Details are not availabe yet but will be posted here:
|Irish Charter Skippers Association||
We received the information from Fáilte Ireland, that the COVID-19 Adaptation Fund will be launched Tuesday 18th August 2020.
Details are not availabe yet but will be posted here:
I am fully aware of the frustrations and concerns being felt by you. I have noted some of these concerns and would like to comment on them. Some members are looking to get back working as soon as possible and even earlier than the restrictions allow, so I take this opportunity to update you and ask you to be patient.
I have been working on the issue on getting our charter businesses up and running. At present we are restricted to do so, having regard to and abiding by the parameters laid down by the HSE and HPSC. These restrictions are governed by legislation and if we breach them, we could be fined or worse. Don't forget we are also licensed charter boats. I am thinking of the membership in general and I am also aware of the hardships that have befallen our members.
To update you and to remind you, phase 2 will come into play on 8th June and I am aware at the moment that we are severely restricted to 5 km from home and not much better on 8th June when 20 km will be allowed.
At the moment myself and Joe Lynch, our secretary, are drawing an SOP (standard operating procedure) document. This document, I believe will be demanded from us by the HSE should we wish to operate. The document will cover all the precautions we will take to abide by the guidelines laid down by the HSE asking them (the HSE) to take into account that we are operating a charter boat which we will have to address certain issues as to how we can best protect our passengers.This SOP document will cover all issues and hopefully help to get us back to work. I think it is important that we get the blessing form the Government to do so. I also think it is the proper way to go about it because other businesses have done the same. We need to show that the I.C.S.A. is a responsible organisation in abiding by the regulations laid down at this time.
I would hope before the 8th June to update you further and ask you to stand together on these important issues
Have faith, keep safe.
I am taking this opportunity to highlight the COVID-19 crisis again, that is impacting on us as charter skippers and the effect it has and will have for some time on our business.
We are at this time exploring many avenues to see where we might secure funding/grants for you so that you can get through the season and following season.
The main reason for this communication is to remind you that we are banned due to HSE regulations from operating as charter skippers for now. We are seeking funding / compensation for our losses on that basis. Working at this time could bring the ICSA into disrepute and members should not operate a charter until lockdown is lifted.
Be mindful too that we are licensed operators, have you heard in the news that a couple of pubs failed to close? An garda siochana stated that those publicans found to have breached HSE regulations, when they come to renew their licenses the issue of not closing when asked will be raised as an objection for their renewal. Members should keep this in mind if tempted to operate their charter business before lockdown is lifted.
Keep safe and well.
In the UK, I understand, compensation is being sought on the basis of a percentage of last year’s income / month. I believe that this option would not suit us for several reasons.
We don’t all publish accounts, (Mostly only done by those who operate as Limited Companies). Income Vs turnover is very different at this time of the year (Cost of setting up for the year, e.g. Liferafts, flares, servicing costs, painting, survey, launching etc.,) while tourists/angling numbers are still very low.
The €350 PW option is better for us, it’s in place now, we can avail of it whether or not we publish accounts, we are not trying to set up something unique to us, its income for right now at the hardest part of the season.
On membership, I believe there is plenty of scope for all skippers to join – It will/can remain PRIMARILY for sea angling skippers, and as for precedent, Butch Roberts, who is on the committee, is now a tourism skipper operating on the Skelligs trips.
I don’t understand the distinction, in any case, as some skippers do both, some also do survey work, whale watching etc., and mainly because “ A house divided against itself, cannot stand” (Abe Lincoln and the Bible - Matthew 12:25) We need all the support we can get!
Funding for new Boats is just not going to happen this year, but it is an issue we addressed in the ICSA submission on the National Marine Planning Framework, and the age profile of current Skippers was also addressed, along with many of the current issues mentioned. (funding, fisheries development, and so on.) For a copy of this submission click HERE.
FLAG funding is an option, I believe, (though no one has applied yet, as far as I know), but available funds there will be severely stressed this year and next year, and will, in all likelihood, be prioritized for commercial fishing operations. We have members on most of the FLAG boards , who can be urged to push for this. The first one in will open that door for all.
On the green/white diesel problem, the only solution seems to be for all skippers to register for VAT, and reclaim the taxes. It’s just another business expense, after all.
The Irish Charter Skippers Association
4th April 2020
see this article also on our page
To All Charter Skippers :
The effect of the current health crisis on Charter Skippers is severe and ongoing, leading to the complete cessation of all our operations, until at least the 19th of April, when it will be reviewed. It could well last much longer than that, ruining the season for us all.
It will be difficult to earn sufficient to cover 2020 operating costs, let alone generate an income, in what will remain of the Summer Season.
The sole good news in this matter is that it would seem that Charter Skippers (self-employed) Operations having been shut down by the Government Regulations (as non essential, tourist/recreational, no groups larger than 4) business, we qualify for the Covid-19 unemployment payment of €350 per week.
When applying for this payment, please have your Charter Skippers Licence available, and quote your Licence number, along with your RSI number, to establish your entitlement.
On an ongoing basis, the ICSA committee will continue to push for any and all assistance for Charter Skippers, who are facing economic disaster this year. Please follow our website for further details, as this crisis develops.
Good Luck and good health to you all for 2020.
The Irish Charter Skippers Association
For further information and updates please visit our page COVID-19
Chairman of the I.C.S.A. Donal Kennedy attended a meeting in Athlone on the 23rd January 2020 as a member of the Marine Recreational Angling Survey of Ireland Steering Group along with Luke Aston, I.C.S.A. Shannon region representative. The meeting was very interesting and was chaired by Willie Roche, IFI, who are tasked with others to carry out a survey on the catches of recreational fishing in Ireland.
A time frame this survey is to be implemented has not been not fixed yet but when the group put a plan in place it will move with pace. This survey comes on the back of a directive from the EU regulations EC 199/2008 which compels the Irish Government to carry out same. The survey is being funded by the E.U. and Donal Kennedy was delighted to be at the meeting, representing the I.C.S.A. and be part of the steering group along with Luke Aston.
Following this meeting it brought back the time where the I.C.S.A. fought to make sure that the E.U. back in 2008 were not going to introduce a quota on recreational fish catches. The I.C.S.A. were successful in having the E.U. state that they were not going to introduce a quota and were basically leaving it up to the Irish Government to deal with the issue.
The concern now is, that it has reared its head again under this directive which compels the Irish Government to carry out the survey and following their findings, issue quotas etc or not, should the survey show that recreational fishing is impacting on fish stocks.
We need to be part of this survey so that we can record and have recorded the fish charter skippers catch or release for the season. Doing so will show that what we catch is very small and by no way have impacts on fish stocks compared to the commercial fleet.
Also by taking part in the survey we will be able to show what we catch or release and not allow the E.U. dictate what they think we catch or what impact we have on fish stocks. Whereby the E.U. could put a figure on our recreational fishing catches (which would not be a true reading) and maybe state then, that a quota should have to be introduced. Where would the quota come from? From the commercial sector which in turn would cause issues.
It is important that we get as many charter skippers signed up to the I.C.S.A., take part in the survey so that we have an input on our future.
Click the link below to find out more
Terms of reference (ToR) for the Marine Recreational Angling Survey of Ireland Steering Group
Mathilde Voisin, the Fisheries Policy Officer of the European Bureau for Conservation & Development in Brussels, attended the event “Can fisheries and offshore wind farms co-exist?” which took place in the European Parliament on the 22nd January 2020.
From: Mathilde VOISIN <Mathilde.VOISIN@ebcd.org>
Sent: Friday 24 January 2020 15:20
To: Mathilde VOISIN <Mathilde.VOISIN@ebcd.org>
Cc: Mathilde VOISIN <Mathilde.VOISIN@ebcd.org>
Subject: EVENT REPORT: Can fisheries and offshore wind co-exist ?
I attended this week the event “Can fisheries and offshore wind co-exist?” that took place in the European Parliament, hosted by MEP Peter van Dalen (NL; EPP group), vice-president of the Fisheries Committee and co-organised by Europêche, VisNed, EMK and Collectif Pêcheurs Artisans. Note that Peter van Dalen is going to be the rapporteur on the own initiative procedure of the European Parliament “The impact on the fishing sector of offshore windfarms and other renewable energy systems”.
You can find the press release of Europeche attached to this e-mail.
Have a good weekend,
Click HERE to open the Press Release
A meeting (informal) will be held at the Ireland Angling Show in Swords, Dublin, on Sat 16th Feb at 4.30pm.
Members are welcome and also other charter skippers. A number of important issues coming to the fore which may impact the charter skipper business.
Venue: Upstairs room @ The National Show Centre, Stockhole Lane, Cloghran, Swords, Co. Dublin