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TAS Country : October 14th 2010
Friday, October 15, 2010 Tasmanian Country 13 Your Say firstname.lastname@example.org FARM RIGHTS: Hydro Tasmania's Michael Connarty. Hydro aims for fairest water deal I REFER to the Tasmanian Country article ''History's harvest'' by Jennifer Craw- ley (October 1, 2010), in which the manager of the Cawood property, Neil Wil- liams, puts a misleading slant on Hydro Tasmania's negotiations with Ouse ir- rigators over water allo- cations. Mr Williams says many Ouse River farmers are frustrated about protrac- ted negotiations. He is quoted as saying all we want to talk about is the irrigators' historical use of water, when all they're interested in is what's to be available for future growth of proper- ties. This is not Hydro Tas- mania's approach to nego- tiations. What we're attempting to do is resolve a situation, unique to Australia, which was created by loose language in 1957 legislation to give irrigators unfet- tered water rights. Our approach involves an attempt to define water rights for individual properties. If this can be resolved, it will assist in Tasmania complying with the Natio- nal Water Initiative and see it eligible for signifi- cant funding from the Commonwealth Govern- ment for related water de- velopment projects. This approach does take into account historic and current water use by irri- gators, but also provides for growth into the future. Taken as a whole, our offer to the Ouse irrigators represents a 35 per cent increase over the maxi- mum volume of water ever consumed in the district. In regard to the Cawood property, the total of the offer was more than twice the historical usage. Finally, the article states that environmental flows are another sore issue for Mr Williams and the far- mers. While undefined irri- gation water rights remain in place, Hydro Tasmania has been unable to guaran- tee the effectiveness of an environmental flow for the Ouse River. An investigation is un- der way to determine an appropriate environ- mental flow, which will start as soon as all water entitlements are clear. We will continue to talk to irrigators about this important matter and hope to reach a satisfactory out- come for all parties. DR MICHAEL CONNARTY Manager, system enhancement, Hydro Tasmania Government leaves agriculture studies behind I WRITE regarding Alastair Cameron's letter (Your Say, October 1) in relation to Tasmanian TCE agriculture studies, and the fact that, as of 2011, Tasmanian Year 11 and 12 TCE students will not be able to study a subject covering agriculture. Readers may be interested to know that following a number of concerns from farmers, I raised this issue in State Parliament on a number of occasions in recent weeks, specifically in relation to students enrolled at the Burnie campus of the Tasmanian Skills Institute. I was alarmed to hear that students studying at this campus had the courses cancelled and not rescheduled and have not received work books, training or necessary on-site assessments. As a consequence, these students feel abandoned. Also their employers --- some of whom paid significant fees upfront for workers' tuition --- now feel ripped off. I understand concerns are not limited to the Burnie campus, with broader concerns about the overall shortage of teaching staff statewide at the skills institute, and the problems this causes in terms of cancel- lations across the board. The grim reality is that, instead of improving skills and gaining qualifications, these students are left feeling frustrated by the lack of services and support from the institutions put there to assist them. The State Government continues to draw attention to the amount of time and money it has spent investing to improve workplace skills and training across the state to deliver a balance of training and hands-on practical work. Meanwhile, these students are denied the basic opportunity to pursue a career in agriculture, while Premier David Bartlett continues to talk about the importance of making Tasmania ''the nation's food bowl''. There needs to be a greater level of cohesion between the Skills Institute and what is happening on the ground with various industry and businesses. There also needs to be a greater level of interest from the Education Minister to ensure students across the state are given the chance to follow a career in agriculture. JEREMY ROCKLIFF, MP Opposition spokesman on primary industries and water TRIGUARD is a trademark of Merial Limited. TRITON is a registered trademark of Argenta Manufacturing Limited. 2010 Merial Limited. TRIG-10-002 www.merial.com.au Protect your sheep with new triple-active TRIGUARD. Boasting the potent power of abamectin and a stable formulation, TRIGUARD provides reliable broad-spectrum protection, fights resistance and comes from the makers of another proven performer -- TRITON. Ask your rural supplier about the advantages of new TRIGUARD today. Every sheep, every dose, every time
October 7th 2010
October 21st 2010