Anglers and hunters strongly urged to vote with Fish & Game polls open

Anglers and hunters are being urged to “make time now” to vote in Fish & Game’s elections – with a warning that choosing the best councillors to represent them has never been more important.

The polls are now open in Fish & Game’s elections to select councillors to represent the interests of licenceholders, anglers and hunters, in each of the organisation’s 12 regions around the country.

Fish & Game New Zealand Chairman Lindsay Lyons says that it’s crucial that people who are passionate and motivated about their hunting and fishing are elected to these regional councils.

“Fish & Game not only looks after the interests of anglers and hunters through the management of sports fishing and game bird resources, it’s now an important watchdog and a hard-nosed battler over issues such as water quality, pollution and access to the outdoors.

 “Finding people with the right talents and motivation is especially important in view of the some of the challenges just over the horizon.

 “Right now, trout and salmon are facing a very serious threat from new legislation just introduced to Parliament.

“The Indigenous Freshwater Fish Amendment Bill aims to provide better protection for indigenous fish such as galaxids, whitebait and eels, which we support, but poses a clear and alarming threat to trout and angling.

Perhaps most significant and concerning, it allows trout and salmon to be removed from particular rivers and lakes, even if they are significant trout and salmon fisheries, Mr Lyons says.

“We urge all anglers and hunters to get up to speed on this bill by visiting our website and from a link on the front page, reading the information we’ve posted.”

Mr Lyons says the Bill and the threats it contains is simply one more good reason for licenceholders to exercise their vote in the elections, so that the councils are in the best possible shape for the challenges ahead.

“Please vote – either using the voting packs which have been sent out to all eligible licenceholders in the mail or online – which you can do immediately after reading this.”

Fish & Game is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to speaking out and acting on environmental issues, and for that to continue we need robust councils and active forthright councillors, Mr Lyons says.

“Please do your bit to put them there.” 

For voting information:

To see candidates for each region click here

Key Election Dates

September 20 – NZ Post began distributing voter packs. Online voting began.

October 12 – Voting closes at 5pm

October 16 – Postal votes close.  The official results are produced and candidates advised.

October 20 – Official declaration and public notice of results published in regional daily newspapers

October 31 – Elected members take office