Some concerns are being raised about last minute changes to the spring bear hunt, and how they’re going to affect local businesses. The PC Critic for Natural Resources and Forestry says the province is limiting the number of non-resident hunters who are able to take part. Todd Smith says limiting tags for out-of-province hunters leaves the industry with a black eye.

Smith says a lot of non-resident hunters have already paid their down payments, and arranged for travel. But now, he says they are going to get to northern Ontario to find out they won’t have the tags they need to go out and hunt. He says the whole point of extending the pilot program was to grow tourism and economic development in the north. But, he says these changes are counter-intuitive.

However, Smith is proposing one solution. He says there may be an opportunity to honour the packages sold by the outfitters for this spring, and then make necessary changes before the fall hunt begins. There are no limits on the number of resident hunters able to participate.

(With files from: Andreas Pandikiu)