Houston wants forestry staff

Houston council is lobbying for more staff in the Houston Ministry of Forests office, and sent a letter to Victoria early-March.

Houston council is lobbying for more staff in the Houston Ministry of Forests office.

Mayor Shane Brienen sent a letter March 6 to the Executive Director of the Integrated Resource Operations Division of the Government of BC, Mary Sue Maloughney.

In the letter, Brienen said the Compliance & Enforcement (C&E) staff in Houston has dropped from five people to one since 2003.

“Houston has the largest harvesting operations in northwest BC, and while our licencees continue to operate within their legislative framework, we feel that retaining and increasing C&E staff in the Houston office would be a benefit to the Province and our community.”

Brienen said the District views the centralization of C&E staff away from the majority of the timber harvest area seems contrary to the mandate of the C&E Branch.

“The District of Houston would like a firm and long-term commitment from the Ministry and C&E Branch to retain the current C&E staffing levels in the Houston office,” he said.

“Additionally, please outline any plans to replace the staff the community has lost since 2003.”

The letter was sent to Victoria March 6.