All posts by USFA

NSW State Titles – 2017

NSW State Championships
October 28/29th
Hosted by the Central Coast Sea Lions

As per the flyer, the Sea Lions are hosting the time honored USFA NSW State Championships, the event has been held for over 60 years and the trophies feature the names of many past and present champions and friends on them. The Championships will be held over two days and is a rock hop event.

 

2017 USFA Executive Committee

Underwater Skindivers & Fisherman's Association office bearers:

Office Person
President Peter Saunders
Vice President Bob McComb
Secretary Peter Walsh
Assistant Secretary Mel Brown
Treasurer Kevin Saw
Assistant Treasurer Lee Dalli
Membership Officer Lee Dalli
Accreditation, Insurance & Strategic Officer Peter Walsh
Sports Secretary Cohen Jones
Events Coordinator Alby Cooke
Webmaster & Social Media Sam Krywulycz
Information Officer Simon Horvath
   
Fundraising Officer Jason Montes De Oca
Grants Coordinator Vacant
Online Solutions Officer Nigel Sirisomphone
Historical Officer Mel Brown
Strategic Planning Officer Peter Walsh
Public Officer Mel Brown
Public Affairs Officer Peter Saunders
Safety & Education Officer Simon Trippe
Recognised Training Officer Simon Trippe
Spearfishing Records Officer Simon Trippe
Data & Research Officer Bob McComb
Endangered Species Officer Matthew Poulton
Environment Officer Matthew Poulton
Marine Advisory Councils Officer Oliver Wady
Marine Parks Liaison (Far North - Coffs) Ray Powell
Marine Parks Liaison (Far North - Byron Bay) Ray Powell
Marine Parks Liaison (North) Alby Cooke
Marine Parks Liaison (Central) Matthew Poulton
Marine Parks Liaison (South - Jervis Bay) Oliver Wady
Marine Parks Liaison (South - Batemans Bay) Ric Cumming
Members Liaison Officer Bob McComb
Recreational Fishing Alliance (RFA) Representative Matthew Poulton

2017 – Start of the year announcements

It is with much excitement that the USFA would like to announce that the NSW State Spearfishing titles will be held on the October long weekend in conjunction with the Tomakin Sporting Clubs Fishing Bonanza. The State Titles will be a one-day pairs event on the Sunday only and as with all USFA competitions full USFA membership will be required to fish. Pair’s events are becoming more popular in our region and this is the format favoured by our neighbouring countries and the format of our most esteemed competition with them. By incorporating this competition with the Tomakin Fishing Bonanza there is the opportunity to further promote this event, promote pairs competitions and spearfishing to the broader community. On the Saturday morning we also plan to run a spearfishing induction course and then encourage experienced divers to accompany the tyro’s on a dive. There will be incentives to participate in this.

It was decided at the USFA executive meeting last Thursday to keep the USFA membership fee at $90. This was achievable due to discounts on our insurance; the level of coverage still remains the same as when the premiums were higher.  The executive have worked hard with our insurance provider to create this policy and although some feel it is too expensive, we believe it represents good value and is the best currently available to spearo’s in Australia. As spear fishers in other states and territories become aware of this policy, we expect to increase our membership footprint outside of NSW as a result.

The USFA is the peak spearfishing body in NSW and has always advocated for spearfishing access and rights to all spearo’s, be they a member of the Association or not, this is always our default position. In order to improve communication it has been agreed that we should offer a ‘social membership’ to the USFA at nil cost. This is in the hope of improving communication, inwards and outwards, and also that more people will then see the value in taking up full membership with the USFA. This social membership will not have the voting rights, insurance or other benefits of full members, however as we are the strongest voice for all spearo’s in NSW in the legislative and regulatory process, we feel improving our relationship with all of our extended tribe is very important.

Thursday evening also saw the AGM held and the re-election of the entire executive to their previous positions. Two new executives to previously unfilled positions were filled by Bob McComb as Deputy Chair and Simon Horvath as Information Officer, this new influx of experience and enthusiasm is a deliberate attempt to improve consultation with members and stakeholders. Changes to our constitution are also being discussed at the executive currently; these can only be made with the mandate of the membership. All members will be given notice well in advance and we ask that you consider these and the intent of  any changes and vote accordingly.

“Where there is unity there is always victory” (Publilius Syrus).

The USFA’s Issues with the Hawkesbury Shelf Marine Bioregion Assessment

The NSW Government is inviting your comments on suggested management initiatives to enhance marine biodiversity in the Hawkesbury Shelf marine bioregion. Please note that the consultation period has been extended until Sunday 8th May 2016.

The Marine Estate Management Authority (MEMA) has created a  discussion paper where they describe eight suggested management initiatives in the Hawkesbury Shelf Marine Bioregion Assessment. The USFA agrees with most of these Initiatives except for Initiative 4 - Spatial Management.

Spatial management is basically another name for Lockouts. The USFA is opposed to lockouts as we believe there are better management strategies than total lockouts.

USFA's Matthew Poulton answers some questions on what the  Hawkesbury Shelf marine bioregion assessment created by the Marine Estate Management Authority (MEMA) means for spear fishers in NSW, Sydney, Newcastle & Wollongong.
The USFA’s Issues with the Hawkesbury Shelf Marine Bioregion Assessment
http://usfa.org.au/usfas-issues-hawkesbury-shelf-marine-bioregion-assessment/
A better picture showing the expanse of the region under assessment
The Hawkesbury Shelf marine bioregion under assessment

The Assessment has identified 15 main sites and 44 additional sites. The implications are that as many of these sites as possible will be locked up for good.  Continue reading The USFA’s Issues with the Hawkesbury Shelf Marine Bioregion Assessment