Dairy Deregulation Committee Visit

Echo 22 February 01

Dairy Deregulation Committee Visit

The above Committee will visit and listen to dairy farmers concerns on Friday 23 February, at the Lismore Workers Club between 12 and 1.30pm. The Committee was formed as a result of strong lobbying by the National Party, in response to the effects of industry deregulation on dairying families. I understand the Committee will also accept written submissions.

Flood Levee

As a result of the recent flooding, the flood levee issue has been ignited and a number of community members have expressed concern. I urge local residents to call in and speak with Mr Mark Stalhut, Project Manager at the Flood Levee Project Office, located at 56 Carrington Street, Lismore, telephone 6622 7500 and fax 6622 7755 to obtain accurate information.

Call To Reject Poultry Deregulation

I have called on the Carr Labor Government to reject deregulation of the poultry meat industry when Cabinet meets to discuss the issue. Watering down of the Poultry Meat Industry Act 1986 particularly the ability of contract growers to negotiate collectively with processors, would potentially impact heavily on rural communities and poultry growers. Contract poultry meat growing is a significant industry in Lismore, providing many jobs and flow-on benefits throughout the community. The Carr Government has the power to ensure poultry meat growing continues to be a viable business in this area. The Government must act to provide the necessary safeguards to an industry that has reliably produced a quality product. I believe there has been no serious analysis of issues such as social welfare, economic impacts, investment growth or ecologically sustainable development. I am deeply concerned that the Carr Labor Government had not conducted a transparent rural impact statement before considering the issue of deregulation.

Corndale Federation Celebrations

It was my pleasure to attend and take part in Corndale's Centenary of Federation celebrations last weekend. The wet weather did not dampen the community's spirit and many enjoyed the festivities - congratulations to the organisers and helpers.

NorthPower

My office has been advised that anyone who is having trouble meeting NorthPower account payments, following recent flooding should contact the Customer Service Centre (132 066) as soon as possible so that alternative arrangements can be made.

Off Road Diesel

I have spoken to many farmers in the district in relation to changes to the State rebate scheme. I have sought clarification from NSW Treasury and The Hon Ian Causley, Federal Member for Page regarding this issue. A tollfree Diesel Fuel Information Line has been established and can be contacted on 1300 657 162. From information provided, I believe that an eligible recipient of the Diesel Fuel Rate (ie a farmer) can claim back the excise via the Commonwealth Diesel Fuel Rebate Scheme (DFRS) and the GST on diesel via an input tax credit on the Business Activity Statement (BAS). It may be conceptually easier to see the State rebate as having been replaced by the GST, which is effectively rebated to registered businesses. Therefore upon receipt of input tax credits a claimant should not be `out of pocket'. I would be interested to receive further comments, especially if constituents have particular information if this is not the case.

Rural Health Scholarships

I would like to advise local students, that have graduated or current year 12 students, of scholarships available through the NSW Rural Doctors Network website, www.nswrdn.com.au. This site advises of assistance to study health courses at universities, listing many disciplines.

2001 Senior Citizens week will be celebrated 18 - 25 March. For all seniors week program and event details contact the Seniors Information Service on 13 12 44.

Lismore Contact Details:

Office: 55 Carrington Street  LISMORE
Postal: PO Box 52  LISMORE  NSW  2480
Telephone: 02 6621 3624
Facsimile: 02 6622 1403
Email: lismore@parliament.nsw.gov.au

Murwillumbah Contact Details:

Telephone: 02 6672 7577