Michelle Lensink

NRM Bill passes after six years in the making

Shadow Environment Minister Michelle Lensink has welcomed the passage of the Natural Resources Management (Review) Amendment Bill 2010 in Parliament yesterday.

This Bill was drafted following a 2007 review which was a requirement of the passage of the Act in 2004.

The State Liberals have had numerous complaints from landholders about Natural Resources Management (NRM) since its inception, including requirements imposed on them that impact their ability to farm.

“Complaints about the powers of unauthorised officers and the water prescription process in the Adelaide Hills have been particularly contentious,” said Ms Lensink.

“As a result, we have managed to gain concessions for landholders which mean that in the future, authorised officers may only enter someone’s property or vehicle if they are either acting under the authority of a warrant issued by a magistrate, have the person’s permission or have reasonable suspicion that they may be in possession of a dangerous animal.

“The Weatherill Labor Government also agreed with our assertion that compensation must be paid for losses as a result of an authorised officer digging up land.

“The State Liberals, with the support of other parties in the Legislative Council, were also successfully able to protect the right to remain silent and to oppose massive penalties of up to $2.2 million on landowners.

“There were a number of sensible amendments in the Bill which will streamline NRM operations which should result in a reduction in administration and red tape.”

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