Redlands gets two extra fisheries officers

GRADUATION: District fisheries officer Matt Davidson and Redlands MP Kim Richards, with fisheries recruits Brendan Burmeister and Paul Gibson.
GRADUATION: District fisheries officer Matt Davidson and Redlands MP Kim Richards, with fisheries recruits Brendan Burmeister and Paul Gibson.

TWO fisheries compliance officers are heading to their post in the Redlands after graduating recently.

Redlands MP Kim Richards said the two were among 21 officers recruited last year as part of a $20 million fisheries strategy announced by the Queensland government last year.

“For the new graduates, today marks the culmination of an 11-month intensive training program,” Ms Richards said.

Ms Richards said the new officers would ensure fisheries resources remained sustainable for the future.

“Black marketing of fisheries resources undermines the viability of commercial and recreational fishing, and the competitiveness of legitimate seafood processors and buyers,” she said.

“Ultimately it also affects Queensland’s reputation as a producer of high quality seafood.”

Fisheries Minister Mark Furner said the graduation coincided with the introduction of the Fisheries (Sustainable Fisheries Strategy) Amendment Bill 2018.

“This bill will modernise our fisheries laws and bring fisheries management in line with world’s best practice,” Mr Furner said.

“The community has been calling for change to fisheries legislation for many years and the proposed changes will bring Queensland in line with other Australian fisheries management agencies.

“Stronger compliance powers for fisheries officers and penalties for offenders are aimed squarely at fishers operating illegally by selling seafood on the black market.

“The fisheries bill will give our compliance officers the tools they need to do their jobs effectively.”