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Finfish Aquaculture Industry Advisory Panel (FAIAP)
Terms of Reference

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Draft 3 - March 2007

Background | Purpose | Guiding Principles | Structure | Membership
Roles and Responsibilities | Procedures | Funding | Review/Evaluation

Background

Finfish aquaculture is one of the most challenging areas for the DFO – Pacific Region to manage, and that challenge is made greater by a lack of regular communication between the industry and DFO. The Department and industry require a formal consultation process to ensure regular communications on major policy, research and regulatory issues. An aquaculture industry advisory process would be a similar to those already in place for commercial and recreational harvesters, such as the Commercial Salmon Advisory Board and Sport Fishery Advisory Board. Establishing a similar advisory process is compatible with the Departments view of aquaculture as a legitimate user of the marine resource. Therefore it is proposed that a Finfish Aquaculture Industry Advisory Panel (FAIAP) is established by Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO), Pacific Region.

Purpose

The FAIAP is being established by DFO to improve communication between the finfish aquaculture industry and DFO and provide a mechanism for the industry to provide formal advice to the Department on operational and policy related decisions related to finfish aquaculture in the Pacific Region. It is expected that this panel will operate in parallel with the Shellfish Aquaculture Industry Advisory Panel (SAIAP), and both panels will form the basis for an integrated advisory structure that includes other non-industry perspectives in the near future.

Guiding Principles

Transparent:
There should be transparency throughout the advisory process based on open lines of communication and the provision of timely, accurate, accessible, clear and objective information. This information should be available to all participants in the advisory process on an equal basis. Organizers should provide access to agendas and information needed as a starting point for informed discussion well in advance of meetings. In addition, this information will be posted to a public website to ensure accountability to all Canadians.
Accountable:
Participants who are representatives of a constituency are expected to bring to the discussions the general views, knowledge and experience of those they represent, and bring back an awareness and understanding to their constituencies about deliberations of the consultation activity and reasons for decisions taken. All participants share accountability for the success of the process. The Department is accountable to participants for explaining how their advice/input was used and why and how decisions are taken.
Inclusive Representation:
Representation on the advisory panel should relate to the mandate and function of the panel, be fairly balanced and reflect a broad range of interests in the finfish aquaculture industry.
Effective:
All participants should be satisfied that the advisory process can achieve the goals of the mandate. This does not mean that participants will always agree with the final advice, outcome or recommendation. Processes must be cost-effective and set and respect realistic timeframes.
Efficient:
The size of the advisory panel must be kept to a number that facilitates consensus-based discussion. Wherever possible, links to other departmental consultative processes will be made to realize efficiencies in consultation.

Structure

  • One regional FAIAP
    • To work in parallel with a regional Shellfish Aquaculture Industry Advisory Panel (SAIAP).
    • The FAIAP and SAIAP will form the basis for an integrated multi-sectoral Pacific Aquaculture Advisory Committee (PAAC) that will include non-industry partners including First Nations. It is expected that the PAAC would be developed over the next two years.

Membership

Selective membership drawn from:

  • BC Salmon Farmers Association-Board of Directors

Industry membership may be amended should there be significant changes to the major industry operators.

1 ex-officio representative from:

  • Province of BC

DFO participation:

  • Director, Aquaculture Management as Chair and Facilitator.
  • Regional Director, Fisheries and Aquaculture Management (as needed)
  • Senior representation ( e.g. Manager, HM) from Oceans Habitat and Enhancement Branch
  • Director, Marine Ecosystem and Aquaculture Division, Science Branch
  • Communications Branch Representative
  • FAM – AMD Finfish Aquaculture Policy Officer

Additional DFO representation will be on an as required basis depending on the issues to be discussed.

Roles and Responsibilities

DFO-appointed Chair / Facilitator:

  • Calls meetings
  • Develops the agenda in consultation with the Panel and distributes it well in advance of meetings.
  • Coordinates attendance of participants and meeting venues
  • Enforces the panel charter
  • Mitigates conflict
  • Helps to summarize and focus discussion
  • Provide services of a recorder.

DFO Participants

  • Bring forward government and departmental policies and positions related to finfish aquaculture
  • Highlight DFO research initiatives and findings
  • Discuss regulatory issues, objectives and practices

ALL Participants:

  • Represent information accurately and appropriately, consult with their sectors/organizations, and keep their sectors/organizations informed of the information and issues discussed at FAIAP meetings, securing the support of their sectors/organizations for issues discussed.
  • Bring forward issues of concern or interest, as it pertains to the mandate of the group.
  • Respect the Panel Charter by developing guidelines for enforcing the charter.

Procedures

Timeline:

The FAIAP will meet three times per year as agreed by the parties.

Each meeting will be developed to address the most pertinent issues for that time period and provide an opportunity to discuss potential issues in the upcoming time period.

Funding

DFO will provide funding to cover administration and logistical costs (such as document distribution, conference calls, meeting rooms). Participants will be responsible for paying for travel to attend to the meeting in person or may choose to participate by conference call.

Review/Evaluation

After two meetings have been held, a review of the effectiveness of this committee should take place to ensure the best use of resources. The review will consist of a questionnaire sent to all participants for their completion.

PANEL CHARTER: (see Appendix A)

ROLE OF FACILITATOR: (see Appendix B)