The MP for Bonavista-Burin-Trinity is joining those expressing disappointment in a recent federal government decision to expropriate 25 percent of Clearwater’s surf clam quota to Nova Scotia.
Clearwater employs hundreds of people full-time, year-round at its Grand Bank plant processing surf clam. The resource is worth $100 million dollars to the province according to provincial Fisheries Minister Gerry Byrne.
MP Churence Rogers says in the last two months he’s met with the Town of Grand Bank, Clearwater Seafoods, area residents, Indigenous groups and businesses vying to become the new license holder. His goal he says, was to do whatever he could to keep jobs in Grand Bank and ont the Burin Peninsula and minimuze any impact the cut would have on the people in the region. Rogers says he presented many options to the Minister Dominic LeBlanc and was disappointed to hear none of those options were selected.
NEWS RELEASE: MP Churence Rogers Reaction to DFO Arctic Surf Clam Decision pic.twitter.com/qfNd1h1uhi
— Churence Rogers, M.P. (@ChurenceRogers) February 23, 2018
Five Nations Clam Company will partner with Nova Scotia-based Premium Seafoods to harvest, process and market the quota. Rogers would not comment on reports indicating that Premier Seafoods, which will be processing and marketing the quota, is owned by a Nova Scotia Liberal MP.
Rogers says it is unclear at this time what Clearwater’s future direction will be, but the company also has access to other species and he has been speaking to Minister LeBlanc who has pledged to look at other species and opportunities for the people of the Burin Peninsula.
PC Leadership Candidate says Liberals ‘Confiscating’ Resource
Provincial PC Leadership candidate Tony Wakeham is expressing dismay with Ottawa’s decision to expropriate 25 percent of the surf clam quota to Nova Scotia.
Wakeham says the federal Liberals chose to “blatantly ignore” the adjacency principle when amending the Fisheries Act, and now they’ve “confiscated” the very resource that the province’s rural communities rely on for survival.
Wakeham calls the decision baffling and he says taking the quota from the people of the Burin Peninsula is the same as “taking the food directly off their tables”.