Leadership with the Municipality of Sioux Lookout is airing their concerns about a plan to harvest large amounts of wilderness in the Hudson area over the next ten years.
In a Special Council meeting earlier this month, Councillors voted to approve a letter to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Obishikakaang Resources Corporation about the Lac Seul Forest’s 2024-2034 Forest Management Plan.
Mayor Doug Lawrance’s letter from the municipality outlines a number of concerns from Councillors and the community about a proposal to harvest a large number of trees in the Hudson area – which is within the municipal boundaries of Sioux Lookout.
Council is now urging the Ministry and Obishikakaang to harvest further north and avoid Hudson.
“Our Council strongly believes that this plan will have negative impacts on the community and tourists who have long been accustomed to using these areas for recreation,” states the letter.
“As residents, there is a deep connection to the land, and many rely on it to enhance their well-being and quality of life,” it continues.
Councillor Joyce Timpson stressed the economic value of the wilderness near Sioux Lookout, as it not only attracts potential residents but also developers looking to create housing.
“[We need to stress] the importance of Hudson to Sioux Lookout,” she said. “It really is, for future development in terms of housing… it may be our only option for the future. This kind of development could impede other types of development in Hudson.”
Council’s letter also highlights potential problem areas such as the Johhny Lucs Road that goes east to west along the north part of the proposed harvest, the need for significant buffers along the boat launch leading to Big Vermilion Lake and an increased buffer along the north side of Jackfish Lake.
Mayor Lawrance says he has been in touch with Lac Seul First Nation and Slate Falls First Nation about the plan as well, and he is expecting them to join Sioux Lookout in fighting against the proposal.