Another extension sought on community forest negotiations

The Misty Isles Economic Development Society (MIEDS) has asked for another extension on its response to the community forest invitation, advising the ministry of forests it will be investigating options to secure up to 100 per cent of net revenues for Haida Gwaii.

MIEDS chair Douglas Daugert says it’s unfair and impractical for islanders to negotiate any further until the latest Timber Supply Review 9TSR) is made available. A similar notice was issued by the former MIEDS chair, but the TSR expected late 2018 has yet to be completed.

The current offer for a community forest would split revenue sharing 50/50 with BC Timber Sales for most of its annual cut.

“There are different ways of getting the other 50 per cent,” Daugert says. “Can they commit, say with the plowing, their 50 per cent back into island infrastructure? Daugert says.

“What we’re saying is we’d at least like to get the new Timber Supply Review long enough to analyze what we’ve been offered and kick the tires on this used car —have the chance to do our due diligence to see what this offer really is, and to see if there are other ways to do it with other groups and get more for the community while reducing risk.”

In a letter to the regional executive director of the province’s West Coast Natural Resource Region, Sharon Hadway, Daugert conveyed island communities’ concern with both the terms of the offer and the length of time the Haida Gwaii Management Council is taking to complete the TSR.

“We will also be having discussions with the Council of the Haida Nation to see if there is a mechanism that will allow the province to offer the tenure and have 100 per cent of the net revenues stay on Haida Gwaii. Sustainable logging as well as revenues and jobs remaining on Haida Gwaii, were key areas of public concern wit the existing offer, which is still unacceptable to the communities and general public.”

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