DISAPPOINTED AND DISGUSTED: Member for Gregory Lachlan Millar and farmer/grazier Ian Sampson.
DISAPPOINTED AND DISGUSTED: Member for Gregory Lachlan Millar and farmer/grazier Ian Sampson. Aden Stokes

Step back for local graziers

LOCAL farmers are disappointed with the reintroduction of vegetation management legislation into Queensland Parliament last week.

The proposed Vegetation Management and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2018 has been referred to the State Development, Natural Resources and Agricultural Industry Development Committee for consultation.

Fourth generation farmer/grazier at Gindie Ian Sampson said the proposed legislation was unbalanced and put limits on farmers and graziers property rights.

Mr Sampson spoke to the CQ News about his love and passion for his land and what he does and doesn't agree with in regards to "bully-tactics” being used.

"One thing that Annastacia Palaszczuk has done with this new legislation is really put farmers on their feet,” he joked.

"Yes, walking off their properties, down the road.

"If it goes ahead there are going to be some really sad issues.

Mr Sampson said he was "disappointed” and "disgusted” and thought, if it went through, would have a negative effect on future generations.

"Never before have I ever felt like a criminal,” he said.

"It really deflated me, reading through this (amended bill), to see how little say I have on my property.

"In my 61 years, farmers have brought this country so far in their management styles, they have enhanced the country.

"I feel so disappointed that after all the work we have put in, we are totally not trusted.”

Mr Sampson said he felt like he had been taken over, and wished those pushing the bill would understand that "I just want the best for my land”.

"I love my farm and my son loves his farm,” he said.

"We don't farm for anything else but a love of the land.

"If I had my life over again I would still be a farmer.

"I would love to challenge Anna to come and have a coffee and a scone with me and I'll show her first hand how I farm.”

Farmers manage vegetation and clear land to grow pasture for cattle and sheep to eat, and to plant crops such as sorghum, sugar cane, and a range of fruit and vegetables.

LNP Member for Gregory Lachlan Millar has vowed to stand by Queensland's farmers and graziers, after the Labor Party introduced the proposed legislation.

"Labor have launched an unfair attack on farmers, graziers, their families and rural communities right across Queensland,” Mr Millar said.

"I want to see the development of more high value agricultural land, which is why I am committed to fighting tooth and nail to protect the rights of our hard working farmers and graziers.

"It will affect housing affordability, food security and make battling drought much more difficult.

"We need less emotion and more facts in the vegetation management debate.

"The fact is that over the last three years, since the LNP's balanced vegetation management laws were passed, the clearance rate is 17 per cent lower than the long run average.

"Protecting the reef is vital but scaremongering about the impact of farmers and graziers is just disgraceful.”

The Vegetation Management and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2018 is currently before the State Development, Natural Resources and Agricultural Industry Development Committee for detailed consideration.


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