February 20, 2017
Council of BC Yacht Clubs & Marine Parks Forever report
The CBCYC continues to represent and Advocate for Boating on the BC Coast.
A few highlights from the last year:
Continued to define Boat havens on the coast and working to get these boat havens recognized by the various governing agencies holding jurisdiction. We want to keep these havens open and available for refuge and not blocked by commercial developments.
Continued reviewing development and water use license applications and intervening where it is felt there will be a negative impact on pleasure boating. Recently several fish farm plans have been modified as a result of these interventions. Currently working to block approval for an unlicensed marine railway and ship yard in Port Harvey off Johnston Strait.
Working on the derelict boat problem that plagues many ports and bays. Supporting derelict boat removal, but working on ways to achieve this without unreasonable taxes or licensing fees on boats.
Continued monitoring of the Debris control program.
Coordinating with other boating and outdoor advocacy groups.
Supporting other environmental and fish support groups.
Working with various government departments (all levels) on a variety of issues that affect pleasure boaters. Constantly reminding Government officials that the CBCYC is a strong representative of the boating community and encouraging them to consult with the CBCYC at every opportunity. Always a battle, but they have made some good headway in the last year.
The Marine Parks Forever Society (associated with the CBCYC but operating under a separate board and financing) continues to pursue its mandate facilitating the expansion/addition/improvement of Marine Parks. BC Parks has been grossly underfunded the last few years, with no capital expenditures budgeted and insufficient funds for even the most basic repairs or maintenance. A new Provincial budget is coming, with some promise of additional funding, and there is hope for some land purchase funds. The Marine Parks Forever Society is actively working to close a land purchase agreement for one of the privately held Harmony Islands (Jervis Inlet area) for addition to an existing park. They are also working on developing/expanding a marine park on Burgoyne Bay on Salt Spring Island, but this is going very slowly. Several years ago they successfully participated in a major land acquisition in the Octopus Islands/Granite bay area of Quadra.
Marine Parks Forever does not complete outright purchases, but rather works with other groups and the Government to put deals together. Marine Parks Forever Has a substantial capital fund that it draws on to help with the purchase cost.
Marine Parks Forever also has an active stern tie installation program – renewing old stern ties and installing new ones in many of the most popular anchorages. This program is going very slowly because BC Parks has no funding to install these stern ties even though the Society has purchased and supplied all materials.
Submitted by Alec Mackenzie