Fishers say red tape hampering drought aidBy Kate Stephens and Bernadette Young, Friday June 14, 2013 - 11:43 EST
Fishermen in north-west Queensland's Gulf Country say drought assistance for fishermen is over-regulated and drowning in red tape.
Gary Ward, from the Gulf of Carpentaria Commercial Fishermen's Association, says most operators do not apply for drought relief assistance from the State Government because of the lengthy application process.
"It's long, drawn out - we're very isolated - everything has got to be done by snail mail," he said.
"We don't have computers at our fingertips and all that stuff, yes it just puts you off."
Meanwhile, Mr Ward also says categorising Spanish mackerel as sustainable is a lot to do with recent research, rather than a reduction in fishing levels.
The State Government has released its latest fish stock report which shows Spanish mackerel in the Gulf has moved from the 'uncertain' category to 'sustainably fished'.
Mr Ward says in recent years there has been a concerted effort to collecting more data on the fish's stock levels.
"The Davies family on the fishing vessel the 'Wildcard' have done an enormous amount of numbers over a number of years on research into Spanish mackerel in the Gulf," he said.
"They've provided sampling and provided at no remuneration observers to go on their boat - they've done so much work.
"That's all gone to the fact that it is sustainable."
© ABC 2013
More breaking news
WA's Kimberley is in the midst of one of its biggest wet seasons on record, causing headaches for emergency services, remote communities and cattle stations cut off by flooding, but it has not been all bad news for the region.
Some homes in the community of Borroloola on the Gulf of Carpentaria have been evacuated with 74 residents sheltering elsewhere, as they wait for Cyclone Alfred to make landfall about sunrise on Tuesday.
Shacks in the fishing village of King Ash Bay in the Northern Territory's Gulf of Carpentaria have been flooded by the McArthur River.