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Heartland Tour turns through Bay of Plenty

ACT farmers visiting the Bay of Plenty are learning the extent to which local
government costs are damaging Bay of Plenty farms and businesses, says ACT
rural spokesman Owen Jennings.

ACT's 'top four' farmers are travelling by ute through both the North and South
Islands over the next fortnight, taking the ACT message to rural communities.

The four, MP Owen Jennings, and candidates Penny Webster, Gerry Eckhoff and
Andy Davies held meetings in Turua, Thames, Waikino and Te Puke yesterday.
Today they are holding public meetings and farm meetings in Whakatane, Onepu,
Reparoa and Taupo.

Tour leader Owen Jennings says ACT has fresh ideas about bringing local
government costs under control.

"The ACT Party wants to remove one tier of local government," Mr Jennings said.
"More local government simply means higher rates and more difficulties for
farmers' and businesses' legitimate development. The delays and frustrations
caused by the Resource Management Act and various councils' administration of
this Act are legion. ACT wants to reduce costs for rural businesses."

Mr Jennings said his team of rural candidates had a clear view of the impact
that regulations have on business, and would seek to reduce the number of
unnecessary laws and regulations.

The team makes up the top farmer placings on ACT's party list. Mr Jennings,
the party's rural spokesman and a former national President of Federated
Farmers, is ranked 6, Ms Webster, a former Auckland chairman of Federated
Farmers is ranked number 8, Mr Eckhoff, a high country farmer and
conservationist, is number 9 and Mr Davies, a Cambridge farmer, is number 14.
ACT has the highest number of farmer candidates on its list out of all
political parties.

"It's an indication of the priority ACT places on the farming sector," Mr
Jennings said. "ACT recognises that restoring rural profitability is a major
concern for New Zealand."


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