Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Call for foresters to vote on levy order

The Chair of the Forest Growers Levy Trust, Geoff Thompson, says a positive vote in the current levy referendum is vital to maintain the support of government funding for the industry.

Forest owners are currently voting whether to renew the Commodity Levies Act Order which expires later this year after operating for the past six years.

Voting closes this Saturday, April 20th.

Geoff Thompson says feedback from forest owners has been enthusiastic in support of renewing the order.

“We’ve run meetings and conducted a formal survey of farm foresters’ opinions on how they regard the investment we’ve put mostly into forest research, but also harvest mechanisation, safety, industry recruitment, forest health and biosecurity. That feedback has been pretty keen.
All we need now is the vote to support that enthusiasm.”

Geoff Thompson says he is well aware of recent lack of support in other industries for a levy.

“For our part we’ve worked hard to make sure potential levy payers know how the levy money has worked to benefit them. We’ve been transparent and gone to great lengths to get the message out there. We even broadcast a ten-week television series to inform farm foresters of the levy work progress.”

“However, unlike most other levy funded organisations in the primary sector, the forest industry doesn’t know who most of the levy payers are until they sell their harvest once every few decades. Most industries have levy payers who contribute at least once a year and so there is a direct line of communications from then on.”



Geoff Thompson says foresters need to know that not only is the levy invested in ways to help secure higher returns and lower costs at harvest, but that the levy is often paired up with government or other investment.

He says the just announced partnership of levy funds with government support is a $29 million example.

Te Mahi Ngahere i te Ao Hurihuri – Forestry Work in the Modern Age Partnership is a project to bring automation and robot technology into tree felling and log handling, which anticipates saving harvest and transport supply chain costs by nearly $10 a tonne by 2030.

“This is a hugely important project which will benefit small scale woodlot owners by offsetting the size of their forests by clever use of technology. I would hate to see such development in our industry jeopardised by a small turnout of voters.”

Eligibility to vote is restricted to anyone who owns at least four hectares of trees planted at least ten years ago.

Geoff Thompson says this restriction is because those who would be paying the levy are the ones who have the right to vote for it.

“The voter needs to have trees old enough to mature for harvest sometime in the next six years of the new levy order,” Geoff Thompson says.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

SCOOP COVERAGE: CHRISTCHURCH MOSQUES TERROR ATTACK


Remembrance: Anzac After Christchurch

A community group is creating The Sound of Peace, a crowdsourced soundscape that captures messages of peace from New Zealanders in their own voices and languages...

The Anzac Eve event, The Art of Remembrance with Kristin Darragh, is a concert and memorial service in the grounds of the historic St David’s Memorial Church in Uptown Auckland.

‘As we remember the lives lost in World War One, we remember the horrors of all wars, and the potential to reach out across the divides now to expand understanding and a sense of our shared humanity.’ More>>

 

NZ And France To Seek To End Use Of Social Media For Terrorism

New Zealand and France announced today that the two nations will bring together countries and tech companies in an attempt to bring to an end the ability to use social media to organise and promote terrorism and violent extremism, in the wake of the March 15 terrorist attacks in Christchurch New Zealand. More>>

ALSO:

Christchurch Attacks: Families Offered Option To Stay Permanently

Immigration New Zealand has created a special visa category for those directly impacted by the shootings at Al Noor Mosque and Linwood mosque, as well as their families. More>>

ALSO:

Auckland: Consent Granted For Queens Wharf Cruise Ship Upgrade

In its decision, released this afternoon, Auckland Council says that although the upgrade will have a "range of adverse effects on the environment, both during construction and operation", these can be managed to an "acceptable" level. More>>

ALSO:

Welfare: Access To Hardship Grants Hits Record High

Figures from the Ministry of Social Development for the March 2019 Quarter showed that hardship assistance grants increased by $48 million in the past year... They also showed the emergency housing grants went from $6.6m to $23m, and there were 70,000 extra requests for assistance for food. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Scrapping The Capital Gains Tax

As PM Jacinda Arden said yesterday, there was no point in Labour bringing a proposal into the House that it didn’t have the votes to get passed. Looking back, maybe she always felt this outcome to be inevitable... More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels