SEHAB Meeting October 18 - 20, 2013 Summary and Agenda

FOC Regional Headquarters, Vancouver BC,
October 21, 2013   1:00pm – 2:45pm. 



Attending      SEHAB   

                                           - Jack Minard, Central East Coast Vancouver Island

                                           - Jim Armstrong, South Side Fraser River

                                           - Brian Smith, Vancouver / Burrard Inlet

                                           - Dianne Sanford, Sunshine Coast


                                           - Bonnie Antcliffe Director, Ecosytem Management Branch

                                           - Kaarina McGivney Manager, SEP

                                          - Alice Cheung Manager. Stewardship and Community Involvement

                                          - FPP?  Adam Silverstein.  Rec.Fisheries Cons. Partnerships Program.

0100     Opening Remarks: Jack MInard (Chair for this meeting)  Thank you’s

Mentioned next meeting to be at Adams River, invitation for RHQ to be there and minister

0105    Opening Remarks: Bonnie Antcliffe -  make meetings happen in the morning. Priority given to have morning meeting. No new outstanding items from RHQ, same path. 

Core Funding and Capacity

  • Funding issues – Although we do appreciate the availability of another opportunity for funding projects the timeframe for Recreational Fisheries application and spending is poorly timed and is only useful to groups that already have a project “shovel-ready and at least half the money needed to proceed. The Nov 1 deadline is not doable for the majority of groups and having to spend the grant well before fisheries windows open let alone low flows have made in-stream projects possible leaves most groups unable to make this new money work for them.  
  • Jack – Difficult to work within timeline.
  • Adam – beyond our control, his job to try and smooth out process. Projects funded for this year need to have “shovel in the ground now”.  Nov. 4 – Dec 18 , new form, going live end of this week, window for next year , 6 weeks – April 2014 to March 2015. 
  • 50% funded by other partners, amount is all that is necessary.
  • By all accounts received the process is onerous and the reporting is difficult.
  • If the next 1.5 years goes well, could be long term funding. Unprecedented timelines for DFO  – Bonny – first round “blinders on” get it out, now Adam on board, brings leadership and smooth out process.  Meeting with CA’s south coast starting next week.  Adam Silverstein – This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  contact him for more information.
  • If groups are depending on new levels of funding through PSF, the timings to put these two grants together are impossible. We would suggest more thought on supporting collaboration and more “grass roots” opportunity if any further funding opportunities arise from the Federal Government. Performance standards protocols.
  • The questions community are asking: “Are we simply trying to get money out the door or are we attempting to do good, effective work on the ground to assist rebuilding recreational fish species’ populations and habitats?” Many comments about seeing that the federal Government appears to be concentrating on money and NOT about the best outcomes. “The importance of a project should not be determined by money but its effectiveness to protect or restore the resource.”  Adam here to assist, smooth process. 
  • Rotation and Temporary backfilling of CA positions – For our community the local CA position is a backbone to group’s capacity. Most of the activity undertaken by groups is supported in some way by the CA. It is therefore important that two things occur; one, the CA’s need to have time to mentor and understand the nuances of each group in order to build trust and relationship. And two, every group and School Classroom project benefits from CA involvement. In the case of school projects a CA (DFO have education co-ordinators who do most of this) is a must to assist with eggs, transfers and aquaculture licences. Without a knowledgeable CA, particularly under the PAR requirements, some projects simply fall off the radar, are done without proper supervision or resources or are organized and readied by many volunteers only to not move forward without CA participation and leadership. CA's need to be knowledgeable as to fish culture techniques in order to assist community understand the link between BMP's and fish health, production plans and watershed / fish health.
  • Has to go national – from there to regional.  Trying to stabilize, but with downsizing not able to.
  • Bonny.  Different dynamic now, succession planning.  6 vacant positions, temporary until long term plans can be made.  Support from CA’s to get better support to the community. Gap in “who to go to” in whole suite of concerns – link between communities and technical support.  Jack and Dianne
  • Water Sustainability Act – We are looking forward to analyzing this new legislation and making comment. SEHAB members and constituents have expressed curiosity about DFO’s role in formulating the legislation and if DFO is pleased with the new Act.  Sehab will be making comment.  What is role of DFO?  Old, around 6 years, groundwater is piece being looked at.  Starting back up, meeting needs to be scheduled with the Province.  2009/10 involvement, then wait and see after election.

  • Minister’s Visits – A large piece of SEHAB capacity and responsiveness to our constituent groups are opportunities to have face to face time with the Minister of Fisheries. To facilitate this opportunity we have determined our October 2014 meeting will take place at a location where the Board can experience the Adams River Sockeye run. We are expecting that this predicted large run will attract the Minister and it is likely she will be visiting the Adams during this run as well. If so, we would ask for a short that time. Jack – SEHAB has a different role, not special interest.

Reminder to Bonny that we need to meet with minister, we would like to be at par with SFAB. Need face to face time.  Kaarina – is on her radar to put Sehab on meeting list.  Challenging because agendas are built in Ottawa.  Bonny – timing for Adams meeting?  Priority for peak of run, and when people will be there. 

  • Further, we ask that whenever the Minister is visiting the West Coast that SEHAB is considered when scheduling the Minister’s time. At certain times there are larger issues that we may wish to discuss with the Minister and would ask your support in facilitating meetings in Ottawa from time to time. 
  • Core funding for CEDP and PIP Hatchery Facilities - Without proper resourcing this important enhancement begins to fail. 
    A question from community: “If a facility is closed do the funds that were attributed to that facility return to general accounts or are they used to rebuild capacity in/at other facilities?” SEHAB urges Department to consider this as an important means to improving capacity in facilities that are operating with less that optimal funding. Are we  considering it important to close some facilities as habitat is rebuilt? Safe working conditions for people and fish is important to all and takes proper resources.
  • Brian – where does funding go – to SEP, other programs? 
  • Kaarina – depends on the situation.  Program is reduced as budget is reduced.  No cutback to program – within existing budget, we can realign funding.  Managing priorities.  Best use of funds – mainly kept within SEP.  More demand than funds.  Looking at addressing greatest priority. 
  • Jack – SEHAB can assist with prioritizing allocation of funds.  Like to be involved if possible.  Health and safety issues.  Infrastructure strategy – Alice. PSF – CEDP partnerships for health and safety.
  • DFO Spokesperson - We are noticing far more Fisheries and Oceans media presence over the past few months. This is great and assists the public understanding of many issues. We are not yet seeing a concerted effort to let Canadians know how the new Fisheries Act is progressing, what policies and new legislation are falling out of the implementation of the Act and linking these to local issues . 
  • Jack – GOODISH, would like to encourage habitat considerations, COHEN and WSP dovetailing.
  • We are also still not hearing clear comment about how the WSP, Cohen and the New Fisheries Act are dovetailing.
  • Who is in charge?  Implementation questions. Loss of trust – who do we talk to.
  • Bonny – meeting in June, expecting to move forward in near future.  No documents for release yet, but hopefully within the next month or so.  “Stay tuned”  Focus on fisheries, risk based.  Devil in the details.
  • Adam – last 10 years, lots of changes.  Whole new policy, new legislation, takes time for leadership to build new policy and restaff and implement.  Policy will be replaced, let us know when we know what it is.  Not as strict as it has been in the past.  What really matters for fish, and fish production.
  • Having a spokesperson who can answer questions would assist not only community’s capacity by providing a sense of leadership and direction but would assist the Departments capacity to allay fear, distrust and confusion.
  • Appreciate Alice’s time to meet with us, but where is the leadership. Do we really care about fish? -Jack.  Bonny – need to put more thought into this.  Nothing to take out to people.  Policy stuff in the works.  CA’s and staff need to                get details to be able to disseminate to public and practicing professionals.  Will get it out as soon as possible once it is available. 
  • We re-iterate our desire to have other Branches available for discussion at our SEHAB RHQ meetings. Again this a capacity issue because we can get the latest and most up to date info, direction and thinking that we can then                          comment on with confidence and pass along to community. 
  • Federal Consultation Secretariat – Another capacity issue is our place in the “pecking order”. We notice other groups are on the consultation website and calendar they are being mentioned for their contributions. (  There is ample of room in the box with photo / write up for any and all of the consultation processes / players. SEHAB has been reduced to only the two hours we spend with RHQ personnel three times per year. Our weekend meetings do not appear. We, very much want to see a direct link to our minutes posted on the site. It must be said again that SEHAB is one of the only groups that represent the interest of all Canadians because we are not a user group. We work for the betterment of the resource itself not what it provides us with.
  • Kaarina – keep minutes short and succinct

            WSP and Habitat Protection

  • Fisheries Protection Program – We are looking forward to an update on this.  Not much to report.  Next month?  or so?
  • Riparian Area Regulation – We have observed along with many others that the RAR is not working to protect fish and fish habitat. We continue to see accumulating impacts as isolated projects move forward without any overview or planning.                       
  • “Professional Reliance” is the term we hear and so much is resting on. However, we are aware that many listed as QEP’s are “signing off” on projects and activities they are not qualified to sign off on. The results are loss of habitat and further degradation. Add to this the reduction in staff and resources to every section of the Department and it adds up to greater accumulating impacts and further losses.  JIM – don’t have to be scientist, biologist, 3 references, you’re it.  RAR not working.  Examples.
  • This whole process has added up to a distinct lack of direction and a kind of “guerrilla” action mentality. Wetlands drained, habitat altered and damaged and un-regulated use of water are adding up to further accumulating effects. There are far fewer, if any, people anymore with the authority to curtail an activity either sanctioned or not sanctioned.
  • There many examples of “Professional Reliance” not working. 
  • Jack – province has pushed to local level, QEP’s are looked to. 
  • Adam – not able to give input at this time.  Role of SEHAB and groups we work with to push professional college of biologists  - how does new regulation mesh with RAR?  ie. – Geotechs doing QEP work, not qualified.  FPP should have role to support local groups
  • Bonny suggests Ken Ashley, Marvin  be approached
  • Habitat Description – SEHAB would like a definitive description of what actually constitutes habitat under the new act. We hear conflicting reports.   Don’t know.
  • Consequences – There appears to be little consequence to damaging habitat. We suggest there needs to be a consequence when a system is not working and where we are continually losing habitat from the lack of planning and mitigation. Where is DFO on the issue of inspecting, monitoring and ticketing?  Conditions of authorization are enforceable conditions – how to write them is the challenge.  “Code of practice”.  Authorization is posted at the site.  Tools are there to bring this into practice, consequences are coming. Bonny and Adam. 

Pacific Aquaculture Regulations

  • SEP Enhancement  Best Management Practices - We look forward to our continued relationship with department on the refinement of the BMP's guidance documents.  Many of the suggestions of the PAR committee are evidenced in the wording and layout of the BMP's binder. Having documented BMP’s will assist groups in understanding the role they play in the enhancement and health of our salmonid resource. 
  • Exploring PAR Committee Effectiveness – Provincial/Federal discussions surrounding steelhead enhancement and the requirement for Aquaculture licencing has brought up a request to participate in some way with this process. We have an excellent, working committee that could be employed to help sort out some of these issues. Community has noted that neither the Province nor the Federal Government wishes to hold these licences. The question from community of course is; “Why not? And, “If not why would we as a non-profit society helping government realize their responsibilities want to hold them?”
    The SEHAB Par Committee would like to schedule regular meetings (number per year and timings to be negotiated) in order to have a regular sounding board that other agencies and initiatives can be directed to as they are scheduled well in advance.
     SEHAB PAR Committee are planning to set up a meeting with stakeholders (DFO, BCMFLRO? (BC Fisheries), Freshwater Society and other currently involved in Steelhead enhancement as soon as possible to determine direction, support and to plan next steps.
  • Jack – SEHAB to set up meeting with 5 groups, Province, and DFO in regard to who holds ST license.
  • Brian – Province and FWFS will not hold licenses.  Have resources to assist with process, not hold license.  Key issue to Diana Trager is that Nov 1 deadline cannot be met.  What is the liability associated with holding license?  Does it need to be “signed” by an individual?
  • Meeting to clarify what has been agreed between participating parties in regard to holding ST licenses, including the Province and DFO is in process of being arranged by Sehab.

 Next Meetings

            The next year’s meetings have been set to facilitate entries into our calendars;
            March 8, 9 and 10 in Vancouver with RHQ meeting on March 11 at 9:00 AM
            June 7, 8, and 9 in Vancouver with RHQ meeting on June 10 at 9:00 AM
            October 18, 19, 20 and 21in Squilax (east of Salmon Arm) Looking to facilitate RHQ
            meeting into the weekend meeting for all our members to be a part of                                                                                                                         

Alice = working level, with PAR , WSP and habitat.  Kudos to DFO on Murray Creek project.
Thanks to Adam to being there, years of habitat experience behind him.

Action Items RHQ/SEHAB Oct, 21 2013

Supply SEHAB with information on CA’s and RRU personnel. 




Sehab minutes to be kept short and succinct – posted on more than SEHAB website.  Secretariat Guidelines Criteria for SFAB, does SEHAB follow?




Approach Ken Ashley, Marvin Rosenenau

And others to advocate for better professional reliance under RAR




Action  item – after speaking to Sue Pollard, Brian will speak to Diana Trager

Set up meeting





Action to discuss with Diana Trager the Nov 1 deadline and reactions if not implemented




Obtain copy of DFO guidelines provided to Province  on seaweed wrack harvest




a.   Review of Issues carried forward from November 2, 3 and 4, 2012, Vancouver, BC





  1. SEHAB would like to know how they can voice their opinions on the Enbridge Pipeline.  Bonnie suggested that they participate in the Enbridge Open Houses.

DFO to provide the web link describing the process for advertising the Enbridge Open Houses.  Link is:

Graham van der Slagt


  1. Concern that Seymour Licence will expire on June 15th 2013 instead of June 30th like all of the other PAR enhancement licences

DFO to check on expiry date on Seymour Licence and report back to Brian Smith

Graham van der Slagt



  1. SEHAB would still like to participate in the next IHPC meeting as an observer

DFO to verify when the next meeting is taking place

Graham van der Slagt

Communication breakdown – will be rectified

Discussion with ZoAnn, participant needs to be appointed.

  1. PAR Workshop

Short-term prep for workshop

Graham / ZoAnn


  1. Major concerns related to lack of assessment into “beach wrack” harvesting

DFO will check into this


Some information received Jack is following up

Report from Laura Tryon states harvest is extremely destructive.

Guidelines and standards given to province.  Tola?



Items from Smithers Meeting June 8 – 10, 2012





  1. Recommending a spokesperson representing Department in media

Jack requested it be taken to Ottawa by Bonnie.

Name spokesperson soon after Bill C-38 policies are determined to explain new paradigms. Also to have fast, accurate DFO presence in media.

Under Advisement


  1. Concerns about CAs: Reiterating the importance of these positions in engaging and maintaining volunteerism. Advising that these positions require long-term commitment, a broad skill set and succession planning

Create pool of qualified candidates

Provide long-term support for the CIP and PIP Programs

Not moving forward at this time

  1. 8.      Online operating statements not working well according to information gathered by SEHAB

DFO compare internal investigations and recommendations with SEHAB information

Prior to November SEHAB meeting

More types of activity OS’s being developed

Will not move until changes to the Fisheries Act have become policy

  1. (Alice) Establish meeting protocols (who chairs them, how are the meetings organized, how minutes are taken, etc), how information is shared between DFO and SEHAB, what the expectations are for confidentiality, etc. This is something we can flesh out at the November meeting.

SEHAB / Alice

Prior to November SEHAB meeting

SEHAB builds agenda therefore it is agreed SEHAB will Chair. Meeting notes will be taken by both DFO and SEHAB and upon internal vetting both sets will form the record


  1. (Kaarina) Scope out potential role for SEHAB at the IHPC/SEP Subcommittee.  Like to discuss further at the November SEHAB meeting. Ideal to have all interests at the same table. Broader understanding and perspective.




K: need to talk about this.

SEHAB will be invited to send observers. No meeting scheduled since June.

Jack is contact


  1. Monitoring Tool (Bob Harding) Follow-up with Dave Carter to see if he has a summary of his findings (trends, areas of concern, etc) that he can share




G: Spoke with Dave.  Not ready to be shared.