30 Apr 2009

Ministry's restructuring plan could mean job cuts

6:21 pm on 30 April 2009

Almost 30 jobs could be cut at the Ministry of Fisheries under a restructuring plan.

The Ministry has announced 29 management positions could go under the plan, which it says would save up to half a million dollars a year.

The positions likely to be affected will be in Wellington, Auckland, Napier and Nelson.

The Ministry's chief executive Wayne McNee says the number of surveillance and investigator roles and their locations would not change.

He says the restructuring is only a proposal and feedback will be sought from staff and unions.

The Public Service Association says it fears the restructuring would mean the Ministry would engage less with stakeholders such as Maori over customary fishing rights.

It says it would also be likely to lead to a reduction in service, which would concern all stakeholders.

Bureaucracy-cutting move hailed

Commercial fishers say they approve the Government's plans for less bureaucracy in the industry.

At the Federation of Commercial Fishermen's annual general meeting on Thursday, the fisheries minister, Phil Heatley said that in the past there had been too many high level meetings and not enough progress had been made.

Federation president Doug Saunders-Loader says the industry supports less bureaucracy.

He says fishers want to participate in discussions on a practical level but don't want to be at endless meetings.