Katrina Hodgkinson did not visit any of the offices affected by Local Land Services while in Deniliquin on Thursday.December 5, 2012 4:13am
NSW Minister for Primary Industries Katrina Hodgkinson did not visit any of the three organisations affected by Local Land Services during her visit to Deniliquin on Thursday.
The minister met with representatives from eight local councils, irrigator groups, private landholders and other agriculture stakeholders to discuss the Local Land Services proposal and the Murray-Darling Basin Plan.
However she has been criticised for not visiting the Department of Primary Industries (DPI), Livestock Health and Pest Authority (LHPA) or the Catchment Management Authority (CMA) offices.
The three organisations will be joined to form Local Land Services in 2014, and are facing budget and job cuts ahead of the merger.
Riverina LHPA board chairman Butch Lane said it was ‘‘not quite right’’ that the minister was in Deniliquin — where the Riverina LHPA headquarters is located — and did not meet with employees.
‘‘Whether she doesn’t want to talk to LHPA people, we don’t know.’’
Mr Lane said it was ‘‘disheartening’’.
‘‘When we’re all trying our best to do what the minister’s asked us too
A spokesperson from the minister’s office said the primary reason for the minister’s visit was to discuss the basin plan and ovine Johne’s disease (OJD).
‘‘The minister was in town to meet with local councils and representatives from local councils, as well as farmers and landholders about the Murray-Darling Basin Plan and OJD,’’ she said.
While disappointed that Ms Hodgkinson did not meet with the LHPA, DPI or CMA, Mr Lane did say consultation had improved compared to last time the LHPA underwent change.
The organisation was restructured about five years ago under the previous Labor government, when Ian Macdonald was the Minister for Primary Industries.
Mr Lane said at that time, Mr Macdonald announced the change at a conference he was opening, and it was not up for debate.
‘‘I think he walked out without even remembering to open the conference,’’ Mr Lane said.
The chairman said it was ‘‘extremely good’’ that consultation was taking place this time.
He said LHPAs were making submissions to the stakeholder reference panel on Local Land Services, and he encouraged landholders to do the same.
‘‘We urge people, whether they’re in favour of the LHPA or not, to get in there and get on the website or write to somebody on the reference panel and let them know their thoughts.’’
To comment on the proposed plan, visit http://haveyoursay.nsw.gov.au/locallandservices
Police are appealing for witnesses after yesterday's head-on crash in Pine Lodge.
The Yarrawonga Pigeons scored a 20 point victory over the Myrtleford Saints at the JC Lowe Oval in Yarrawonga on Saturday.
The Aboriginal and wider community is mourning the death of revered Bangerang Aboriginal elder, Uncle John ‘‘Sandy’’ Atkinson.
A WORKING group has been formed to tackle Moama’s housing problems.
ROCHESTER’S mums and bubs fitness class is only in its third week but it has already doubled its enrolment numbers, blowing organisers’ expectations out of the water.
Tongala Football Club lost to Rumbalara in the Murray Netball League on Saturday by 14 points.
Four generations of Comi girls this Mother's Day
Berrigan Shire councillor Daryll Morris says he has been sickened by some of the vitriol and personal attacks to surface since the council’s proposal to redevelop Finley’s Memorial Hall and School of Arts site was revealed in October last year.
DESPITE criticism from within the community over a perceived lack of use, the O’Keefe Rail Trail has enjoyed good traffic over the past couple of weeks, with more to come.
Members of a Cobram social group have encouraged women to become a part of community groups, committees and boards.
School fundraises for student with leukaemia.
ix industry and local government representatives, five water services committee members and two community members have been appointed to the new Connections Stakeholder Consultative Committee.
The News magazines are online - read high quality magazines in your time. Check in regularly for the latest editions.
Riverine Herald's well regarded locally produced magazines. They're now online, so you can read them whenever and wherever you like.
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.