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Halibut Advisory Board (HAB) terms of reference


The Halibut Advisory Board (HAB) provides a forum for communication between the halibut industry and Fisheries and Oceans Canada. HAB provides wide ranging advice to the Department to assist in the overall planning, management and enforcement of the Canadian halibut fishery. In particular, HAB will:

  1. advise on changes to the annual management plan for the halibut fishery;
  2. advise on long term policy directions for the halibut fishery and fishery management in general;
  3. communicate industry concerns and information to Fisheries and Oceans Canada and disseminate information from the Department back to the halibut industry;
  4. provide advice on financial arrangements and budgeting issues associated with funds contributed by halibut fishers to Fisheries and Oceans Canada for the management, monitoring and enforcement of the halibut fishery;
  5. advise Fisheries and Oceans Canada on monitoring and enforcement issues and regulations and support the Department in the prosecution of cases involving halibut violations;
  6. advise the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans on actions to take against halibut fishers caught violating rules and regulations in the halibut fishery;
  7. provide Canadian halibut industry representation at the annual meeting of the International Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC) and, where necessary, provide advice to Canadian IPHC Commissioners; and
  8. advise, assist and provide information to the IPHC on biological research and other issues, where necessary


  1. Fisheries and Oceans Canada will try to ensure that participants represent a broad cross section of the halibut industry;
  2. advisors include halibut vessel owner representatives and appointed representatives as selected
    by Fisheries and Oceans Canada to represent native, union, processing, recreational fishing, Provincial Government, IPHC, and other interests;
  3. the term of the HAB is two (2) years;
  4. halibut licence holders will select HAB licence holder representatives through a voting process;
  5. the number of votes required to become a licence holder representative is twenty (20);
  6. individuals or associations can appoint a HAB licence holders representative for each twenty (20) votes received (i.e. 40 votes results in 2 representatives);
  7. halibut licence holder selection must be submitted by the date specified;
  8. halibut licence holder selections received after the specified date will not be included;
  9. after the specified date, licence holders which selected an individual or association receiving at least twenty (20) votes will not be allowed to change their selections;
  10. individuals or associations wishing to elect a representative or additional representative to HAB after the specified date, and acquiring enough written selections from licence holders that have not already voted for an elected licence holder representative, may apply to Fisheries and Oceans Canada and HAB to be added to the HAB committee for the remainder of the current term;
  11. at least 50% of the halibut licence holders must participate in the selection process for the results to be accepted and a new HAB established;
  12. if less than 50% of the halibut licence holders participate in the selection process then the current HAB will remain in place until the 50% participation level has been achieved;
  13. each Advisor will identify an Alternate, who can attend meetings, but only participate if the Advisor is absent;
  14. advisors and Alternates are responsible for providing written confirmation to Fisheries and Oceans Canada of their position as representative of a specified organization, association, or group of halibut licence holders;
  15. the Halibut Coordinator or an individual chosen by HAB will chair the HAB meetings; and
  16. Fisheries and Oceans Canada staff will attend as appropriate


  1. HAB will meet approximately five (5) times a year for one to two days each - other meeting dates can be called by the Chairperson as deemed necessary;
  2. where possible, meeting dates will be established at the beginning of the year;
  3. an agenda and available relevant information will be prepared by the Chair and circulated at least ten (10) days prior to each meeting;
  4. feedback on the agenda and confirmation of attendance by Advisors or Alternates should be provided to the Chairperson prior to the meeting date;
  5. written minutes, action items and records of attendance will be prepared following each HAB meeting and sent to all Advisors – minutes should identify organizational and individual votes by issue and include recommendations and supporting rationale as well as consenting and dissenting arguments on issues where consensus was not achieved;
  6. all Advisors can participate in the discussion and provide positions on all issues;
  7. advisors positions or votes will not be weighed by the number of licence holders they represent;
  8. minutes from the previous HAB meeting will be adopted at the start of the next HAB meeting;
  9. advisors are responsible for ensuring that those they represent are kept informed and consulted so that their views may be brought back for HAB's consideration;
  10. if an Advisor can not attend a meeting, they will be responsible for ensuring that their Alternate attends in their place and is fully briefed on all issues prior the meeting;
  11. HAB meetings will be open to the public and observers may attend but may only participate through an Advisor or with the permission of the Chair;
  12. when required, some time will be set aside at each meeting to allow observers to comment or ask questions;
  13. HAB may appoint sub-committees to examine and report back on specific tasks as deemed appropriate;
  14. Fisheries and Oceans Canada, the Chair, or HAB may invite other individuals to participate in HAB discussion when appropriate; and
  15. Elected Advisors will have their meeting travel, meal and accommodation expenses reimbursed from contributions received from licence holders through cost recovery contributions, while appointed representatives will attend at their own expense
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