The Weatherill Labor Government must take responsibility for their own financial mismanagement instead of forcing local Natural Resources Management (NRM) Boards to pass on levy increases to residents.
The Member for Flinders Peter Treloar is concerned primary producers in particular could pay more than three times as much as residential property owners if proposed changes to the NRM levy go ahead.
“This is highly unfair on property owners who shouldn’t have to bear the brunt of the Government’s cuts and budget mismanagement,” said Mr Treloar.
The Eyre Peninsula NRM Board needs to raise an extra $520,000 in 2016-17, after its funding was cut by nearly $1.8 million over the past two years.
The Board has already initiated various efficiency measures, including reducing staff by 7.6 full-time positions, scaling back programs, and using savings to fund core Board functions.
Proposed changes on the Eyre Peninsula now include a land use model, in which residential, commercial, industrial and primary producers all pay varying amounts.
If the change is not supported, all ratepayers will be equally hit with a levy increase.
“I value the work of the NRM Boards very highly for the role they play in supporting the sustainability of the state’s natural environment,” said Mr Treloar.
“The Weatherill Labor Government continues to treat the public with disdain when they make decisions such as this which will ultimately hit the hip-pockets of South Australians.”
Today’s Natural Resources Committee meeting will take evidence from witnesses about the NRM levy. The meeting will be held this morning in the Balcony Room, Parliament House.