A local conservation group says the Province’s proposed wildlife management agency raises more questions than answers.
Wildsight’s John Bergenske is reacting to the promise the Liberals made last week to form and support a group of stakeholders that would be separate of government.
Bergenske wants to know if this is simply a new funding model or if management decisions are being handed over to a select group of hunters.
He says if its an attempt to provide more funding for wildlife programs then it should be supported.
However, on the other hand, if its an attempt by government to advocate responsibility to specific parties then people should be very concerned.
Kootenay East MLA Bill Bennett suggested that the agency would remove the politics from the issue and allow for better solutions.
Bergenske says they want to make sure wildlife management stays based in science.
He adds additional funding for research and habitat enhancement is welcome but taking management decisions away from scientists and giving it to a individuals representing one side of the issue is not.
The Wildsight Conservation Director suggests the general public should also have the ability to be part of the conservation.
Bergenske also questions if the agency would be aimed at enhancing wildlife or if it is an attempt to remove management responsibility from government, making it even more difficult for the public to hold government accountable.
The Liberals say if they are re-elected in May, they would put $5 million into the new agency and use up to $10 million dollars collected from annual hunter license revenue to sustain it.
– Josh Hoffman
– Wildsight Conservation Director John Bergenskee