Prime Minister Tony Abbott: Timber industry vital to economic future.TYLA HARRINGTON March 7, 2014 4:45am
The local timber industry could not have found a more potent ally.
Prime Minister Tony Abbott, when addressing about 600 Forest Products Association members on Tuesday night in Canberra, made a commitment to set up a new advisory council to support the timber industry.
The PM said there were too many ‘‘locked up forests’’ and that he wanted the timber industry to be a ‘‘vital part of Australia’s economic future, not just something that was a relic of our history.’’
His rousing address was enough to revive hopes that commercial timber workers return to the local state forests that were converted to National Parks by the state Labor Party in 2010.
Mathoura business owner and timber worker Chris Crump was at Tuesday night’s dinner in Canberra and met with Mr Abbott and Minister for Environment Greg Hunt.
Mr Crump spoke with the PM about the situation in Mathoura, Deniliquin and Barham where the commercial timber industry was effectively ended following the change to National Parks.
Mr Crump also told Mr Abbott about the recent business closures in Mathoura.
‘‘After all these years it looks as though we have a future,’’ Mr Crump said.
‘‘I’m not just fighting it for us or the timber industry, it’s a fight for our town.
‘‘When Tony Abbott spoke people’s shoulders lifted .
‘‘I can’t tell you how excited I am about it,’’ Mr Crump said.
‘‘I look forward to the direction we’re heading .
‘‘If people can get behind this now we can actually do this .
‘‘Deniliquin people gave us the support when we were closing down and we need it again.’’
Mr Crump gave Mr Abbott and Mr Hunt copies of documents compiled by Mathoura man David Joss which show the effect the National Parks conversion has had on the local area.
Mr Crump said the documents also show that the tourists that were promised would visit the area once National Parks were in place had not eventuated.
Even though he was only able to talk with the PM for a short time, Mr Crump described the meeting and Mr Abbott’s address as ‘‘unbelievable’’.
‘‘We don’t support, as a Government and as a Coalition, further lock-ups of our forests. We just don’t support it,’’ Mr Abbott said.
‘‘We have quite enough National Parks. We have quite enough locked up forests already. In fact, in an important respect, we have too much locked up forest.
‘‘When I look out tonight at an audience of people who work with timber, who work in forests, I don’t see people who are environmental vandals; I see people who are the ultimate conservationists.’’
State Member for Murray-Darling John Williams welcomed Mr Abbott’s promise of an advisory council.
He said he hoped it may lead to a review of the amount of National Parks there are in NSW.
‘‘Obviously any support for the timber industry is encouraging,’’ Mr Williams said.
‘‘Governments have insisted on suggesting that tourists would replace the timber industry locally .
The facilitator of a new program to help empower women with a disability to become leaders in the community says it is time to stand up.
The Mulwala Lions had satisfying and hard fought win, in difficult conditions, against last year’s grand finalists at Lonsdale Reserve on Saturday.
The second annual Bonnie and Clyde Rods, Rats and Rides Festival fired up at Tatura Park at the weekend (April 11-12), drawing thousands of petrol heads and rockabilly music lovers to Tatura.
The Victorian government today guaranteed the future of the National Centre for Farmer Health.
Hundreds rose early for Dawn Services across the district on Saturday to commemorate 100 years since the Gallipoli landings.
Kyabram and District Sportstar of the Year nominations finalised
Three local clubs get together at Kings Park.
Tributes flow for Finley's inspiring mother, friend and farming advocate Jennifer Hawkins
Heathcote police are appealing for information after a woman was injured in a hit-and-run incident on Anzac Day.
A new book, Men from the River Bends, honours Cobram-Barooga and district soldiers who paid the ultimate sacrifice after enlisting in World War 1.
The Deniliquin Domestic Violence Liaison Committee hosted a community lunch at the ‘Rocket Park’ on Thursday to celebrate the launch of its new banner.
Widespread rain late last week and on Saturday put a smile on the faces of farmers preparing to sow crops or waiting for weeds to emerge on early-sown rye-grass.
Discover unbelievable local deals from local businesses every week in the Goulburn and Murray Valley area with Leapon.com.au!
Search properties for sale or rent across North Central Victoria and Southern NSW. Visit your local website for local homes....
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.