The Nationals spokesperson for Agriculture, Colin de Grussa has welcomed the announcement today that the Government’s had reversed its decision to effectively transfer all legal liability and risk for the control of wild dogs on government land to Recognised Biosecurity Groups (RBG).
Under a proposed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) issued to RBGs by the Department of Biosecurity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA), the RBGs would have been required to take on the responsibility for all permits related to dog control activities on land managed by the Department.
Since the inception of RBGs, these permits have always been held by DBCA, as they are ultimately responsible for controlling wild dogs on the land they control.
Mr de Grussa wrote to the Minister for Environment on this matter in August, after Regional Biosecurity Groups had contacted him outlining their concerns. Mr de Grussa also highlighted the issue in Parliament in early September and had been working constructively with the Minister on a solution.
“The Nationals have pushed hard for this outcome since being contacted by RBGs, as we strongly believed that legal responsibility for wild dog control activities on land that is owned and managed by the government should not be carried by volunteers” Mr de Grussa said.
“I thank the minister for his efforts to find a way forward in the short term while working towards a longer term solution to the issue” Mr de Grussa said.
DBCA will continue to hold the permits for the next 12 months to allow ensure the spring wild dog control program can proceed. This should also allow time for a workable longer term solution to be negotiated between RBGs and the Government.