Grim Future Ahead

Issues affecting our sport...
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fraser hocks
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Grim Future Ahead

Post by fraser hocks » Fri Apr 30, 2021 9:10 am



Bucking trends in fly fishing since 1970!

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Steve
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Re: Grim Future Ahead

Post by Steve » Fri Apr 30, 2021 3:11 pm

Yes lots of different views on this so far

For those who haven't seen the detail it's on this page here https://www.doc.govt.nz/get-involved/ha ... -and-game/



Dave
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Re: Grim Future Ahead

Post by Dave » Tue May 04, 2021 1:43 pm

The end of F&G being an organisation run by anglers & hunters for anglers & hunters. Supposed to be still regional but each of the new regions (and they are all two existing regions combined) will only have 4 elected councillors. That spreads things pretty thinly. Even worse with the NZ Council only having for elected councillors for the whole country. No-one on both NZ & regional councils will result in no communication between NZ Council and Regional Councils at governance level. Quite how that is going to improve things I don't know.
With the Government appointing 50% of the councillors and able to remove councillors at will, F&G will no longer have independence. Any attempt to not do what the Government wants will see councillors removed and replaced to get the outcome the Government wants (like ECAN). Government control but no Government funding. In the long term this will be a disaster.
Dave



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fraser hocks
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Re: Grim Future Ahead

Post by fraser hocks » Tue May 04, 2021 2:45 pm

What real authority do DoC have over this change? Is there grounds to fight this? Surely as relevant stakeholders the people that pay for it to exist have some say over this? We don't live in a dictatorship, or last time I checked we didn't.


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Dave
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Re: Grim Future Ahead

Post by Dave » Tue May 04, 2021 6:45 pm

Sorry Fraser in this case we live in a dictatorship. The Minister of Conservation is all powerful over Fish & Game but does need to get some changes through parliament. These changes relate to the appointed councillors and the change to elected members on the NZ council. She can amalgamate the regions under the existing Act as well as reduce the number of councillors. Quite what is going to happen with this tear's elections is unknown but the elections are legally required to go ahead.



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fraser hocks
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Re: Grim Future Ahead

Post by fraser hocks » Tue May 04, 2021 7:41 pm

My main issue over all this, is that the councilors are appointed by the minister for conservation. A council is meant to be exactly that, a council. If people are chosen by one person then it isn't a council any more, its a nominated body (isn't that how the Gestapo was formed?). Surely that point can be protested by license holders?

Further to that, how can a conservation minister be allowed to appoint councilors at her own discretion, when the entire entity is self funded (with license fees)??? I'm sure a good lawyer could easily find huge illegality's to that!


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mjl
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Re: Grim Future Ahead

Post by mjl » Tue May 04, 2021 10:33 pm

As a government entity, ultimate responsibility for how F&G operates as an organisation falls to the minister. I read the review. Even as an outsider it seems clear that there have been issues with the governance of F&G for a long time and change was necessary. Reading between the lines, it appears the previous CEO at least tried to pursue governance reforms in house. When that failed, it was inevitable that somebody from outside would step in and do it for them. The minister would be negligent if they let things trundle along regardless.

The councils do not need to be elected. There are no doubt hundreds of government entities and services you pay for that you have no say in how they are governed. Rightly or wrongly, one of the perceived shortfalls was the lack of relevant skills and diversity on the councils. There is no doubt the current democratically elected volunteers are passionate about fishing and hunting but you also need members that are passionate about running organisations and with the necessary governance skills. The reviewers believe the only way to get that is to target professionals with the desired skills and experience and pay them for their services. This is probably true. However, with the authority for all the governance functions supposedly shifting to the national body it is only that entity that requires these skills and experience. It is not as clear why (beyond gender balance and inclusion of traditional owners) the regional councils couldn’t remain fully elected.

Whether all the recommendations are necessary is debatable, but the review painted a bleak picture and it seemed universally accepted that there was need for improvement. There is a good chance that the organisation itself will be better off. Doing nothing was probably a bigger risk to the success of F&G as a business.



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fraser hocks
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Re: Grim Future Ahead

Post by fraser hocks » Wed May 05, 2021 8:22 am

So sounds like the end of freshwater fishing in NZ is on the horizon?


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Steve
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Re: Grim Future Ahead

Post by Steve » Wed May 05, 2021 12:09 pm

Thanks Martin for your thoughts, there seems to be a lot of concern about the loss of democracy, but unfortunately, democracy has not served F&G well, as the report outlines.

Unfortunately most councils have not had councilors with the necessary professional, legal, accounting, environmental science, or RMA knowledge to really tackle the issues, and have not been able to hold staff to account. Or more simply, they just don't truly understand their governance role. I know the reviewers received an awful lot of info, highlighting those exact things, and I agree with most of what they have come out with. The new system will still have to do as the act requires, they will still have to manage, maintain and enhance in the interest of anglers, and hopefully there will be much more consultation to make up for the loss of direct representation.

So having observed this failure of democracy, continuing with that failed model is a recipe for just more of the same unfortunately. It could be tinkered with, but we will still have the problem of getting the right people to put up their hands, and unless licence holders actually get involved and vote, (so few vote currently) we would still see a system that is not truly representative (read not true democracy).

The question is - if we want to keep the democracy, how do we do so considering the above problems?

So Fraser, I hope you are wrong, a lot will depend on the 'good faith' of the new councilors in the new system.



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Re: Grim Future Ahead

Post by Dave » Wed May 05, 2021 1:42 pm

Steve we will not be able to keep it as a democracy when half of the councillors are Government appointees, particularly the F&G NZ chair who will have a casting vote as all chairmen do. Think back to when the Minister turned down a licence fee increase to try and reduce the amount of money F&G had to fight for environmental issues. This sort of thing could easily happen in the future with the proposed structure meaning F&G would have to do what the government wanted it to or the councillors would be replaced.
Dave



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