Federal Member for Murray Sharman Stone has taken aim at senior members of her own government in a bid to secure funding for SPC Ardmona.JARROD WHITTAKER January 10, 2014 6:14am
Speaking out: Federal Member for Murray Sharman Stone has lashed out at members of her own government about their SPC Ardmona funding views.
The embattled Goulburn Valley food processor is seeking $25
Federal Cabinet was due to consider the matter last month, but deferred a decision.
According to reports, senior cabinet figures oppose funding the Coca-Cola Amatil subsidiary for fear of creating a precedent.
Yesterday, Dr Stone said there was a danger free-market advocates within Cabinet would oppose the funding for ideological reasons.
‘‘This isn’t about protection, it isn’t about subsidy,’’ Dr Stone said.
‘‘This is about a one-off co-investment so this particular company can survive another day.’’
SPC Ardmona would contribute $90
About 3000 jobs across the region could be lost if the canner was to close, she said.
Yesterday, she told The Financial Review some within Cabinet believed ‘‘support for manufacturing somehow interferes with so-called free-market forces’’.
‘‘People run around and say ‘We’ve got a level playing field and if you fail it’s because you’re not good enough’,’’ Dr Stone said.
‘‘That doesn’t ring true.’’
She said businesses were affected by a range of factors beyond their control.
The issue of government support has divided the Federal Coalition, with the Nationals supporting helping the Goulburn Valley company.
Prime Minister Tony Abbott recently weighed into the government assistance debate, declaring ‘‘no government has ever subsidised its way to prosperity’’.
The issue of support for SPC Ardmona is expected to be considered at the next Cabinet meeting.
Dr Stone said she expected the meeting to be before the end of the month.
Federal Opposition leader Bill Shorten yesterday said Dr Stone’s comments highlighted divisions in the Coalition.
‘‘We have seen Sharman Stone, a Liberal senior member of parliament, say that SPC should be protected,’’ Mr Shorten said.
‘‘We will have to hear if Joe Hockey is going to give in to her or not.’’
Football nut and AFL Goulburn Murray league operations manager Simon Devine is looking forward to the challenge of carrying on the proud tradition of the Goulburn Valley Football League.
Police investigating a break and enter at a Mulwala club more than 10 years ago are renewing their appeal for public assistance by releasing an image of a person they believe has information to assist them.
Tatura’s Victory Hall is set for a big year as preparations get under way to celebrate the hall’s 90th birthday in September.
Former district resident and award-winning television producer Joanna Werner will no doubt be shopping for a glitzy gown ahead of the Emmy Awards in New York on February 20.
Rochester Secondary College school captains Dom Atley and Tim Poole have been accepted to study biomedical science in the first step towards becoming doctors.
Will it be Merrigum or Lancaster?
Fire destroys key public buildings in Seymour
Finley Henry Matheson was bestowed one of the highest Australia Day honours.
Heathcote Hostel residents were treated to a visit from Heathcote’s favourite horse, Sub Zero, as part of Australia Day celebrations.
Recent weather conditions have come as a mixed blessing for farmers, with high rainfall and humidity providing a respite for irrigators as well as difficult growing and picking conditions for fruit growers.
Darren McLoughlin only started playing croquet seven years ago.
From orchards to harvest to shelves, a new exhibition will celebrate the Goulburn Valley’s iconic fruit industry. The Photos of the Fruit Industry exhibition will run as part of the SheppARTon Festival in March and aims to share memories and history of an industry that has shaped the region.
Former Benalla footballer Tom Rockliff has been named captain of the Brisbane Lions Football Club.
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