NOTO Successfully Lobbies for LUP, BMA and Other Crown Resource Fees to be Waived for 2020
As some of you may know, NOTO sat on the MNRF’s Hunting, Fishing and Resource-Based Tourism advisory committee. There were also a number of tourist operators on this call who represented the industry very well and helped to bring light to the impacts of COVID-19 on our sector.
Participation on this committee allowed the Minister to hear directly from stakeholders on how the pandemic has affected these sectors and share ideas to help with recovery. Our work through this committee and additional direct discussions with the Minister’s office staff have proven fruitful.
On July 16th, I received a call from the Minister himself letting me know that he is moving ahead with one of the requests we made in March at the onset of this pandemic. It was clear from our discussion that the Minister truly understands the devastating situation our sector is in and wants to help through his Ministry.
Minister Yakabuski will be announcing the waiving of fees for 2020 for resource-based tourism operators. This includes bear operator fees, baitfish operators fees and commercial outpost camp land use fees for the 2020 calendar year. More details will be released in the official announcement from the Minister next week.
The Minister has also committed to working closely with Minister MacLeod to promote hunting, fishing and resource-based tourism in Ontario as everyone shifts their marketing efforts to the domestic market.
NOTO would like to send a heartfelt thank you to Minister Yakabuski on behalf of operators across the Province for listening to our industry’s concerns and for his hard work in getting operators some financial support to help them get through these difficult times. We look forward to further discussions on how his Ministry and the Provincial Government as a whole can help our sector through the devastating affects of this unprecedented situation.
I know that this does not provide relief for all of our sector but it is a welcomed first step. We will continue to advocate for meaningful financial assistance for all operators at both the Provincial and Federal levels.
Laurie, Executive Director of NOTO