Farm/riparian interface planning process discussed

Due to inclement (cold) weather there was a telephone conference rather than a meeting for the Jan. 12 Horsefly River Roundtable.

Due to inclement (cold) weather there was a telephone conference rather than a meeting for the Jan. 12 Horsefly River Roundtable.

Lee Hesketh reported on some projects currently waiting for funding to go ahead, specifically on Moffat Creek near the Pearson’s/Meadowbrook ranches, Rolf’s on the 108 Road, and on Choate Creek on the Beaver Valley Road.

The Farmland Riparian Interface Stewardship Program (FRISP) has developed a group planning concept process which includes all local land owners, Ministry of Transport, the Roundtable, the Northern Shuswap Tribal Council, coming together to reach an implementation plan.

This process would be 75 per cent funded with the other 25 per cent being up to the local people and organizations, possibly “in kind” labour.

If the current funding applications are approved, by April the prescriptions (plans for implementation) would be drawn up, and work completed in summer.

Hesketh also discussed the dangerous cut banks on the Mitchell Bay Road as a future project.

Hesketh is extremely desirous to have an informational meeting in Horsefly, possibly at the community hall some time in March to discuss environmental farm planning for individual small farms and ranches while funding is still available.

As soon as a date is set, posters will be posted, and local people may be contacted by phone.

The walkway to the river’s edge near the bridge in Horsefly was discussed in small part.

The original plan was to have aluminum sections that could be joined together to reach the water.

These would be installed after high water, and removed before winter.

ethod has been put forward, which would involve embedding concrete slabs at ground level along the natural contour of the gravel bar in summer.

They would be permanent, and only require the odd sweeping of gravel for maintenance.  We are waiting for DFO approval of this concept.

The Salmon Festival was discussed briefly.

Knowing the difficulty of assembling volunteers to have a powwow, the roundtable will be drafting a letter to NSTQ (Northern Secwepemc te Qelmucw) inviting their participation in the festival.

The members of the roundtable all agree First Nations participation makes the festival a far better event.

If we start planning now, the possibility for success is greater.

There was a report given on the Fraser Salmon and Watershed Conference, which was attended by several roundtable members including Andrew Meshue, Maureen LeBourdais, Sue Hemphill and Tracy Bond.

We are proud to report that both Hemphill and Bond received awards of $2,500 for their work and commitment to stewardship.

Hemphill will be donating her award to Scout Island, while Tracy will donate $2,000 to the Baker Creek Society, and $500 to the Horsefly River Roundtable. Congratulations, people!

Andrew suggested if Hesketh receives funding, NSTC could send out some of their fisheries technicians to work on the grounds.

It is also suggested we do a public awareness on the bass problem in spring at the beginning of fishing season to once again remind people why bass are a problem.

Information would also be provided on  what to do if you catch an incidental bass; who to contact, etc.

 

The next meeting of the roundtable will take place at the Horsefly library on Feb.16.