We stand for:

  • Country People.
  • Accountable Local Government.
  • Small business and manufacturing
  • Access to public land for recreation
  • Fair water rights
  • Fair trade
  • Old school values

Media releases

Country Party Opposes the Proposed Privatisation of the Land Titles Office (Vic

21 August 2017


The Australian Country Party is strongly opposed to the privatisation of the Land Titles Office of Victoria.

Privatisation generally is a disaster for the community, providing only a small, once only injection of capital in return for higher charges and less efficient service for users forever afterwards. Victorians need look no further than their electricity bills to see how privatisation has provided a windfall for the private companies now providing this essential service.

Moreover, the Land Titles Office should remain in public management because the government requires this important information at it’s fingertips in order to plan for Victoria’s future properly. The government is responsible for planning, zoning and housing and would not be able to access and arrange the data as it requires if the Land Titles Office was privatised.

Finally, there is no need to sell the Land Titles Office. The office operates under the user pays principle, and the funding it receives covers its own running costs.

Privatisation should only occur when there are significant, long term benefits to the community. This is not the case here.

Former federal senator for Victoria and now Country Party member John Madigan, says ” The proposal by the Victorian Labor government to privatise the Land Titles Office of Victoria is another example of this governments’ incompetence”.
“The privatisation of electricity, gas, public transport, hospitals and ports has proven to be a social and economic disaster” he said.

The Country Party calls on the Andrews Government to abandon further privatisation generally, and the privatisation of the Lands Title Office in particular.

For more information contact:

Robert Danieli – chairman@countryparty.org.au
John Madigan – john.madigan@countryparty.org.au – 0498 781 243

John Madigan (Former Senator) on Defence & Fuel Security


03 March 2017
Today’s Herald Sun page 5 Australia’s F-35 Lightning 11 Joint Strike Fighter $17 billion dollars for 72 RAAF F35 aircraft.

ABC Radio AM program today ” Stumbling into confrontation ” Australia’s new foreign policy, trade landscape in the world of Trump.

Back in 2015 with the support of my cross bench Senate colleagues I managed to get a Senate enquiry into fuel security. It was called ” Australia’s Transport Energy Resilience & Sustainability “. The committee sat in Sydney on 2nd February 2015 & Melbourne on 9th April 2015.

Today’s AM program speaks about the fact that the majority of Australia’s fuel is imported and comes from Singapore. The tankers delivering our fuel come through the South China Sea, an area of the world which is of great concern. Many Australians are unaware of our dependence on imported fuel for our everyday needs. Our refining capabilities are approaching non existent.

The first two F35 JSF arrived in Australia this week for the air show at Avalon in Victoria this weekend. These aircraft are vital to Australia’s defence, being able to project a credible deterrent from our shores and protect our interests in our region they are critical to our national security.

Having committed $17 billion dollars to this project how about the government start some credible planning and commit resources to our fuel security. This would involve securing a refining capability in Australia, looking at and implementing – supporting alternative fuel such as ethanol and biofuels, increasing fuel stockpiles from the currently quoted approximate 3 weeks of supply onshore currently. The Senate committee looked at the precarious state of fuel security in this country and made recommendations to the government.

The government needs to bloody wake up, you can spend billions on the JSF but they won’t fly without fuel. trucks cannot transport our grain, food, medical supplies without diesel. Our farmers cannot plough their paddocks, harvest their crops without diesel. Our firefighters cannot fight fires without diesel in their trucks. Police and Ambulance, medical supplies cannot reach people who need help without fuel. Your car will not take you anywhere without petrol.


I was concerned in 2015 about our fuel security. Two years later what I feared could happen is happening we as a nation are drifting aimlessly without a national fuel strategy in the event of conflict or interruption to supply. Tonight two years later I worry the government is asleep at the wheel, I hope and pray that we don’t find ourselves in a conflict or interruption to supply. Our nation will grind to a halt very quickly.


John Madigan – Australian Country Party

More Dams & Build Big Buffalo

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”.

John Madigan Joins the Country Party


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”-.



Danieli calls for Milk Pricing Inquiry

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:

Robert Danieli
0419 992 077


Fidge announces Tobacco Taxes for Health Policy


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.

Country Party and DLP meet with Toolangi locals concerned with effects of clear felling.

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.


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Media Release: Australian Country Party calls on Nats to deal with reality on dams

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.

For more information contact:

Robert Danieli – 0419 992 077

Julian Fidge – indi@countryparty.org.au

Media Alert: Victoria’s rural rail destruction continues



Media Statement

Victoria’s rural rail destruction continues

Today heavy equipment was brought in to tear up more of Victorian rural rail infrastructure near Carisbrook in Central Victoria. Reasons behind the quiet operation are yet to be confirmed but it has been suggested the rail was needed to repair line after a derailment near Ouyen.
Australian Country Party Secretary Darren Cooper says ”For whatever the reason is for the destruction of the century old rail line it is not good enough. If the rail was needed to repair line at another location it would throw Victoria’s rural rail network into the third world and show massive incompetence at both an operating and political level. Adequate emergency rail should be available along all operating lines and the destruction of a possible key inland route to Victoria’s south west ports is an insult to rural Victorians”.

It is Country Party policy that no more rail infrastructure be sold or destroyed, as proof is with the Mernda rail extension proposal where rail infrastructure destroyed in the 1950’s is now being promised to return by both major parties.

“This is a kick in the guts for Central Victorians after last year’s scare with the former Coalition government removing level crossings and key infrastructure. To rip a line up between two rural location nowadays is nothing but spitefulness, ensuring a future government cannot restore the infrastructure, and with no financial gain to Victorians by doing it “, Mr Cooper said.

Contractors removing rail from the century old rail line, which people have been pushing to become a key link to South West Ports. 

photo courtesy Rail Revival Alliance

For more information contact: Darren Cooper

secretary@countryparty.org.au – 0434 575 299


Media Release: Seasonal workers taxation policy released

for more info click here