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ACT Invites PM To See Southern Drought

ACT Invites PM To See Southern Drought

Tuesday 20 Jan 2004 Gerry Eckhoff Press Releases -- Rural

ACT New Zealand Rural Affairs Spokesman Gerry Eckhoff today wrote to Prime Minister Helen Clark requesting that both she, and Conservation Minister Chris Carter, visit the South Island's drought affected areas.

"Government policy, both past and present, is impacting on farmers' ability to plan for future droughts," Mr Eckhoff said.

"There is little that can be done immediately, but much can be done to alleviate the impacts of legislation - such as the Resource Management Act - on farmers' ability to drought-proof their properties through water harvesting and storage.

"The Department of Conservation's control of valuable high altitude grazing lands - due to the Crown Pastoral Lands Act - is also adding to the severe grazing pressure right throughout the South Island east of the main divide.

"It's essential that urban decision-makers get a first hand view of the effects of legislation on land-based industry, especially during these very difficult summer droughts," Mr Eckhoff said.

ENDS

For more information visit ACT online at http://www.act.org.nz or contact the ACT Parliamentary Office at act@parliament.govt.nz.


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