Tuesday, 24 February 2009
Dáil Eireann Debate
385. Deputy Michael Ring asked the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources the reason the fisheries board (details supplied) is charging an extortionate amount for a licence. [7237/09]
Licence duties for commercial salmon fishing are set by the Minister, on foot of an Order, the most recent being the Fisheries (Commercial Fishing Licences) (Alteration of Duties and Fees) Order 2007 (SI. No. 812 of 2007), approved by both Houses of the Oireachtas. These fees are uniform across all fisheries regions and are currently reviewed on an annual basis. There was no change in duties between 1988 and 2004, when increases were applied to account for movement in the Consumer Price Index in the intervening years.
In 2007, following cessation of mixed stock fisheries at sea and as part of a suite of conservation measures for the management of the wild salmon fishery, a salmon conservation component was applied to all commercial and recreational licences, the holders of which continue to harvest salmon. This component represents 50% of the licence fee collected. The income generated from this component is reinvested by the Fisheries Boards in the rehabilitation of wild salmon habitat and stocks throughout the country. For 2009 I decided not to increase the fees for any salmon fishing licence.
I am advised that certain waters around the country are designated as special tidal waters and draft net users are required to obtain a Special Draft Net Licence to fish these waters. Under the Rivers Owenmore and Owenduff (Tidal Waters) Order 1967 (SI No. 33 of 1967), the tidal waters of Owenmore and Owenduff are so designated and attract the licence fee referred to by the Deputy.
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