Longreach visit to educate Parliamentary Committee MPs

  • Bi-Partisan Visit brings Ag and Environment MPs to Longreach
  • Committee Chair and Deputy Chair to Learn about Check Fences
  • They will also learn about DCQ’s Prickly Acacia Fight

A robust bi-partisan commitment to wild-dog check fencing in Central Western Queensland is the outcome local member Lachlan Millar will be looking for when the ALP Chairman and LNP Deputy Chairman of the Queensland Parliamentary Committee on Agriculture and the Environment visit Longreach next week.

Queensland has no senate so the work of review and investigation is undertaken by ten bipartisan parliamentary committees. Chairman Glenn Butcher, ALP member for Gladstone and Deputy Chairman Tony Perrett, LNP Member for Gympie will spend Monday July 25, 2016 and Tuesday, July 26 in the Central West.

“I have been delighted to assist these two gentleman in meetings and inspections which will help them gain a deeper understanding of how the check fences can lay the foundations for an economic renaissance in western Queensland. Controlling the scourge of wild dogs will see a re-birth of sheep and wool as a key industry in the west,” said Member for Gregory, Lachlan Millar.

“The MPs will have the opportunity to undertake inspections of the progress that has been made on the ground at Weewondilla and to have extensive discussions with RAPAD’s CEO and Wild Dog Project Officer and with Longreach regional Council,” said Mr Millar.

“I also felt it was important to gain an understanding of the economic multipliers attached to sheep and wool so they will have the opportunity to have a chat with a local shearing contractor. Wild dogs have not only afflicted landholders, they have also had major impacts on shearing crews and the men and women they employed.

“The loss of those jobs has hurt local small business so the committee members will also catch up with Doug Winterbotham to gain first hand understanding of the money that sheep and wool spread through local economies and how that has been lost to the wild dogs, too,” he said.

Mr Millar said that while it is a busy agenda for the two MPs he had also arranged for them to meet with Leanne Kohler at Desert Channels Queensland.

“Leanne and her team are great unsung heroes in land conservation. Their untiring fight against prickly acacia and the threat it represents to Australia’s largest natural grassy ecosystem is not just an amazing story, it is a story that has reached a crucial turning point,” said Mr Millar.

“DCQ have shown it can be beaten. With the political will to properly fund an eradication program, we can save an ecosystem that is just as much a Queensland icon as is the Great Barrier Reef. I hope this visit will inspire both visitors and spread word of the need for this funding on both sides of the house.”