: One enforcement in PG, one enforcement in Smithers. If we are going to successful in implementing the Wild Salmon Policy and Fisheries Act we need staff in these locations including enforcement and resource restoration staff.

Request: We need adequate staffing to be able to implement WSP and Fisheries Act.

SEHAB will write letter.


SEHAB will be writing letter to Province and UBCM

  • Asking them to consider alternate methods to diking control
  • Asking them to reword legislation to remove need to denude diking.

Storm Drainage

SEHAB will be writing a letter to the Province and UBCM re ISMP

  • Lack of implementation of Integrated Storm Water Management Plans

Update on SEHAB meeting timing etc.

Sunday/Mon/Tues rhythm, meeting with RHQ staff on Tues afternoon.

Next meeting Feb 4-6 or 18-20 TBD


Question to DFO: Update on MOU with Province wrt Steelhead Enhancement and Management and have there been any communications with the province.

“We were surprised to hear about this and disappointed that we were not included in development of this MOU when we are the on the ground people who could speak to this.”

SEHAB will write letter to province reminding them of who SEHAB represents and why we are interested in the MOU process. Question – Who should we send this to?

SEHAB will write letter to DFO to request status of MOU and request action on this item. Can RHQ help with this process?

Relationship with Province

SEHAB will write letter(s) to province encouraging/requesting increased relationship and communications between Prov and DFO in overlapping areas including:

  • Shoreline management/development
  • Steelhead Management and Enhancement
  • Recovery of Salmon stocks
  • Riparian zone management (wrt forest fires)
  • Water Sustainability Act (ie. groundwater licencing for SEP projects)

We will cc BC Wildlife Federation where appropriate. Ie. Enforcement, diking, riparian zone management

Ground Water Licencing

Request: List of SEP projects affected by ground water licencing.

Request: SEP needs to apply and hold the licences for SEP projects because societies don’t often own the land and are not eligible to hold the licence.

Surface Water Licencing

Questions: Has SEP done a review of FITFIR licencing on streams that have hatcheries to ensure there will be enough water for hatchery operations? Are there locations where the hatchery doesn’t have the FITFIR licence? Will they be given notice so that they can plan for low water levels?

Developments outside of what’s happening in stream

SEHAB and it’s constituents are also concerned with not only what is happening in the streams but other developments particularly development on marine coastlines.

Question: What is DFO doing about developments on Marine coastlines? How are they communicating with the province in this important area of overlapping jurisdictions?

Wild Salmon Policy

SEHAB will be submitting recommendations to the Wild Salmon Policy Implementation process through the workbook or online.

Coastal Restoration Fund

It was good to see funding for coastal restoration.

Some concerns include:

  • Many applicants didn’t get funded and would have liked an indication of why so that they could change their application for next round.
  • We understand that there may not be a second round – some groups have invested finances and effort into preparing for second round. The department will experience frustration if this is not handled well.
  • Many groups are not eligible because they are not on the coast. There needs to be recognition that what happens inland is just as important to salmon survival.
  • Will there be staff to ensure activities happen?


Morale in DFO has visibly changed since new government. We are pleased.

Where new CA’s have come on we have been pleased with the new staff and are appreciative. Thank you.

Are there things that you (RHQ) would like input from us on that we have not covered today?


1200     Lunch/Local tour of Chapman Creek hatchery



A.   Minutes from this meeting to be ratified at Feb. meeting.

B.   Date next meeting: Feb 4-6 or 18-20 TBD

C.   Top three issues from each area and requests for speakers to DFO ASAP - Jan 15 at latest.

D.   Draft agenda due to DFO on Feb 1.