07 October 2016
The Australian Country Party is calling for more and bigger dams to combat irrigation water shortages and for flood prevention.
Former ACP candidate for Ovens Valley Dr Julian Fidge has used the recent flooding of the Ovens river in Victoria’s north east as an example.
“The current flooding of the Ovens River is unnecessary. It could have been prevented by building the Big Buffalo Dam, which would have removed 800,000 acre feet, or 1 million megalitres from the Ovens River. For comparison, Lake Hume holds 3 million megalitres.”
“Some people don’t understand that storing the water anywhere in the catchment area helps the whole downstream area. By capturing water from the Ovens system, other catchments can drain more quickly without rivers and creeks getting backed up and flooding” Dr Fidge said.
The Australian Country Party believes now is a good time to press the Victorian government for some of the proceeds of the sale of the Port of Melbourne to be used to build dams.
Big Buffalo dam will never be cheaper to build. A properly built dam would provide base-load electricity generation, productive irrigation, flood mitigation and assist in maintaining a healthy river system.
Former Victorian federal senator and now Australian Country Party member John Madigan says, “In light of recent devistating flooding across Victoria, the state government must implement dam building projects such as Big Buffalo in north east Victoria to to ensure flood mitigation and water security for both rural and domestic supply. This is not just beneficial for Victoria but is socially, economically and environmentally for the country”.
Today the Australian Country Party (ACP) is announcing that former Federal Senator John Madigan has joined the Country Party, and will focus on key issues affecting Country Victoria in the lead up to the next Victorian State Election.
ACP Secretary Darren Cooper said -“John Madigan is a welcome addition to the party. Historically, both he, and the Country Party overlapped on many issues which are based on grass roots and common sense”-.
“John is well known throughout rural and regional Victoria, he is very passionate about issues effecting regional communities and is a champion for Australian manufacturing. John adds to the calibre of members in the Country Party, helping to build a stronger party dedicated to the prosperity of country people-”, Mr Cooper said.
Mr Madigan is keen to ‘hit the ground running’ on issues such as dairy, wind farms, water and manufacturing. Family, small business, education & training and non compliant building are also high on John’s agenda.
Mr Madigan said -“There are so many issues in Victoria we have to address. It’s time for country people to consolidate and join the Country Party as the major parties have long forgotten them”-.
The Australian Country Party candidate for Murray, Robert Danieli calls on the Federal government to undertake an urgent inquiry into recent milk price announcements by Murray Goulburn and Fonterra. Murray Goulburns price adjustment may be related to management issues, but why has Fonterra also dropped its price to farmers?
Our dairy farmers have made business decisions based on minimum price indications and now are at risk of financial ruin. We need an urgent determination if actions by Fonterra are fair and legal.
For more information contact:
0419 992 077
Today Australian Country Party candidate for Indi, Dr Julian Fidge, has announced the ‘Tobacco Taxes for Health’ policy as part of his campaign for the federal seat of Indi in North East Victoria for the upcoming federal election.
Dr Fidge say’s ” In the interests of transperancy and honesty in government, the money collected from the taxation of tobacco products should only be used for health costs such as hospital funding. It is strongly implied that this already occurs, but this does not, in fact, happen. The AUSTRALIAN COUNTRY PARTY believes government should be honest and open with the electorate about spending money that is collected for health purposes.”
“Around 8 billion dollars is collected every year from tobacco excise and duty, and this would go a long way towards balancing Australia’s health budget. This arrangement will be even more important if taxation on tobacco increases, because higher taxation can better support Australia’s health costs.” Dr Fidge said.
Dr Julian Fidge is a local GP based in Wangaratta, Victoria, who is passionate about health issues, especially in rural and regional areas. With the abandonment of common sense representation in rural areas by the coalition and other parties the Australian Country Party is working hard to fill in this void.
Dr Fidge also stated, “The distribution of tobacco taxation should be honest, straightforward and apolitical. In the interests of national health, policies around funding of hospitals and health research and promotion should be made more certain and less open to manipulation from government to government and between state and federal governments. The development of health policy in Australia needs to be more honest and mature and less of a political football between the states and federal government.”
The full policy can be viewed here.
Australian Country Party Vice Chairman Garry Kerr, and DLP State Member of Parliament for Western Metropolitan Region DR Rachel Carling-Jenkins, met with locals and business owners at Toolangi recently to discuss the clear felling process being undertaken by VicForests in the Toolangi area.
Local farmers and a school camp are concerned with water quality & quantity if the new logging coup is clear felled, the school camp nearby draws it’s drinking water from a creek that is fed by run off from where it is to be logged.
Both the Australian Country Party and the DLP whilst fully supporting the Timber Industry do not support clear felling as part of that process.
At the meeting organised by the Country Party, Dr Rachel Carling said she will seek further clarification from the ALP Minister for Agriculture and Regional development, Jaala Pulford, on the issues, facing those in the Toolangi area and what actions the Labor government are proposing to undertake to protect these Industries and those businesses affected, and what if anything VicForests is doing also to address their concerns .
So far enquiries by The Australian Country Party have failed to generate a response from Minister Pulford in relation to these issues.
Australian Country Party candidate for Indi Dr Julian Fidge has called on the National Party to start dealing with reality and build more and larger dams in order to reduce the effects of drought on rural Australia.
Dr Fidge say’s, “The newly announced National Party candidate for Indi, Marty Corboy, recently asked for environmental water to be made available to irrigators, for which we fully support. However, the shortage of water has been caused by our elected representatives’ (including the Nationals) unwillingness to represent rural Australia’s need for a reliable water supply, which can only be supplied by large dams that are filled in times of flood and emptied slowly.”
“The Murray Darling Basin plan is a nasty practical joke, foisted on country people by an urban bureaucracy who want their food, and also environmental flows, without investing in the infrastructure required to provide both of these important components”, Dr Fidge said.
The Big Buffalo Dam was planned 50 years ago, and it will never be built unless the status quo is changed in favour of country Australia.
The Country Party was formed to represent issues just like this and force the major parties to spend money where it is needed, not wasted on buying votes in marginal seats. But country people will have to change their voting to change their treatment, or they will suffer more of the same neglect.