• Loddon Herald

MP slams new laws

Northern Victoria Region MP Tim Quilty has slammed the

Victorian parliament for passing the agriculture amendment bill yesterday

“This bill demonstrates the divide between the country and the Melbourne based

Victorian government,” Mr Quilty said.

In a statement today, Mr Quilty said

The Bill supported by both Labor and the opposition prevents hunters sharing meat

harvested from game animals.

Hunters could be charged for shooting a pest animal like a rabbit and feeding it to

the next-door neighbour’s cat. A farmer who butchers their own meat is no longer

allowed to share or gift this to their family and friends.

“This legislation is completely unworkable and shows what a lack of consultation

achieves. Many peak bodies have complained about not being approached by the

government before this legislation was released,” Mr Quilty said.

An authorised officer can now without court order or warrant enter someone’s

property, demand documents and ask any questions that they wish. If a farmer,

beekeeper or orchardist does not understand what is going on or does not provide

the documents, or gives incorrect information to the authorised officer, they can be

find over $18,000.

In addition, the legislation means a farmer could be fined over $80,000 if seeds from

a noxious weed is found in fodder transported to another farm or transported to

another part of their own farm.

“Most farmers work hard to control noxious weeds and feral animals on their land.

They have a far far better track record in this area then the state government, with

crown lands increasingly an incubator spewing out weeds and pest animals,” Mr

Quilty said.

“The government would do better to focus on cleaning up it’s own backyard, instead

of pushing into everybody else’s.”

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