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Labour's Admission, A Foul Emission

Labour's Admission, A Foul Emission

Friday 18 Jul 2003 Gerry Eckhoff Press Releases -- Rural -- ACT Rural Website

Agriculture Minister Jim Sutton's admission that legislation is likely to be introduced - to compel processing companies to collect the flatulence tax on Labour's behalf - represents a complete breakdown in the relationship between the livestock industry and the Government, ACT New Zealand Rural Affairs Spokesman Gerry Eckhoff said today.

"The Government's heavy-handedness and bully-boy attitude has destroyed any remnants of goodwill that may have existed between itself, and rural New Zealand in the past," Mr Eckhoff said.

"The rural sector provides 67 percent of New Zealand's total exports, and 17 percent of our GDP. Yet Labour is willing to trade all rural goodwill for the $8.4 million that the Flatulence Tax will collect. The introduction of this legislation will give farmers an opportunity to see whether parties - particularly United Future and the Greens - are willing stand up for them, and vote down this anti-farmer legislation.

"I am calling on the Government to explain why other methane emitters, such as local body landfills, are not also taxed. They are New Zealand's second biggest emitter of methane - yet Ministers' Hodgson and Sutton have failed to explain to farmers why livestock alone are being taxed.

"This is just discriminatory to the enth degree. I can promise the Government that this fight will continue," Mr Eckhoff said.


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