“The Labor Government is out of touch and disconnected with the impact that Australia’s new carbon tax will have on horticulture industries, production and industry development in the Goulburn Valley and its promised assistance package of $200 million will be well short of what’s required,” according to Nationals Senator, Bridget McKenzie.
Senator McKenzie questioned the Parliamentary Secretary, Senator Kate Lundy yesterday on the impact of carbon tax on fruit growers and producers in the Goulburn Valley and their ability to access regional assistance packages.
“It is a region of Victoria heavily reliant on horticultural production and obviously food processing makes up a key component of the local economy,” the Senator said as part of her question.
Senator Lundy responded by confusing the region with the Latrobe Valley and referred to its “eventual retirement of all existing emission intensive brown coal generators”
“The Senator doesn’t understand the Goulburn Valley. She doesn’t even know where it is,” Senator McKenzie said.
“The targeted assistance of $200 million from the Regional Structural Adjustment Assistance Package is not going to be nearly enough to support regional communities throughout Victoria.
The $200 million allocated won’t even be enough to support the Goulburn Valley,” she said.
“I recommend that the Productivity Commission investigates the horticulture industry in relation to its trade exposure to this unwelcome tax however, sadly there is no provision for the tax to be reviewed until June, 2015.
Senator McKenzie’s questions can be found on Hansard on page 2 at: http://aph.gov.au/hansard/senate/dailys/ds081111.pdf