BC Liberal Candidate – Kootenay East
As the candidate to replace retiring Bill Bennett as MLA, I want the people of Kootenay East to know where I stand on the grizzly bear hunt.
The NDP recently announced they want to ban grizzly bear hunting. I support science-based decisions when it comes to wildlife issues.
Government just published a thorough study of grizzly bear populations in BC (http://dx.plos.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0082757) and populations are healthy in many regions, including the Kootenay Region.
As long as populations can support a hunt, politicians should stay out of it. I know fathers and grandfathers who want to take a son or grandson out for a bear hunt. As long as we have healthy populations, the grizzly bear hunt should continue.
The population must be managed to control numbers and our choice is a hunt or to have Conservation Officers remove excess bears. I think the choice is clear.
As for the NDP, they know the grizzly bear hunt is generally supported in rural B.C. and they know the evidence supports a hunt. With their decision to oppose hunting for political reasons, they are revealing their urban bias. The NDP is actually writing off rural B.C.
If I am elected in May, 2017, my job will be to represent the rural values that my family has lived in the east Kootenay for five generations.