Petition: Wildlife Allocation in B.C.
Wildlife Allocation Policy Petition - CLICK HERE TO SIGN!
BCWF has started a petition to urge the Government of B.C. to rescind their recent decision on Wildlife Allocation, which will result in lost hunting opportunities for our province's resident hunters.
The petition calls on the Government of B.C. to overturn the decision to change the Wildlife Harvest Allocation Policy which gives a larger share of hunting permits to BC guide outfitters and a smaller share of hunting permits to BC resident hunters.
The petition is available at the following link: Wildlife Harvest Allocation Policy Petition, and will be submitted to the B.C. Legislature.
The following document illustrates the evolution of wildlife allocation in BC by region, species, and the split between resident hunters and guide outfitters:
News Release: Sweeping changes to B.C.’s wildlife allocations could result in 5,000 fewer hunting permits going to residents
December 10th, 2014
Sweeping changes to B.C.’s Wildlife Allocation Policy proposed by the Guide-Outfitters Association of B.C. would dramatically reduce residents’ access to wild game and increase the number of permits sold to foreign big game trophy hunters, according to the B.C. Wildlife Federation (BCWF). This proposed change could result in 5,000 fewer hunting permits going to B.C. residents.
Most jurisdictions across North America give foreign hunters 5-10 percent of the harvestable surplus of wildlife. The changes proposed by the Guide-Outfitters Association of B.C., which represents 210 outfitters who have exclusive rights to guide trophy hunters, would give foreign hunters up to 40 percent of specific game species such as mountain sheep, goat and bear, and up to 25 percent of moose and elk.
In 2007 a new Wildlife Allocation Policy was established in B.C. in an attempt to fairly determine the number of hunting permits allocated, which gave foreign hunters the best share of the available hunting permits. Even then, the Guide Outfitters Association of B.C. started vigorously lobbying the government to amend or scrap the new wildlife policy.
“Proposed changes to the Wildlife Allocation Policy are inconsistent with standard practices in otherjurisdictions across Canada and in the United States,” said George Wilson, President of the B.C. Wildlife Federation, which represents 45,000 conservationists. “There is no justification for these changes and they are not supported by B.C.’s resident hunters.”
Over the last 10 years, the number of B.C. hunters has grown by 20 percent, increasing from 84,000 to over 102,000. Over the same period, the number of foreign trophy hunters coming to B.C. has dropped from 6,500 to 4,500, a decline of 30 percent.
Hunting has become increasingly popular in B.C. as more families shyaway from industrially produced meats in favour of organic wild game. This sustainable food movement is particularly popular in northern communities, central B.C. and even the Lower Mainland where people are depending on hunting to fill their freezers and feed their families.
B.C. resident hunters spend over $230 million a year in local communities on hunting related activities and contribute $9 million a year towards conservation work through license fees. Resident hunters also contribute through donations to conservation organizations such as The Nature Trust, and Ducks Unlimited as well as volunteer for conservation activities. B.C. Wildlife Federation members alone dedicate more than 300,000 hours annually to fish, wildlife and habitat conservation projects across the province.
Moose is the most sought after species by B.C.’s resident hunters. In many areas, demand exceeds supply and hunters are placed on a Limited Entry Hunt (LEH) lottery to ensure sustainability. Approximately 70,000 BC hunters apply for 13,000 LEH permits each year, meaning only 1 in 5 hunters get to hunt moose annually. Foreign hunters do not need to apply for a LEH permit, and can hunt annually, taking moose from approximately 3,000 B.C. hunters each year. The proposed changes would see even more British Columbians go without an opportunity to hunt moose.
“B.C. residents who depend on hunting to help sustain their families should be supported by provincial government policy,” said Jesse Zeman, a BCWF director, who hunts with his whole family. “The overriding priority for all hunters is conservation, ensuring there is enough game available for First Nations, and then fulfilling the hunting needs of B.C. families. Any changes to the Wildlife Allocation Policyshould meet the needs of the majority of British Columbians who enjoy the outdoors, spend time with friends and family, and hunt for food.”
Over the past two decades, there has been a steady erosion of hunting permits available to B.C. resident hunters in favour of foreign hunters. For example, non-resident hunting permits for moose in the Kootenay Region have gone from 6 percent in 1991 to 21 percent in 2012, leaving hundreds of Kootenay residents without the opportunity to hunt moose.
The B.C. Wildlife Federation is calling on the BC government to fairly legislate wildlife allocations. The organization does not support giving away more than 10 percent for moose and elk, and 25 percent of mountain goat, sheep, and bears to foreign trophy hunters. Ironically, this gives non-resident hunters the best deal in North America. Several jurisdictions across North America have already set wildlife allocation in law. Saskatchewan limits non-resident moose hunters to 4 percent of the harvestable surplus. Alberta sets non-resident allocations between 2-7 percent with a maximum of 10 percent. Washington State has limited non-resident wildlife allocations to approximately 5 percent.
“Resident hunters firmly believe any policy changes should reflect the best interests of the majority of British Columbians who depend on hunting as a sustainable, healthy food source,” said BCWF President George Wilson. “Our organization is committed to working with the government to protect wildlife and ensure equitable distribution of this resource.”
The following document contains figures and statistics that show the significant economic impacts of resident hunting in B.C.:
BCWF BC Resident Hunter Fact Sheet [PDF]
The BCWF is British Columbia's largest and oldest conservation organization with over 45,000 members passionately committed to protecting, enhancing and promoting the wise use of the environment for the benefit of present and future generations. Visit www.bcwf.bc.ca for more information.
For more information on the province’s Wildlife Harvest Allocation Policy, visit http://www.env.gov.bc.ca/fw/wildlife/harvest_alloc/
Frequently Asked Questions: Registering Your Outdoor Recreational Vehicle (ORV)
Please see below for answers on some of the most common questions BCWF Members have had about our province's new ORV regulations and the process of registering a vehicle with ICBC. It is important for everyone going through the registration process to be clear on what is and is not required as part of the new policy.
Links to additional information and resources have also been provided below.
Q: I understand I am legally required to register my ORV - is this a one-time process?
ORV owners are only required by law to register their vehicle once. The registration process can be completed at any ICBC dealer, and consists of a $48 fee that includes a plate for the vehicle. Please note that issuing a plate does not mean that insurance is required for the ORV (see next question). ORVs operated solely on private property are not required to be registered.
Q: Am I required to purchase yearly ICBC insurance for my ORV?
A: No, as long as you are not accessing public roads. Please note that you are still required to have third-party liability insurance.
Annual vehicle licenses and insurance, which fall under the Motor Vehicle Act and are unchanged with the new ORV regulations, are only required for ORV riders who choose to access designated public roads / highway crossings or portions of the right-of-way. A yearly vehicle license is NOT required to operate an ORV on Forest Service Roads, which are not considered public roads.
Q: Have any of the vehicle insurance or third-party liability insurance requirements changed under the new regulations?
The insurance requirements for operation of an ORV in B.C. have not changed with the new regulations. Third-party liability insurance is required for travel on Forest Service Roads, and is recommended for those operating an ATV on Crown land (your BCWF Membership includes this type of insurance coverage while you are engaged in hunting and fishing activities).
Q: Am I required to pay Provincial Sales Tax (PST) on my ORV if I have not done so already?
A: If you purchased your ORV on or after July 1, 2010 and did not pay tax, the answer is yes.
If you purchased the ORV in B.C., brought it into B.C., or received an ORV as a gift, on or after July 1, 2010 and did not pay tax, you will be required to pay the applicable sales tax at the time of registration, unless a specific exemption applies. If the ORV was purchased prior to July 1, 2010, the ORV can be registered under the ORV Act without sales tax documentation.
The Province of B.C. recently distributed a “Provincial Sales Tax Notice” that includes all of the guidelines and details for paying the tax – the document is available by clicking here.
Q: What documentation will I need to provide when registering my ORV?
A: In order to register your ORV, you will need to prove ownership of the vehicle. At least one of the following documents will need to be provided to ICBC at the time of registration:
- A New Vehicle Information Statement or a Certificate of Origin if purchased new, but never registered previously;
- A Bill of Sale;
- A Transfer Tax Form (APV9T) signed by seller – Transfer Tax forms are widely available from any Autoplan broker;
- A completed B. C. Consumer Taxation Branch Gift of Vehicle Form (FIN 319);
- For ORV’s imported into B.C. from another Canadian jurisdiction, the previous registration documents;
- For ORVs imported from the U.S., a Title Certificate; Form 1 or B15 Accounting Document; OR
- In the absence of the above, a sworn statutory declaration (MV1484 - available here) will be required with information about how the person came into possession of the off road vehicle and attempts to get the one or more of the other documentation.
Information and Resources
The following resources will provide detailed information on the new ORV registration process and regulations:
ICBC - Offroad Vehicle Registration: This document from ICBC contains detailed information on the registration process.
ORV Registration and Licensing Requirements: This document features a chart that illustrates the registration and insurance requirements for ORVs under the new Offroad Vehicle Act.
Provincial Sales Tax - Notice to Offroad Vehicle Owners - A notice from the Province of B.C. regarding how the Provincial Sales Tax Act applies to the new regulations.
ORV Ownership Declaration - The declaration form for ORV owners that are not able to obtain the necessary documents to prove ownership of their vehicle. Please note that the form must by notarized by a Notary Public, which usually costs between $20 and $30.
The BC Wildlife Federation is British Columbia's largest and oldest conservation organization. Our 40,000 members are passionately committed to protecting, enhancing and promoting the wise use of the environment for the benefit of present and future generations. Our volunteers and donors give generously of their time and finances to support to a wide range of wildlife conservation programs and projects. Join us today!