Advice note Feb 2010


There have been a numerous enquiries in recent months as to the interpretation of the measured length of vessels used by Fishing Tour Operators.

Recent discussions the Association has had with N T Police Marine Branch raised this issue and they have provided the following documents below

(1) Guidance notes in regards to survey exempt vessels below 6.2 metres which they would like to see all vessels carry or comply with.

(2) Measured Length USL code 2009.this details compliance dates requirements etc and we urge all those affected to read carefully.

Some issues that a number of guides are currently ignoring relate to Survey
Unfortunately not being aware of the guidelines is no defense if caught, again we urge all FTO’s to be aware of any restrictions for surveyed vessels under 7 metres and unsurveyed vessels especially in relation to distances from land.

To date it appears that some of these issues have not been actively enforced; this could also impact on your Insurances if there is a claim in one form or another.

The Marine and Fisheries Enforcement Unit wish to convey to all FTO”S that there primary concern is Safety for everyone and urge anyone who wishes to contact them, on any matter to call 08 89220810

Presidents report February 2010

Dear Members

There have been a number of changes in the association’s makeup for 2010.

Lloyd Brown has stepped aside from his position as Executive Officer, Lloyd has been in the Executive role since the NTGFIA’s inception, he has played a pivotal role in determining its position in relation to the many and varied issues Guides are experiencing on a day by basis, Lloyd with his history in fisheries was responsible for the drafting of our Management goals for the future, some of these aims have been achieved, others are in the process of being implemented.

Lloyd has decided to pursue his Phd at Charles Darwin University, we wish him the very best in his endeavours, and sincerely thank him for his support.

There are a number of positions in the makeup of the committee that has changed, additionally we have new members that broaden the committee’s decision making across all aspects of FTO activities.
The new members are Michael Walsh, Shaun Uden, and Steve Compain.

The executive officer’s role has been taken by Graeme Williams in the interim, the committee has unanimously supported this, as Graeme’s experience as President for three years, his respect within the industry and his involvement with highly sensitive issues such as the Blue mud Bay working group and the Steering committee implementing the Governments white paper for FTO’S. Is seen as invaluable

Graeme has stepped down from the Presidents position and will continue in the executive officer’s role till the end of June 2010,the association will advertise and fill this position before the end of the financial year 2010.

In 2009 the association received a once only grant of $20,000 to continue negotiations with the Blue Mud Bay, this grant is primarily to fund additional costs i.e airfares etc in the process of negotiations, the government has announced an extension of the Status Quo to November 2010 in all NLC areas and to April 2010 for the Tiwi Islands.

The Association sees 2010 as a year of change, the steering committee overseeing the implementation of the Governments working paper on the future of FTO activities, the introduction of online returns, and the broadening of accessible areas are those that will change, issue’s such as Sector Management of fishing grounds, professional closures, license limitations, business license changes etc are all on the horizon.

The committee is acting on the advice of all respondents to the government’s survey, within the steering committee parameters

FTO’S should note that the general apathy within our industry to returning this questionnaire which has been the most significant document to our future operations was very dissapointing, only 19 completed documents were returned and the association has to work now with a less then broad number of responses to a wide raft of issues

A number of Guides have indicated that they never received this questionare, we have been diligent in advising all recipients by advertisement and email that this was pending, Fisheries have also guaranteed that every licensed operator as of August 2009 was forwarded the relevant document

FTO’s should at least know that the committee and its executive have a broad enough basis to agree or not agree to these issues, please note that position can be viewed on the web site under Hot topics

The Executive Officer’s Contact details are Mobile 0412481592.. 08 89456658

Finally the Committee wish everyone a great 2010.

Rob Marchant
Chairman NTGFIA