Major Milestones
July 2, 1992 Federal Minister of Fisheries and Oceans announced a two-year moratorium on northern cod in NAFO division 2J3KL (northern cod). Cod represented over half (55 percent) of the average annual catch in this area between 1981 and 1992.
August 2, 1992 Northern Cod Adjustment and Recovery Program (NCARP) was established. NCARP was designed to replace income lost as a result of the northern cod moratorium. Approximately 28,000 fishers and plant workers were eligible to receive income support benefits under the program.
August, 1992 Federal Minister of Fisheries and Oceans announced a Groundfish Licence Retirement Program under which 876 fishers retired their licences.
April 23, 1993 The Transitional Fisheries Adjustment Program (TFAP) became the second income support program. TFAP was instituted to assist individuals adversely affected by quota cuts on the West (mainly Gulf Region) Coast.
August 31, 1993 Federal Minister of Fisheries and Oceans established moratoria on several fish stocks including cod and American plaice on the south coast of the Province.
August 31, 1993 The Atlantic Groundfish Adjustment Program (AGAP), the third income support program, was developed to assist industry workers negatively impacted by other closures and quota reductions announced in 1993.
September, 1993 The Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, announced the Fishery Closure Training Allowance (FCTA). This program provided training and income support to fishers in 3Ps between the time the fishery closed on September 7th and when their Unemployment Insurance benefits started on November 15th. A total of $2.3 million was paid to approximately 1,000 fishers.
September, 1993 NAFO announces a moratorium on 3LNO American plaice and flounder and on 3NO witch flounder.
January 1, 1994 Federal Minister of Fisheries and Oceans announced the indefinite closure of the northern cod fishery.
January 1, 1994 AGAP was expanded following the announcement of further closures and quota reductions.
May 15, 1994 The Atlantic Groundfish Strategy (TAGS) was established at a cost of $1.9 billion. This program was scheduled to run five years, and provided adjustment and income support for fishery workers displaced by the Atlantic groundfish crisis.
October 14, 1994 The Federal government established four regional Harvesting Adjustment Boards to focus on reducing harvesting capacity in the Atlantic groundfish industry and to advise the government on licence and early retirement programs for fishers.
November, 1994 As part of TAGS, DFO and HRDC announced the Special Eligibility Criteria (SEC) which recognized enterprise owners with an historical attachment to the fishing industry. Fishers who met this criteria were eligible to receive income support benefits for the full duration of TAGS. Fishers deemed eligible for SEC were the only fishers eligible to apply for the Groundfish Licence Retirement program and the Early Retirement Program. Approximately 5,200 fishers qualified for SEC status.
October 11, 1995 An expected shortfall in the TAGS budget for 1995/96 was addressed through adjustments to active programming and administrative budgets. An earlier proposal has called for amendments to the incomesupport side of the program.
October 11, 1995 Results of the first round of bids under the TAGS Groundfish Licence Retirement program were announced in Newfoundland and Labrador. 177 bids were accepted with an estimated total payout of $19.3 million. Individuals accepted were required to surrender both their groundfish licence and Personal Fishing Registration and leave the commercial fishery permanently.
November 15, 1995 The Atlantic Fishers Early Retirement Program (AFERP) and the Fishplant Older Workers Adjustment Program (FOWAP), funded 70 percent by TAGS and 30 percent by the Provincial government were implemented. Approximately 1,100 fishery workers aged 55 to 64 have applied to take part in the programs as of April 1996.
May, 1996 First group of TAGS recipients exhaust their program eligibility in May 1996. It was initially planned that this process will continue on a weekly basis, with the majority of people not being excluded until 1999.
July 22, 1996 HRDC announced that, due to budgetary problems, TAGS could end as early as May 1998, which if realized, would be one year earlier than previously planned. Money earmarked for training and adjustment initiatives was reallocated to income support payments.
August 1, 1996 A total of 213 groundfish licences were permanently retired under the second round of the Groundfish Licence Retirement Program. Total expenditures for this round were $25.9 million.
August 1, 1996 TAGS Active Programming was eliminated (except for prior commitments to clients).
September, 1996 Federal Minister of Fisheries permitted a recreational cod fishery for all residents of the Province. Recreational fishers were allowed to catch and retain a maximum of 10 fish per day.
January, 1997 The office for the Atlantic Fishers Early Retirement Program and the Fishplant Older Workers Adjustment Program closed. A total of 250 fishers were approved for AFERP at an estimated cost of $22 million. An additional 560 plant workers were also approved under FOWAP with an associated expenditure estimated at $40 million.
May, 1997 In response to the scheduled conclusion of the existing TAGS program and in the absence of any significant recovery of the fish stocks, the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans announced a review of the TAGS program would be conducted in the fall of 1997.
May, 1997 For the first time since September, 1993, a commercial cod fishery opened on the south and west coasts. The quota was set at 10,000 and 6,000 tonnes in NAFO Divisions 3Ps and 4RS3Pn respectively.
July 6, 1997 Effective until December 31, 1997 any TAGS clients filing for EI can use their weeks of TAGS benefits as weeks of labour force attachment.